ChemGenex scores $138M cancer licensing pact

ChemGenex Pharmaceuticals has scored a $138 million licensing deal with Hospira, which will help market and further develop the Australian biotech's lead cancer drug, omacetaxine mepesuccinate. Hospira will make an initial upfront payment of about $18 million with another $120 million in milestones for the drug, which is designed to treat chronic myeloid leukemia. In return, Hospira gains commercialization rights in in Europe, the Middle East and parts of Africa.

U.S. and European regulators have already accepted ChemGenex's marketing applications for the therapy as they consider an approval to use the drug on patients with a particular genetic mutation who have failed standard therapy.

"We are very pleased to announce this important agreement, in keeping with our corporate strategy of partnering in Europe and other parts of the world, as we prepare for the launch of omacetaxine in the U.S, if approved," said Greg Collier, chief executive of ChemGenex. "We look forward to working with the Hospira team to realize omacetaxine's potential in the hematology-oncology space in Europe."

- check out ChemGenex's release
- and here's the story from the Sydney Morning Herald