ImmuLogic Pharmaceutical Corp. announced Monday that itwill complete its technical participation in a four-yearcollaborative research program with Merck & Co. by the fourthquarter of this year.

The program, initiated in 1989, was focused on thedevelopment of HLA blockers, compounds to inhibit the earlystages of autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritisand type I diabetes.

The original agreement was for three years; Merck had twoone-year options for extension, the first of which it exercisedlast year. But now, "there's nothing left to do from the researchside," said Richard Small, ImmuLogic's (NASDAQ:IMUL) chieffinancial officer.

Merck of Rahway, N.J., will continue to use the technologydeveloped under the collaboration, through preclinicaldevelopment and the identification of potential productcandidates. "The program has now reached the stage at whichMerck can develop the technology on its own. ... We haveagreed to provide additional consultation as Merck continuesthe program to a successful conclusion," said Richard Bagley,ImmuLogic's president and chief executive officer.

ImmuLogic of Waltham, Mass., will receive milestone paymentsfrom Merck, based on initiation of clinical trials and new drugapplication filing, as well as royalties on sales of any eventualproducts, said ImmuLogic's Small. -- Jennifer Van Brunt

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

No Comments