Kilpatrick Townsend managed the global License, Development and Commercialization Agreement between Biotest AG (Biotest), a German publicly traded biotechnology company, and Abbott Laboratories (Abbott) for the further development and commercialization of Biotest’s BT-061, a novel anti-CD4 antibody for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and psoriasis. In connection with the deal, Biotest will receive an upfront payment of $85 million. Additional milestone payments total $395 million, and Biotest will receive royalties thereafter on the sale of commercial products, bringing the total value of the deal well over $500 million.

BT-061 is currently in Phase II clinical trials for Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and psoriasis, with pre-clinical studies underway to study its potential use in other immune-related diseases. CD4 is expressed on T-cells and is involved in T-cell mediated modulation of immune responses. BT-061 is a humanized monoclonal antibody that works by activating the body’s T-regulatory cells, a subset of T-cells, strengthening a natural function of the body that prevents excessive immune reactions. Unlike other anti-CD4 antibodies that have been in development, BT-061 does not cause depletion of CD4 positive T-cells that would give rise to weakened immune responses.

Under the terms of the agreement, Abbott and Biotest will co-promote BT-061 in five major European markets (Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Spain). Abbott will have exclusive global rights to commercialize BT-061 outside those countries. In addition to the upfront fee of $85 million, and subject to achievement of certain development, regulatory, commercial and sales-based milestones, Biotest would be eligible to receive additional milestone payments from Abbott, potentially amounting to a total of $395 million, and royalties. Biotest will be responsible for the manufacture of initial clinical supply of BT-061, and the parties will share responsibility for commercial production.

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