AYERST FOLLOWING LILLY INTO U.S. NASAL INSULIN MARKET
AYERST FOLLOWING LILLY INTO U.S. NASAL INSULIN MARKET, as the second firm to license Cal Biotech's Nazdel nasal delivery technology for use with insulin. "Under the agreement, Ayerst will conduct further development of an intranasal form of insulin based on the Nazdel technology, and will have rights to market a resulting product in the U.S. on a non-exclusive basis," California Biotech reported in a Nov. 3 press release. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Ayerst's first move into the U.S. insulin market will pit the company's detail force against the marketing muscle of an established player. Lilly is the major supplier of bovine, porcine, and recombinant insulin and, with Squibb/Novo, controls nearly all of the U.S. insulin market. Through the competitive detailing of the same product by two sales forces, Cal Biotech can conceivably optimize its royalty income potential. At the same time, any royalties produced by nasal insulin, even those generated by Lilly, help American Home Products, which currently owns 15.4% of Cal Biotech. American Home Products' Wyeth division earlier signed a development and licensing agreement covering Cal Biotech's recombinant natriuretic factor Auriculin. On Sept. 26, Lilly agreed to continue funding development of Cal Biotech's nasal insulin product, which began clinical evaluation in early 1986. At the time, the biotech firm said that it could receive payments of up to $10 mil. plus royalties, over the next five to six years, contingent on the achievement of various product development milestones. Under the agreement, Lilly has exclusive marketing rights outside the U.S. Potential applications of the Nazdel system extend beyond insulin, according to the release. The company currently has agreements with J&J subsidiary Ortho covering the delivery of contraceptives and anticancer products based on LHRH, and with Roche involving use with appetite suppressants and growth hormone releasing factor. Cal Biotech developed the Nazdel technology in collaboration with the Harvard Medical School and has exclusive rights to the patent.
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