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Irvine-based Allergan, MAP partner on migraine drug

The local firm is paying $60 million up front, plus up to $97 million if certain milestones are met.

By Kristen SchottPublished: January 31, 2011 10:26 AM

Irvine-based Allergan has inked a deal worth up to $157 million with Mountain View-based MAP Pharmaceuticals to co-promote an investigational migraine drug once it's approved by the FDA.

Levadex is a self-administered and orally inhaled treatment for acute migraines in adults. The therapy has completed Phase III clinical development, and the drug is expected to offer an at-home option for those who suffer from the condition.

Under the terms of the deal, Allergan is paying $60 million up front, plus up to $97 million if certain milestones are met. The two companies will jointly promote Levadex to neurologists and pain specialists in the U.S. after FDA approval, and MAP will retain the rights to commercialize the drug outside the U.S., as well as to primary-care physicians within the U.S.

In addition, MAP will manufacture and distribute Levadex in the U.S., and the two companies will jointly develop the therapy for other uses, including treating adolescent migraines. The companies will share profits from sales of the drug once it has been OK'd by the FDA.

"As a company devoted to the advancement of patient care in specialty areas, including neurosciences, we are pleased to partner with MAP Pharmaceuticals to realize the potential of Levadex,” said David Pyott, Allergan’s chairman of the board and CEO.

The pharmaceutical company specializes in eye care, obesity intervention, medical aesthetics and dermatology, urologics and neurosciences. Its Botox drug is used in a variety of treatments, including chronic migraines.

“Their (Allergan's) commitment to neurosciences and their understanding of the needs of our target physicians for Levadex have been demonstrated through the ongoing evolution of Botox, including its recent FDA approval for chronic migraine patients," said Timothy Nelson, president and CEO of MAP. "They are the ideal partner to help us best serve this specialty segment and to provide the resources needed to successfully launch and commercialize Levadex upon potential FDA approval.”

MAP plans to submit its application for FDA approval in the first half of the year.

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