Eli Lilly has told PharmaTimes World News that drugs worth $75 million have been stolen in a “brazen” raid on one of its US warehouses.

Thieves broke into the Lilly facility in Enfield, Connecticut, which at the time was being hit by storms. It appears that the burglars cut a hole in the roof of the building and took the drugs. The company has not disclosed which treatments have been stolen but the theft is not expected to lead to any material financial impact or significant shortages of the drug major’s products.

Lilly spokesman Ed Sagebiel,told PharmaTimes World News that this was “a brazen, well-planned crime”. He added that the company is “cooperating with both local and federal authorities” and “we believe our collective efforts will result in the seizure of our stolen medicines”.

Axiron licensed in $335 million deal

Meantime, Lilly has signed a deal with Australia’s Acrux which gives it rights to the experimental underarm testosterone solution Axiron, which is currently under regulatory review by the US Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of hypogonadism.

Under the terms of the agreement, Acrux will receive an upfront payment of $50 million plus $3 million on the transfer of manufacturing assets. It is also eligible for $87 million once the FDA gives the thumbs-up and up to $195 million in commercialisation milestones, as well as royalties.

Bryce Carmine, president of Lilly's Bio-Medicines unit, said the firm hopes to “leverage our experience in men's health to advance both the science and clinical outcomes for men with low testosterone”. There is a need for “a convenient way to administer therapy over a small and discreet area of the body”, he added, and Axiron “has the potential to be the first testosterone solution to be applied via an underarm applicator, for patients who have testosterone deficiency”.