Issue Date: February 14, 2011
Astellas Buys Into Optimer Antibiotic
Japanese drugmaker Astellas has agreed to pay $68 million for European rights to fidaxomicin, a narrow-spectrum antibiotic being developed by Optimer Pharmaceuticals. Astellas will fund the drug’s remaining development costs in Europe. The San Diego-based biotech firm could reap an additional $156 million in milestone payments. Fidaxomicin, an orally administered macrocyclic antibiotic, is being developed to treat infections caused by Clostridium difficile, a gram-positive bacterium that survives in the gut after other bacteria have been wiped out by broad-spectrum antibiotics. Optimer has filed for approval of the drug in both the U.S. and Europe.
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