Prometheus Labs Acquires Right to Novartis Kidney Cancer Drug

Prometheus Laboratories Inc., a San Diego-based drug and diagnostics company, has acquired U.S. licensing rights to Proleukin, a treatment in adults with metastatic melanoma and metastatic kidney cancer, from Novartis. No pricing terms were disclosed for the deal, which includes an up-front fee and possible milestone payments. Net U.S. sales last year for Proleukin were $75 million.

Prometheus is in registration for a $100 million IPO, and has raised around $73 million in VC funding from DLJ Merchant Banking Partners (21.4% stake), Split Rock Partners (17.4%), New Leaf Ventures (12.5%), Apax Partners (11%) , Wachovia Capital Partners (11%) and Brentwood Venture Capital (7.5%).

PRESS RELEASE

Prometheus Laboratories Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical and diagnostic company, today announced the execution of a commercialization agreement with Novartis under which Prometheus acquired exclusive rights to distribute, promote and sell PROLEUKIN® (aldesleukin) in the United States. Proleukin is a recombinant human interleukin-2 for treatment in adults with metastatic melanoma and metastatic kidney cancer. Net sales for Proleukin were approximately $75 million in the U.S. in 2009.

Under the terms of the agreement, Novartis received an upfront fee and will receive royalties on net sales of Proleukin in the U.S. Novartis is also eligible to receive potential sales milestone payments. Prometheus will have the option to extend the initial six-year term on an annual basis for up to an additional six years. In addition, the companies will have an option to amend the agreement to include the rest of the world upon the completion of certain conditions.

“This represents a transformational event for Prometheus as we continue to build our oncology presence and execute on our integrated therapeutics and diagnostics business model,” said Joseph M. Limber, President and Chief Executive Officer of Prometheus. “We have established ourselves as a leader in the gastroenterology market by offering a complementary portfolio of pharmaceutical and diagnostic products promoted via Prometheus’ highly trained sales force. Now, following the recent launch of our three ProOncDx microRNA-based diagnostic tests and the continued development of our emerging and proprietary diagnostics platform, we are well positioned to repeat this success in the oncology market.”

A portion of the proceeds from Prometheus’ previously announced $260 million Senior Secured Credit Facility was used to finance this transaction.

About Proleukin

PROLEUKIN® (aldesleukin) for injection is a recombinant human interleukin-2 for treatment in adults with metastatic melanoma and metastatic kidney cancer. Proleukin therapy is a form of immunotherapy that enhances the body’s natural immune system to help fight these types of cancer. Proleukin has been used for over 10 years in the treatment of metastatic melanoma and over 15 years in the treatment of metastatic kidney cancer (renal cell carcinoma). For complete prescribing information, please visit www.Proleukin.com.

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