ARTICLE | Company News

Cytokinetics, Astellas deal

August 1, 2016 7:00 AM UTC

Cytokinetics and Astellas expanded their skeletal muscle activator collaboration to add a focus on amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and extend through 2017 their joint program to research and discover next-generation skeletal muscle compounds. Cytokinetics granted Astellas an option to license rights to tirasemtiv (formerly CK-2017357). The deal includes tirasemtiv’s rights outside North America, Europe and other undisclosed territories, where Cytokinetics will retain rights. Tirasemtiv, a fast skeletal muscle troponin activator, is in the Phase III VITALITY-ALS trial to treat ALS.

The companies also now plan to develop CK-2127107 and other next-generation fast skeletal muscle troponin activators for ALS. CK-2127107 is in Phase II testing to treat spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). Cytokinetics will receive $65 million up front and is eligible for more than $100 million in payments associated with the exercise of the option and milestones. The companies each would be eligible for double-digit royalties on sales in the partners’ territories. Cytokinetics will receive about $30 million in R&D funding through 2017 for CK-2127107, which will help support a Phase II trial of the compound in ALS and the extension through 2017 of the discovery deal. ...