Fenwick & West represented Sierra Oncology, Inc. (Nasdaq: SRRA), a leading clinical stage drug development company focused on advancing targeted therapeutics for the treatment of patients with significant unmet needs in hematology and oncology, in its asset purchase of the drug candidate momelotinib from Gilead Sciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: GILD), a research-based biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of innovative medicines. Sierra will pay Gilead a $3 million upfront fee for momelotinib and potential aggregate milestone payments of up to $195 million, a value largely associated with the commercial sales of the drug, including royalties on any sales of momelotinib, which will be tiered based on commercial success with royalty rates ranging from the mid-teens to high-twenties. Sierra will assume all currently ongoing clinical studies with momelotinib following a transition period.
Adding momelotinib, an investigational Janus kinas (JAK) 1/2 and activating receptor type 1 (ACVR1) inhibitor for myelofibrosis, to the existing pipeline of next generation oncology drug candidates, SRA737 and SRA141, helps establish Sierra as a diversified late-stage drug development company with a commercial orientation. More information about Sierra’s acquisition of momelotinib from Gilead Sciences can be obtained from the company press release.
The Fenwick transaction team included corporate lawyers Stephen Graham, Kee Kim, Amanda Rose and Jane Jiang; technology transactions lawyer Jake Handy; antitrust lawyer Ashley Walter; and tax lawyer Will Skinner.