AstraZeneca offloads rights to schizophrenia duo in US & Canada

Continuing with its ongoing divestiture programme, AstraZeneca is offloading the commercial rights to Seroquel and Seroquel XR in the US and Canada to Germany pharma company, Cheplapharm.

The treatments, used primary to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, have lost their compound patent protection in the US and Canada.

Cheplapharm will make an upfront payment of $35 million and may also make future sales-contingent payments of up to $6 million.

According to Ruud Dobber, Executive Vice President of AstraZeneca’s BioPharmaceuticals Business Unit, the divestment “supports our strategy of reducing the number of mature medicines to enable reinvestment in our main therapy areas”.

He added that: “Cheplapharm recently agreed to acquire the commercial rights to Seroquel and Seroquel XR in most European markets and Russia from AstraZeneca and this new agreement will help ensure continued patient access to this important established medicine in North America as well.”

AstraZeneca will continue to manufacture and supply Seroquel (quetiapine fumarate immediate release) and Seroquel XR (quetiapine fumarate extended release) to Cheplapharm during a transition period.

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