MEI Pharma Just Landed A Huge Million Dollar Deal

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MEI Pharma will be getting $20 million in near-term cash and potentially hundreds millions more under a new cancer drug partnership with Swedish company Helsinn Group.

In the deal, MEI Pharma’s pracinostat will be licensed to Helsinn Group under an exclusive worldwide agreement to develop and commercialize the drug for acute myeloid leukemia and possibly other conditions.

It was just last week that the FDA gave pracinostat a Breakthrough Therapy designation when used with azacitidine. The FDA’s designation covers use on newly diagnosed AML patients who are 75 or older, or who are unfit for intensive chemotherapy required for a bone marrow transplant.

Pracinostat has finished a Phase 2 trial for acute myeloid leukemia and is ready for Phase 3 trials, according to Daniel Gold, MEI’s president and CEO. It’s projected to begin in the first quarter of 2017.

In the deal, MEI Pharma will get $15 million upfront, and $5 million more when the first patient is treated in the upcoming Phase 3 trial. The deal has been approved by the boards of both companies.

Disclaimer: We have no position in MEI Pharma Inc. (NASDAQ: MEIP) nor Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: F) and have not been compensated for this article.