Medicines Co. snags rights to Pfizer heart drug

The Medicines Company believes it can succeed where Pfizer's R&D team has failed. The developer announced that it is buying the heart drug ApoA-I Milano from the pharma giant, which failed to make much progress with the program after spending $1.3 billion to buy Esperion, which had owned the therapy. Pfizer agreed to take only $10 million upfront for the rights to the drug, with another $410 million in milestones if the developer can turn it around.

"It remains to be seen if Medicines Co. can do something with ApoA-I Milano where Pfizer could not," notes TheStreet's Adam Feuerstein, "but then, Medicines Co. CEO (Clive) Meanwell seemed to relish the challenge of buying other companies' throwaway drugs." And Meanwell believes his company can do it.

"By mimicking the actions of HDL, ApoA-I Milano has been shown in an early clinical study, published in JAMA, to rapidly reduce the size of atherosclerotic plaques," says Meanwell. "This is an area of cardiovascular medicine that is not yet served by currently available therapies--and the potential to provide disease modification for patients with high risk atheroma and associated acute coronary syndromes represents a major innovation opportunity."

- take a look at the press release
- here's the report from TheStreet