Pharmos Corp. signed a $9 million deal granting U.S. marketingrights for its lead product, Lotemax, to Bausch & LombPharmaceuticals Inc.

Lotemax, the brand name for loteprednol etabonate, is beingdeveloped as a treatment for ophthalmic inflammation and allergies.Pharmos, with offices in New York and Florida, submitted a newdrug application to the FDA for Lotemax earlier this year.

Under terms of the deal, Pharmos will receive $4 million over 10months from Bausch & Lomb Pharmaceuticals, of Tampa, Fla., as anadvance on supplies of the active substance used in making Lotemax,which is a steroid. Bausch & Lomb Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary ofRochester, N.Y.-based Bausch & Lomb Inc., has rights tomanufacture the drug on a commercial basis with materials suppliedby Pharmos.

In addition to the $4 million, Pharmos will receive another $2 millionin milestone payments and about $3 million in clinical developmentcosts for two other Lotemax-related products, which Bausch & Lombalso will market in the U.S. Pharmos retained rights to Lotemax andthe other drugs outside the U.S.

Colin Neill, Pharmos' acting chief financial officer, said the currentagreement with Bausch & Lomb is broader than a proposed dealconsidered by the two companies in April 1994. That potentialcollaboration never progressed beyond a letter of intent.

The Bausch & Lomb agreement is the second deal negotiated byPharmos in four months. In April, Pharmos acquired Cambridge,Mass.-based Oculon Corp. for 6 million shares of Pharmos stock.

Combining $4 million in cash from the Oculon acquisition with fundsincluded in the Bausch & Lomb alliance gives Pharmos enoughfinancing to keep operating through the first quarter of 1996, Neillsaid.

He added that Pharmos has "strengthened its balance sheet" withenough resources to take the company up to the point ofcommercializing its first product.

Pharmos (NASDAQ:PARS) closed Wednesday at $2.50, down 3cents. _ Charles Craig

(c) 1997 American Health Consultants. All rights reserved.