Vifor Pharma and Cara Therapeutics sign US license agreement for i.v. Korsuva* to treat dialysis patients with pruritus
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Vifor Pharma and Cara Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq:CARA) today announced that both companies have signed a license agreement for commercialization of Korsuva (difelikefalin) Injection (“i.v. Korsuva”) for the treatment of chronic kidney disease-associated pruritus (CKD-aP) in the US dialysis market for non-Fresenius Medical Care clinics under a Cara 60%, Vifor Pharma 40% profit-sharing arrangement.
“Vifor Pharma has a strong market position and deep expertise in the nephrology space. This agreement further strengthens our US nephrology presence. We now have commercialization rights for i.v. Korsuva in the full dialysis segment by adding all non-FMC dialysis clinics, representing approx. 66% of the US market,” said Stefan Schulze, CEO of Vifor Pharma Group. Moderate to severe haemodialysis-associated pruritus is a debilitating condition that impacts up to 40% of dialysis patients around the world and for which there is currently no approved treatment in the US or Europe. I.v. Korsuva is an important, innovative new therapeutic that has the potential to address this significant unmet need. We remain committed to making i.v. Korsuva available next year to dialysis patients, who urgently need an effective therapy.”
“With an established fully dedicated nephrology sales force in the US, Vifor Pharma is an ideal commercialization partner to bring i.v. Korsuva to dialysis patients across the country,” said Derek Chalmers, Ph.D., D. Sc., President and Chief Executive Officer of Cara Therapeutics. “In addition, we believe Vifor Pharma’s existing relationships with US dialysis providers will provide significant momentum for the launch and adoption of i.v. Korsuva, if approved. As a result of this agreement, we expect to focus Cara’s internal resources on our clinical programs for oral Korsuva in atopic dermatitis, pre-dialysis CKD and additional pruritic conditions.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Cara will receive an upfront payment of USD 100 million in cash and an equity investment of USD 50 million. In addition, Cara will be eligible to receive an additional equity investment upon US regulatory approval of i.v. Korsuva, as well as milestone payments dependent on achieving commercial targets, which together could total up to USD 290 million. Additional information regarding the terms of the agreements between Cara and Vifor Pharma announced today, will be set forth in a Current Report on Form 8-K to be filed by Cara with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on 20 October, 2020.