Salix Pharmaceuticals, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SLXP) and Alfa Wassermann S.p.A.
today announced that they have entered into an exclusive agreement by
which Salix has licensed rights in the United States and Canada to an
extended intestinal release (EIR) formulation of rifaximin for
gastrointestinal and respiratory indications, including Crohn's disease.
The EIR formulation of rifaximin has been designed to release the active
drug following passage through the stomach and provide a homogeneous
distribution of rifaximin in the intestinal tract. The EIR formulation
of rifaximin was designed to provide an efficient delivery of rifaximin
and will be studied for its potential to target difficult to treat
diseases of the intestinal tract such as Crohn's disease.
Financial terms of the transaction include a $10 million up-front
payment and a $25 million development milestone payment upon NDA
approval of an EIR formulation rifaximin product for Crohn's disease.
Salix also will pay sales-based milestones in respect of EIR formulation
rifaximin products for Crohn's disease, if sales targets are achieved,
plus royalties on product sales of all EIR formulation rifaximin
products. Alfa Wassermann will manufacture Salix's requirements of EIR
formulation rifaximin products.