As part of plans to expand its respiratory franchise, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries is to acquire the USA's MicroDose Therapeutx in a deal that could be worth $165 billion.

Under the terms of the deal, the Israeli drugmaker will acquire all of privately-held MicroDose's outstanding shares for $40 million and make additional payments of up to $125 million. Those are dependent on the achievement of regulatory and development milestones, plus sales and tiered royalties linked principally to MDT-637 for respiratory syncytial virus and an earlier-stage asthma/chronic obstructive pulmonary disease medicine.

MDT-637 is an inhaled, low-dose, small molecule, fusion inhibitor for RSV which prevents viral replication. It is delivered via MicroDose's technology, which includes a multi-dose dry powder nebuliser device, which requires no preparation and can be administered in under 30 seconds.

Michael Hayden, Teva's chief scientific officer, said that the MicroDose platform "is both simple and attractive, and their addition will help us to address the unmet needs of the youngest and oldest patients who have a requirement for a better way of taking the medicines they rely upon".

Teva is already strong in the respiratory field and first-quarter sales were up 15% at $219 million.