FOSTER CITY, Calif. & SEOUL, Korea--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: GILD) and Yuhan Corporation (000100.KS; Yuhan) today announced that the companies have entered into a licensing and collaboration agreement to co-develop novel therapeutic candidates for the treatment of patients with advanced fibrosis due to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).
Under the agreement, Gilead will acquire global rights to develop and commercialize novel small molecules against two undisclosed targets in all countries, with the exception of the Republic of Korea where Yuhan will retain certain commercialization rights. Yuhan and Gilead will jointly conduct preclinical research, and Gilead will be responsible for global clinical development. Gilead will also be responsible for commercialization worldwide, outside of Yuhan’s rights in the Republic of Korea. In connection with this agreement, Yuhan will receive an upfront payment of $15 million and is eligible to receive up to an additional $770 million in potential milestone payments upon achievement of certain development and commercial milestones, as well as royalties on future net sales. This agreement builds on the companies’ existing commercial collaboration to support the promotion of Gilead’s medicines in the Republic of Korea.
NASH is a chronic and progressive liver disease characterized by fat accumulation and inflammation in the liver, which can lead to scarring, or fibrosis, that impairs liver function. Individuals with advanced fibrosis due to NASH, defined as bridging fibrosis (F3) or cirrhosis (F4), may face serious consequences, including end-stage liver disease, liver cancer and the need for liver transplantation, and are at a significantly higher risk of liver-related mortality. Currently, patients living with NASH have limited treatment options.
“This collaboration builds on our long-term partnership with Yuhan, with a new focus on the investigation of novel approaches to treat patients with advanced fibrosis due to NASH that complement our ongoing research programs,” said John McHutchison, MD, AO, Chief Scientific Officer and Head of Research and Development, Gilead Sciences. “We look forward to working with the Yuhan team to advance our work in this area where there is a significant unmet need for patients.”
“I am very pleased by this collaboration, which significantly expands and deepens our longstanding, trusted partnership with Gilead. We are confident that Gilead’s expertise in liver disease will accelerate the development of our novel agents. As a company, we are committed to investigating new therapeutics to improve the lives of patients with NASH,” said Mr. Jung Hee Lee, President and CEO of Yuhan.
About Yuhan Corporation
Yuhan Corporation is a South Korea-based healthcare company founded in 1926. The company has positioned itself as one of the top pharmaceutical companies in terms of market cap and sales revenue in Korea. The core business consists of primary & specialty care, dietary supplements, household & animal care, and contract manufacturing of active pharmaceutical ingredients. It has a number of subsidiaries and a global presence in the form of joint ventures with the Clorox Company (USA) and Kimberly-Clark Corporation (USA). Yuhan (000100:KS) is a publicly-listed company traded on the Korea Stock Exchange.
About Gilead Sciences
Gilead Sciences, Inc. is a research-based biopharmaceutical company that discovers, develops and commercializes innovative medicines in areas of unmet medical need. The company strives to transform and simplify care for people with life-threatening illnesses around the world. Gilead has operations in more than 35 countries worldwide, with headquarters in Foster City, California. For more information on Gilead Sciences, please visit the company’s website at www.gilead.com.
Gilead Forward-Looking Statement
This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, including the risk that the parties may not realize the potential benefits of this collaboration program and Gilead may fail to develop and/or commercialize any product candidates from the collaboration program. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements. These risks, uncertainties and other factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those referred to in the forward-looking statements. The reader is cautioned not to rely on these forward-looking statements. These and other risks are described in detail in Gilead’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2018, as filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. All forward-looking statements are based on information currently available to Gilead, and Gilead assumes no obligation to update any such forward-looking statements.
For more information on Gilead Sciences, please visit the company’s website at www.gilead.com, follow Gilead on Twitter (@GileadSciences) or call Gilead Public Affairs at 1-800-GILEAD-5 or 1-650-574-3000.