Chief Scientist approves Cypress-BiolineRX deal

Cypress Biosence has paid the first $30 million to BiolineRX for the company's schizophrenia drug.

BiolineRX Ltd. (TASE:BLRX) has received $30 million from Cypress Bioscience Inc. (Nasdaq:CYPB), after Cypress obtained a written notice of consent from the Office of Chief Scientist. The money was released from an escrow account.

In late June, BiolineRX signed an in-license agreement for its antipsychotic drug BL-1020, for the treatment of schizophrenia. The schizophrenia market is estimated at $13 billion. The agreement with Cypress stipulated an initial $30 million payment, which was announced today.

BiolineRX will later receive more payments from Cypress for up to a total of $335 million, subject to regulatory and development milestones for BL-1020, approval of additional uses for the drug, and sales. BiolineRX should also receive 12-18% royalties on future sales, with the amount of the royalties depending on turnover.

Cypress chairman and CEO Jay Kranzler said, "We are pleased to move forward with our agreement with BioLineRx, as we believe that the novel antipsychotic CYP-1020 holds great potential to address both the psychotic symptoms and cognitive deficits associated with schizophrenia. This agreement marks an important step forward in Cypress's strategy to build one of the highest quality CNS pipelines in the industry."

BiolineRX's share price rose 0.2% in early trading today to NIS 3.50, giving a market cap of NIS 437 million.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on August 11, 2010

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2010

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