KindredBio Sells Mirataz as Part of a Restructuring


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The biopharmaceutical developer, KindredBio will concentrate on drug research and leave the selling to other companies.

Eight years after its founding, Kindred Biosciences Inc. is undergoing a transformation, agreeing to sell its Mirataz feline weight-management drug to Dechra Pharmaceuticals PLC for $43 million and looking to other companies to market and sell the veterinary biopharmaceuticals it develops.

The changes announced March 16 put the San Francisco company on a firmer financial footing as it scales back commercial endeavors, cuts the workforce by one-third and focuses on new products.

“Given the amount that partners are willing to pay for our assets and the richness of our pipeline, we have recognized that we can likely achieve better returns for our shareholders while reducing dilutive financing by relying more on a partnership-focused business model,” said KindredBio CEO Richard Chin, M.D. “This model has been very successful in the human pharmaceutical industry, and we expect the same for the veterinary industry.”

Mirataz (mirtazapine transdermal ointment) was KindredBio’s first commercial product, achieving net sales of $4.1 million in 2019 after a July 2018 launch.

As Mirataz’s new owner, Dechra agreed to ongoing royalty payments and plans to begin selling the product across the United Kingdom and European Union. The deal is expected to close by late June.

KindredBio will roll its equine products, including the recently approved pyrexia drug Zimeta (dipyrone injection), into a subsidiary company, KindredBio Equine. Also in the equine portfolio and under development are KIND-012 (dipyrone oral gel), KIND-014 for gastric ulcers and KIND-015 for metabolic syndrome.

The revised blueprint calls for KindredBio to “further prioritize biologics programs for dogs and cats and discontinue development of canine and feline small molecule programs,” according to a news release.

“We clearly have more attractive opportunities than we can pursue,” Dr. Chin said. “While our small molecule programs are very promising, we have decided to devote our resources to the part of the business where we can create the most value and where we have the clearest competitive advantage.

“We believe monoclonal antibodies are the future of veterinary medicine, and given significant market opportunities for our biologics programs, provide the greatest potential for value creation.”

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