Cidara Therapeutics and Mundipharma have formed a strategic partnership to develop and commercialise Rezafungin (CD101).

The drug is a novel, once-weekly echinocandin antifungal being developed for the first-line treatment of candidemia and invasive candidiasis, as well as for the prophylaxis of invasive fungal infections.

The indication is specifically for patients undergoing allogeneic blood and marrow transplantation, for which no new therapies have been approved in over 13 years.

The partnership agreement follows the company’s recent announcement of the successful completion of its STRIVE B Phase II trial.

Under the terms of the agreement, in exchange for granting Mundipharma exclusive commercialisation rights to the drug outside the US and Japan, Cidara will receive a $30 million upfront payment.

The total transaction value could exceed $568 million, and the companies may pursue additional indications or formulations of Rezafungin.

“This is a transformational collaboration for Cidara, and we look forward to working closely with our colleagues at Mundipharma," said Jeffrey Stein, president and chief executive officer of the company.

“Mundipharma is particularly well positioned globally with established hospital and haematology/oncology business units to fully leverage the commercial potential of Rezafungin. Through this partnership, both companies fully commit to advancing rezafungin and helping to save the lives of patients who are highly vulnerable to these deadly infections.”

Invasive fungal infections represent a serious threat to millions of patients worldwide, resulting in more than 1.5 million deaths annually and mortality rates ranging from 15% to 65%. These infections continue to be a global health issue, especially for critically ill patients in hospitals and patients with compromised immune systems, including cancer and transplant patients.