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Lilly licenses new Cialis use to Maryland firm

November 17, 2008

Eli Lilly and Co. has licensed the U.S. rights to commercialize its drug Cialis to treat high blood pressure in the pulmonary artery to United Therapeutics Corp., a Maryland-based biotech drug firm.

Indianapolis-based Lilly will buy $150 million of United Therapeutics' common stock, but also receive a $150 million upfront payment from United Therapeutics, according to a statement posted today on the Maryland company's Web site.

Cialis, known scientifically as tadalafil, is approved to treat impotence. But Lilly has asked regulators in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Japan and the European Union to approve it to treat high blood pressure in the lungs as well.

Lilly will manufacture and supply tadalafil to United Therapeutics and will retain authority globally for all regulatory, development, intellectual property and manufacturing aspects of the tadalafil molecule for all potential uses.

Lilly also will retain rights to commercialization tadalafil for hypertension in the lungs outside of the U.S.

The transaction must receive approval under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act.
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