US-based Allergan and Switzerland's Molecular Partners said Tuesday they have formed an exclusive alliance to develop and market eye disease treatments worth up to $1.4 billion (1.1 billion euros).
In addition to $62.5 million in upfront payments, Molecular Partners "is eligible to receive additional success-based payments, including up to $1.4 billion" for meeting development, regulatory and sales goals, as well as royalties on sales, the companies said in a statement.
A first agreement is for cooperation on developing a treatment for age-related macular degeneration, a common cause of vision loss.
A second agreement is for the development of similar compounds that could treat other ophthalmic diseases.
Allergan will have three options to exclusively licence compounds developed out of their collaboration, paying Molecular Partners a fee and taking over further development and marketing.
Zurich-based Molecular Partners is a privately-owned biotech company focusing on the research, development and commercialisation of small proteins called DARPins.
Allergan, the maker of the popular anti-wrinkle treatment Botox, has more than 10,000 emplyes in more than 100 countries.