Cases & Deals

sanofi-aventis and U.S. biopharmaceutical company Ascenta Therapeutics sign license agreement in oncology

Client(s) sanofi-aventis S.A.

Jones Day is advising sanofi-aventis S.A., a leading global pharmaceutical company, in connection with an exclusive global collaboration and licensing agreement with Ascenta Therapeutics, a U.S. biopharmaceutical company, covering several early-stage compounds being investigated for their potential to restore tumor cell apoptosis (programmed cell death). These orally-active, small-molecule drug candidates inhibit the p53-HDM2 (Human Double Minute 2) protein-protein interaction, leading potentially to reactivation of p53 tumor suppressor functions and therefore enhancing current cancer treatments. Ascenta in-licenses these compounds from the University of Michigan. Under the terms of the agreement, Ascenta will receive an upfront payment, as well as development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments. All such payments could reach a total of US $398 million. In addition, Ascenta is eligible to receive tiered royalties on worldwide product sales.