Sanofi-Aventis signs global licensing pact with Metabolex for Type II diabetes drug

French pharmaceutical company Sanofi-Aventis today signed a global licensing deal with US biopharmaceutical firm Metabolex for a new oral drug to treat Type II diabetes.

This is one of the many such deals that the Paris-based drug maker has signed with bio-pharmaceutical companies in recent months.

Under this deal, Sanofi-Aventis, the world's fourth-largest pharmaceutical company by prescription sales, will receive an exclusive worldwide license to develop, manufacture and commercialise MBX-2982, currently in Phase II, and related compounds.

Under the terms of the agreement, which is subject to antitrust clearance in the US under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, Metabolex will receive an upfront payment and will be eligible to receive development, regulatory, and specified commercial milestone payments.

The total of all those payments could reach $375 million. Metabolex will also receive royalties on the worldwide product sales.

The licensing deal is on Metabolex' MBX-2982 oral drug that has completed three Phase 1 clinical studies and has consistently shown clinically meaningful glucose reductions in healthy volunteers and subjects with impaired glucose tolerance.