Roche continues to cut away the dead wood in its development portfolio -- consistent with its cost saving - operational excellence program goals outlined last week. This is coupled with plant closings and layoffs as well to trim the fat from its operations.
In this case, Roche cut ties with Ligand on the development of new drugs to treat hepatitis C infection. Roche had been working under a deal to utilize Ligand's Metabasis' liver targetting technology in new therapies against the disease. As part of the severance agreement, Roche agrees not to develop any similar drugs for the next 10 years. Roche killed the partnership despite paying a $6.5 M milestone payment this past spring. Ligand was only informed of the decision this past Friday. See Fierce Biotech.
Posted by Bruce Lehr November 24th 2010.