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ISIS Diversifies Concentrated Revenue Sources with Biogen Idec Agreement

|Includes: BIIB, Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (IONS)

Isis Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: ISIS) announced on Wednesday that it had entered into a collaboration agreement with Biogen Idec (NASDAQ: BIIB) to develop and commercialize Isis’ investigational drug, ISIS-SMNRx. While the drug is just beginning Phase 1 clinical studies, the agreement helps diversify ISIS’ concentrated potential revenue base.

As of the 10-Q filed 8-Nov-11, ISIS had one commercially approved drug, Vitravene, which is no longer marketed due to a decrease in the incidence of the disorder it treated. Collaboration agreements with Genzyme and GlaxoSmithKline accounted for 75% and 16% of 9M11 total revenue, respectively. Total revenue in the period, which amounted to $66.7 million, represented approximately 56% of operating expenses.

Under the terms of the agreement with BIIB, ISIS will receive a $29 million upfront payment, up to $270 million in milestone and license fee payments, and a “double-digit” royalty on any sales of a resulting marketable product.

ISIS-SMNRx is an investigational drug for the treatment of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a severe genetic disease. ISIS initiated the first Phase 1 clinical trial for the drug in Dec-11. SMA affects approximately 30,000 - 35,000 patients in the U.S., Europe, and Japan.

Here is the press release regarding the agreement.