By Colin Kellaher
Biogen Inc. Thursday said it signed a license agreement with Bio-Thera Solutions Ltd. to develop, manufacture and commercialize Bio-Thera's BAT1806, a proposed biosimilar to Roche Holdings AG's blockbuster rheumatoid-arthritis drug Actemra.
Biogen said it will make an upfront payment of $30 million to Guangzhou, China, biopharmaceutical company Bio-Thera, contingent upon a Phase 3 study of BAT1806 achieving satisfactory results.
The Cambridge, Mass., biopharmaceutical company said it will gain exclusive regulatory, manufacturing and commercial rights to BAT1806 in all countries excluding China, while Bio-Thera will be eligible for potential milestone payments, along with royalties on sales.
Biosimilars are near-copies of biologic drugs, such as Actemra, that are made from living cells and are analogous to generic copies of traditional pill-form medicines. Worldwide sales of Actemra topped $3 billion last year.
Biogen said it expects to complete the transaction in the second quarter.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires