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Melanocortin Receptor Obesity Program

Palatin Technologies has an exclusive global licensing and research collaboration agreement with AstraZeneca, a major international pharmaceutical and healthcare business, to discover, develop and commercialize compounds that target melanocortin-4 receptors for the treatment of obesity, diabetes and related metabolic syndrome.

AstraZeneca is developing collaboration compounds for the treatment of obesity.  Development of one product under the AstraZeneca collaboration, AZD2820, has been discontinued following a serious adverse event in a Phase 1 trial. It could not be confirmed or excluded that the serious adverse event was linked to AZD2820.  AstraZeneca remains committed to the collaboration program and to the continued advancement of melanocortin agonists for treatment of obesity.

Obesity is a global problem, with the World Health Organization estimating that over 1.5 billion adults are overweight and over 500 million are obese. Worldwide obesity has more than doubled since 1980. A number of different metabolic and hormonal pathways are being evaluated by companies around the world in efforts to develop better treatments for obesity. Scientific research has established that melanocortin receptors have a role in eating behavior and energy homeostasis, and that some melanocortin receptor agonists decrease food intake and induce weight loss in animal studies.

The collaboration, based on Palatin’s melanocortin-4 receptor program for the treatment of obesity, provided AstraZeneca access to compound libraries, core technologies and expertise in melanocortin receptor drug discovery and development.

Pursuant to the terms of the research collaboration and license agreement with AstraZeneca, Palatin is eligible for milestone payments upon achieving development and regulatory milestones and further payments on achievement of sales targets, in addition to royalties on sales of approved products. AstraZeneca has responsibility for product commercialization, product discovery and development costs.