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QLT, Inc.

Drug Names(s): OT-730, QLT091568

Description: OT-730 is a proprietary pro-drug that is converted by enzymes in the cornea into a metabolite, OT-705, a novel small molecule antagonist of beta receptors for reducing the elevated intraocular pressure associated with glaucoma.

While OT-730's metabolite is active in ocular tissues, animal studies indicate that it is rapidly converted to inactive compounds in the blood steam, thus limiting the side effects throughout the rest of the body.In preclinical experiments, Othera directly compared the systemic side effects of OT-730 to timolol, a traditional beta blocker. Animals were first dosed with an agent that activates beta-receptors in the heart and blood vessels, causing a decrease in blood pressure and an increase in heart rate. The animals were administered OT-730, timolol or placebo by eye drop. Timolol caused severe decrease in the heart rate and blood pressure due to potent systemic beta-blocking activity. In contrast, OT-730 had the same systemic effect as placebo, indicating the drug does not exhibit this undesired interaction with beta receptors in the heart and lungs.

Deal Structure: OT-730 was originally developed by Othera.

In December 2009, QLT acquired OT-730 from Othera for a one-time payment of US$7.5 million in cash.

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