Cidara Rallies On Development Deal For Lead Antifungal Medication

Cidara Therapeutics Inc CDTX shares were advancing by more than 50% Tuesday after the thinly traded, micro-cap biotech announced a development and commercialization deal for its lead medication rezafungin.

The Deal

Cidara said it has entered into a strategic partnership with U.K.-based, privately held Mundipharma, under which it will grant Mundipharma exclusive commercialization rights to rezafungin outside the U.S. and Japan.

In exchange, Cidara stands to receive a $30-million upfront payment and an additional $42 million in near-term funding to finance the global Phase 3 ReSTORE and ReSPECT trials for the treatment and prevention of fungal infections.

Additionally, Cidara is eligible to receive development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments of up to $568 million, plus double-digit royalties.

Mundipharma is to make a $9-million equity investment in Cidara.

The Product

Rezafungin is a novel, once-weekly echinocandin antifungal being developed for the first-line treatment of candidemia and invasive candidiasis. It is also being evaluated as a preventive treatment for invasive fungal infections in patients undergoing allogeneic blood and marrow transplantation.

For the latter indications, no new therapies have been approved for over 13 years, Cidara said.

Cidara said it will continue to lead the ongoing global late-stage program with the support of Mundipharma. The company also said it may pursue additional indications or formulations for the investigational compound, along with Mundipharma.

"This is a transformational collaboration for Cidara, and we look forward to working closely with our colleagues at Mundipharma, a highly successful, profitable company with a commercial presence spanning 120 markets worldwide and annual sales exceeding 2 billion euros ($2.2 billion)," Cidara CEO Jeffrey Stein said in a statement. 

Cidara shares were trading higher by 49.11% to $2.50 at the time of publication Tuesday. 

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