(AP) — Specialty drugmaker Pacira Pharmaceuticals Inc. has licensed its
DepoFoam drug delivery technology to Novo Nordisk AS in a deal that could be
worth more than $45.5 million.
Pacira said it will get $1.5 million upfront from the Danish
drugmaker, and could receive as much as $24 million in milestone payments if
products from the collaboration advance through regulatory review. It could
also get up to $20 million in sales milestone payments, and will get
single-digit royalties for up to 12 years after the first product is
introduced. Novo Nordisk will cover all costs related to the partnership.
Pacira develops drugs that are delivered through its
extended release DepoFoam technology. The active ingredient in the drug is
collected in microscopic chambers in a honeycomb-like structure, and the
ingredient is released slowly after the drug is injected. The company said the
technology can deliver doses of medication lasting one to 30 days.
The Parsippany, N.J., company registered an initial public
offering in November. Pacira says it intends to sell 4.3 million shares of its
stock for $14 to $16 per share, and the underwriters of its IPO will have an
option to buy another 637,500 shares to cover any over allotments. The company
has filed for listing on the Nasdaq Global Stock Market under the symbol
“PCRX,” but has not proposed a date for its IPO.
Pacira said it develops products for use in hospitals and
surgery centers. It has two products on the market: the chemotherapy drug
DepoCyte, and the surgical pain drug DepoDur. In September it filed for
marketing approval of Exparel, a drug designed to treat pain for up to three
days following surgery. Unlike DepoDur and many pain medications, Exparel is
not an opioid drug. The Food and Drug Administration should complete its review
of the Exparel application in July. The company says it plans to file for