Deal worth up to $2bn gives BMS full rights to Phase II clinical candidate

Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) has agreed to buy US heart drug specialist Cardioxyl Pharmaceuticals for $300 million (£195 million) up front, plus up to $1.8 billion contingent on reaching development and regulatory milestones.

The deal gives BMS full rights to develop CXL-1427, an experimental drug for acute decompensated heart failure, currently in Phase II clinical trials. The molecule releases nitroxyl (HNO), which dilates blood vessels and improves heart function. The company also has related HNO-releasing agents in preclinical testing.

This is the latest of severaldeals by BMS, including buying gene therapy cardiology specialist uniQure. That said, the majority of recent acquisitions have been aimed at immunotherapy for cancer rather than cardiology.