United Therapeutics and MannKind Announce Collaboration for Pulmonary Hypertension Products

Posted on September 04, 2018 by Medtech[y] Staff

MannKind's stock ($MNKD) is up 61% in midday trading as they have entered into a worldwide exclusive licensing and collaboration agreement with United Therapeutics for the development and commercialization of a dry powder formulation of treprostinil, an investigational product currently being evaluated in clinical trials for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension.

Here are 5 things to know about the partnership - 

1. Under the terms of the agreement, MannKind Corporation will receive an upfront payment of $45 million and potential milestone payments of up to $50 million, dependent upon the achievement of specific development targets. MannKind will also be entitled to receive low double-digit royalties on net sales of the product.

2. MannKind will receive an immediate payment of $10 million as the two companies entered into a research agreement for products outside the scope of the licensing and collaboration agreement. 

3. MannKind granted United Therapeutics an option to expand the license to include other active ingredients for the treatment of pulmonary hypertension. Each optioned product would be subject to the payment to MannKind of up to $40 million in additional option exercise and development milestone payments as well as a low double-digit royalty on net sales of any such product. 

4. MannKind CEO, Michael Castagna, was understandably excited about this partnership: “We are excited to partner with United Therapeutics, a company that shares our passionate focus on changing patients’ lives. We are pleased with this new opportunity to demonstrate the value of our drug and device combination platform for delivering therapeutic products. We believe this collaboration will have the potential to significantly improve the lives of people living with pulmonary arterial hypertension.”

5. United Therapeutics response: “On the very same day 21 years ago, we enabled the development of treprostinil into a practical treatment thanks to an invention of the late Al Mann –the discrete, ambulatory, programmable, parenteral infusion pump called the MiniMed 407c,” said Martine Rothblatt, Ph.D., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of United Therapeutics. “By marrying our molecule and MiniMed’s device, Remodulin was born. As we now move into the second generation of United Therapeutics products, we are proud to once again team with Al Mann’s brilliance, this time with his Dreamboat, Bluhale and Cricket® devices for inhalation. I believe these revolutionary new inhalation devices will accomplish for Tyvaso what our recently-approved Implantable System for Remodulin, pending RemUnity™ system and recently-acquired Trevyent product represent for Remodulin – a further step toward a next generation of treprostinil drug-device systems that enhance options for patients, their families and their prescribers.”

This cash injection is much needed as MannKind's losses have been increasing as they continue to ramp up sales of Afrezza. 

Afrezza Prescriber Data
MannKind Q2 Earnings Presentation

Read next: Can Instagram Be MannKind Afrezza's Best Marketing Tool?