Skip to Content

Watson Licenses Hormone Drug Candidate From Itero

From Associated Press (July 15, 2010)

NEW YORK -- Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Thursday it acquired the rights to a biologic drug that could be sold as a generic version of a female infertility treatment.

Watson licensed a recombinant follicle stimulating hormone from Itero Biopharmaceuticals. Itero’s product has not yet been tested on humans.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the companies said it includes an upfront payment and additional payments if the drug advances through testing and regulatory review, and royalties if it reaches the market.

Watson will assume all development, manufacturing and commercial expenses.

Itero’s drug is designed to be a generic version of biotech infertility treatments including Follistim and Gonal-F. Generics of biotech drugs, or biosimilars, are considered more difficult and expensive to develop than traditional pharmaceuticals. Biologic drugs are grown in living cells while older pharmaceuticals are synthesized chemically.

Watson said this is the first time it has licensed a potential biosimilar drug. It develops and distributes generic drugs and specialized branded drugs focused on urology and women’s health.

Watson is based in Morristown, N.J., while Itero is based in San Mateo, Calif.

in morning trading, Watson stock fell 30 cents to $43.59.


Posted: July 2010