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Pharmaceuticals

Medytox’s US business outlook dim as contract with AbbVie ends

The expiry of the deal on a botox candidate licensed out in 2013 clouds the Korean firm’s future in the US

By Sep 09, 2021 (Gmt+09:00)

Korean botox maker Medytox
Korean botox maker Medytox

South Korea’s pharmaceutical company Medytox Inc. has ended a botulinum toxin-related technology transfer contract with AbbVie, clouding its business outlook in the US.

AbbVie has returned the rights concerning a botulinum toxin, more commonly known as botox, candidate to Medytox, the Korean company said on Wednesday.

Medytox licensed out its technology for the candidate to Allergan plc, which is now part of AbbVie, in 2013 and granted the US biopharmaceutical firm the exclusive right to develop and commercialize the botox product in countries other than Korea.

The deal was valued at 389.8 billion won ($333 million) at the time.

Medytox will also receive all the clinical data AbbVie has acquired during the development process.

A Medytox official said the company does not have to return the upfront fee of $65 million and a milestone payment of $35 million that it received during the development process.

Botox products made by Medytox
Botox products made by Medytox

In the US market, AbbVie recently completed the administration of the botox candidate to patients in phase 3 clinical trial, according to Medytox.

The company said it has yet to decide on how to proceed with its US business going forward.

Shares of Medytox, listed on the tech-heavy Kosdaq market, were down 0.1% at 157,600 won in early Thursday trading. On Wednesday, the stock closed down 12.7%, the biggest percentage fall in nearly 10 months, at 157,800 won on news about the expiry of the licensing deal.

Write to Jae-young Han at jyhan@hankyung.com

In-Soo Nam edited this article.

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