Bionomics has announced an agreement with Merck to discover and develop novel small molecule candidates for the treatment of chronic pain, including neuropathic pain. The initial period of the research program will be two years.
Merck will have the option to exclusively license a compound from Bionomics for development and commercialization. In return, Bionomics may receive option exercise fees and development and regulatory milestone payments of up to $172 million. Bionomics also may be eligible for royalties on net sales of products from the collaboration. Bionomics retains the right to develop and commercialize certain compounds for which Merck does not exercise its option.
Bionomics will use its ionX drug discovery platform and MultiCore chemistry to identify potential drug candidates.