Nicox acquires rights to anti-viral drop; buys French ophthalmic firm

September 23, 2014

Nicox S.A has agreed to acquire the Carragelose anti-viral eye drop program from Marinomed Biotechnologie GmbH of Austria. The acquisition will provide Nicox with an anti-viral ophthalmic product, expected to launch in Europe within 2 years and pending CE marking.

 

Sophia Antipolis, France-Nicox S.A has agreed to acquire the Carragelose anti-viral eye drop program from Marinomed Biotechnologie GmbH of Austria. The acquisition will provide Nicox with an anti-viral ophthalmic product, expected to launch in Europe within 2 years and pending CE marking.

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“The Carragelose anti-viral eye drop is an innovative approach to the management of viral conjunctivitis, and will complement our growing expertise in this area with the AdenoPlus diagnostic test,” said Gavin Spencer, executive vice president, corporate development at Nicox. “We believe Carragelose has the potential to help health-care professionals manage patients with viral conjunctivitis, an infection where there is currently no approved etiological treatment, and represents an excellent fit for our expanding portfolio of ophthalmic products."

 

 

 

Carragelose (iota-carrageenan) is a sulphated, galactose polymer derived from red seaweed with unique anti-viral properties. It is said to inhibit viruses from binding to and entering human cells, reducing viral replication and associated symptoms. Carragelose is already used in a variety of medical device products for cold and influenza including nasal sprays marketed in more than 17 countries. Nicox plans to conduct clinical studies with the Carragelose anti-viral eye drop and believes that it could potentially be available in Europe in 2016 as a medical device.

In related news, Nicox has agreed to acquire Doliage, a privately held French ophthalmic company, for €5 million. The acquisition provides Nicox with an established and profitable ophthalmic business in France, with Doliage's sales totaling €2.6 million in 2013. The acquisition is part of Nicox's strategy to develop an ophthalmic commercial infrastructure in the five major European markets and represents a logical next step after the acquisition of the Italian company Eupharmed in December 2013.

 

 

 

"We are excited to achieve this second European acquisition in less than a year, in line with our European growth strategy,” said Philippe Masquida, executive vice president and managing director of European and international operations at Nicox Pharma. “In addition to a rapidly growing and profitable portfolio of products, Doliage is providing Nicox with an established commercial platform for our own existing and future pipeline, thus enabling our group to significantly increase its revenues in France, one of the major ophthalmic markets in Europe."

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