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GSK signs $820 million deal with Valeant for epilepsy drug


LONDON GlaxoSmithKline and Valeant Pharmaceuticals International have signed an agreement to develop the epilepsy drug retigabine, GSK announced Thursday.

The drug, the first in its class, is a neuronal potassium channel opener for treating adult epilepsy patients with refractory partial-onset seizures. The company said it had shown successful results in two phase III trials with patients receiving up to three antiepileptic drugs.

Under the terms of the agreement, GSK will pay Valeant $125 million upfront for worldwide development and commercialization rights to retigabine and other compounds from the same development program, as well as milestone payments of up to $695 million.

“GSK is looking forward to working with Valeant to provide important medicines like retigabine to the medical community and to the patients we serve,” said Steve Stefano, senior vice president of GSK’s NeuroHealth division in the United States. “There is a significant need for novel anti-epileptic drugs, as almost one-third of patients with epilepsy continue to experience seizures despite treatment with currently available medications.”

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