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Cell Therapeutics To Buy World-wide Rights To S*BIO's Pacritinib - Quick Facts

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4/19/2012 1:39 AM ET

Cell Therapeutics, Inc.(CTIC: Quote) said it entered into an asset purchase agreement with S*BIO Pte Ltd. pursuant to which Cell Therapeutics would acquire world-wide rights to S*BIO's pacritinib, a highly selective JAK2 inhibitor.

Pacritinib is an oral Janus Associated Kinase 2, or JAK2, selective inhibitor that has demonstrated encouraging clinical benefit in phase 1 and 2 clinical studies in patients with primary myelofibrosis, or MF or MF secondary to other myeloproliferative neoplasms. Pacritinib has orphan drug designation in the U.S. and Europe for myelofibrosis.

Pursuant to the terms of the agreement, Cell Therapeutics will make an upfront payment of $15 million and issue $15 million shares of unregistered preferred stock convertible into common stock in Cell Therapeutics. The agreement also includes regulatory success- and sales-based milestone payments, as well as single digit royalties on net sales. Cell Therapeutics will be solely responsible for development and commercialization activities of pacritinib worldwide.

"JAK2 dysregulation is associated with a broad range of difficult-to-treat illnesses, including cancers and autoimmune diseases, and is one of the most exciting potential new targets in cancer therapy today," said James Bianco, CEO of Cell Therapeutics, Inc.

"We believe a highly selective JAK2 inhibitor that also inhibits the JAK2 clonal mutation (JAK2V617F) offers a distinct biological and clinical advantage over marketed or development stage compounds which are non-selective inhibitors of the JAK pathway. We believe that the lack of suppression of red blood cell and platelet formation seen with pacritinib has the potential to satisfy a medical need not currently addressed with existing non-selective JAK1/JAK2 inhibitors."

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by RTT Staff Writer

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