SurModics, Merck to collaborate

July 10, 2007

Eden Prairie, MN-SurModics Inc. and Merck & Co. Inc. have formed a license and research collaboration to pursue the joint development and commercialization of SurModics’ intravitreal implant offering sustained-release delivery of triamcinolone acetonide (I-vation TA) and other products that combine Merck proprietary drug compounds with the drug-delivery system to treat retinal diseases.

Eden Prairie, MN-SurModics Inc. and Merck & Co. Inc. have formed a license and research collaboration to pursue the joint development and commercialization of SurModics’ intravitreal implant offering sustained-release delivery of triamcinolone acetonide (I-vation TA) and other products that combine Merck proprietary drug compounds with the drug-delivery system to treat retinal diseases.

Under the terms of the agreement, Merck will lead and fund the development and commercialization activities and will pay SurModics an up-front licensing fee of $20 million. SurModics may receive up to $288 million more in fees if development is successful and if U.S. and European Union regulatory approvals occur. In addition, Merck will reimburse SurModics for its development activities and will pay royalties to SurModics based on product sales. SurModics will be responsible for manufacturing and supplying clinical and commercial products.

“[This] announcement is an important milestone in the history of SurModics and marks the first license of our sustained drug-delivery platforms in the ophthalmology market,” said Bruce Barclay, president and chief executive officer of SurModics.

The implant is being studied in a phase I human clinical trial, the Sustained Triamcinolone Release for Inhibition of Diabetic Macular Edema study, under an investigational new drug application with the FDA. Nine-month data were presented in May at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology annual meeting.