Nicholas Piramal, Merck in drug discovery deal

Nicholas Piramal, Merck in drug discovery deal

Mumbai: Drug maker Nicholas Piramal India Ltd said on Monday it has entered into an agreement to discover and develop two oncology targets for US-based Merck & Co Inc, sending its shares up.

The firm will be eligible to receive milestone payments of up to $175 million per target and royalties on sales of any drug resulting from the collaboration, it said in a statement.

Nicholas Piramal will carry out the drug discovery programme up to human clinic trials and Merck has the option to advance the drug candidates to late stage clinical trials and commercialize them, it said.

Shares in Nicholas Piramal, which touched a high of Rs318 on the news, were trading 6.7% up at Rs311.25 in the Mumbai market.