Bayer and Evotec have signed a five-year, multi-target research pact to develop multiple clinical candidates for the treatment of chronic kidney diseases.

Both parties will contribute novel drug targets and a comprehensive set of high-quality technology platforms to jointly develop innovative treatment options for patients, and will share responsibilities during preclinical development.

Under the terms of the deal, Bayer will receive exclusive access to selected candidates as well as to Evotec's CureNephron target pipeline, and is responsible for clinical development and commercialisation.

Evotec will receive a minimum of 14 million euros over the contract period, including research payments and an undisclosed license fee, and also stands to receive preclinical, clinical and sales milestones of potentially over 300 million euros as well as tiered royalties up to low double-digit percentage of net sales.

"Chronic kidney disease is a severe medical condition with insufficient treatment options for many patients. This new research alliance with Evotec will perfectly complement Bayer's current research activities in this area of high unmet medical need," said Professor Andreas Busch, member of the executive committee of Bayer AG's Pharmaceuticals Division and head of Drug Discovery.

Bayer and Evotec already have a five-year partnership in place for endometriosis. Currently in its fourth year, this alliance has delivered four preclinical candidates and one first-in-class clinical programme has been initiated, the firms noted.