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GSK and Mpex to collaborate on EPIs

19th June 2008

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has signed an agreement with Mpex Pharmaceuticals for the development of innovative efflux pump inhibitors (EPIs) to be used against serious gram-negative infections.

The company reports these drugs have the potential to combine compounds with a number of existing and new antibiotics in order to create a wide offering of anti-infective drugs that will show activity against medication-resistant organisms.

Under the terms of the deal, GSK will be given access to novel efflux pump inhibitors (EPIs) from Mpex and the related proprietary technology.

It will also be granted the rights to product candidates developed by the collaboration directed to three target product profiles with the potential of delivering up to seven treatments.

GSK will pay Mpex an initial fee of $8.5 million (4.3 million pounds) and a $6.5 million equity finance commitment, in addition to development, regulatory and commercial milestones of up to $200-250 million for each drug candidate.

Zhi Hong, senior vice-president of the Infectious Diseases Centre of Excellence for Drug Discovery (ID CEDD) at GSK, said: “Antibiotic discovery has faced tremendous challenges with the discovery of only two new classes of antibiotics over the last three decades.”

He added that EPIs could potentially add value to existing antibiotics and facilitate development of the novel antibiotic pipeline at GSK.

Dr Hong was appointed as the head of ID CEDD in April 2007, being given the role of coordinating and integrating the firm’s research and development work relating to infectious diseases.

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