Gilead Sciences says that it is seeking to end its co-promotion agreement with Roche for the anti-flu pill, Tamiflu (oseltamivir), saying that the Swiss giant had “not adequately demonstrated the requisite commitment to Tamiflu since its launch in the United States nearly six years ago.”

In a statement, the US company accused Roche of “material breaches” of its obligations under the terms of the agreement, which was originally signed back in 1996. Gilead’s notice of termination claims that Roche failed to adequately commercialise and promote Tamiflu and launch it in a number of markets where it had been approved. It also said that the Swiss company had failed to properly calculate and pay royalties due to Gilead. In addition, Gilead said that Roche had problems manufacturing the drug. Gilead said that the problems had persisted in spite of “repeated communication of concerns over the last several years.”

Termination of the agreement would result in the rights to Tamiflu, currently held by Roche, reverting to Gilead. The drug saw sales quadruple during the three months to 424 million Swiss francs [[19/04/05b]].