Allergan bags migraine drug in $1B MAP Pharma buyout

Allergan snagged co-promotion rights to MAP's Levadex--courtesy of MAP Pharmaceuticals

Two years after Allergan ($AGN) snagged co-promotion rights to MAP Pharmaceuticals' ($MAPP) inhalable migraine therapy Levadex with a $157 million licensing deal, it's come back to the bargaining table and crafted a pact to buy the biotech for close to a billion dollars.

Allergan agreed to pay $25 a share for MAP, a whopping 60% premium, as regulators ponder the developer's second try at an approval. The FDA issued a CRL on Levadex last March, with a detailed list of demands for more information on MAP's chemistry, manufacturing and controls process as well as more time to inspect a third-party manufacturer's facility and review the company's inhaler. The FDA now has until April 15 to issue a decision on marketing the therapy, and it's clear that Allergan believes regulators are preparing to hit the green light.

MAP's migraine drug is a revised version of dihydroergotamine, an IV drug that was been reformulated into a new therapy that can be administered alone with an inhaler. 

The deal makes sense for Allergan. Botox is approved for use as a migraine therapy, giving the company ample marketing experience in the field. And it's been using its Botox bucks to buy new products. Last November it struck a deal to buy SkinMedica for $350 million.

"Allergan has a record of leadership in the Neurosciences field and, according to a recent physician survey, is now perceived as the #1 company in prophylactic migraine management by physicians," said Allergan CEO David E.I. Pyott. "During the past few years, Allergan has received regulatory approvals in 56 countries for Botox for use in the treatment of chronic migraine. As a result, thousands of patients who suffer from chronic migraine have benefited from this important treatment option. We plan to capitalize on this depth of expertise in Neurology as we continue the global development of Levadex as a potential acute treatment for migraine that is complementary to Botox and use MAP's proprietary drug particle and inhalation technologies to generate new pipeline opportunities."

Migraine offers a significant market, which has been attracting a number of developers. NuPathe ($PATH) won an approval for its migraine patch last week.

- here's the press release
- hetre's the story from The New York Times (sub. req.)


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