Vyrix Forms Partnership to Commercialize Premature Ejaculation Drug

A Colorado-based drug company has formed a partnership with a Canadian pharmaceutical company to commercialize its drug for premature ejaculation.

Vyrix Pharmaceuticals has signed an agreement with Paladin Labs to market and sell tramadol (Zertane) in Canada, South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America.

Vyrix is a wholly owned subsidiary of Ampio Pharmaceuticals (NYSE: AMPE), a pharmaceutical company based in Greenwood Village, CO. Ampio spun off Vyrix in 2013 to focus on commercializing sexual dysfunction drugs while Ampio continues to develop treatments for osteoarthritis of the knee and macular degeneration caused by diabetes.

Vyrix and Paladin are not disclosing financial details of the partnership, a spokesman for the companies said. Vyrix will receive an upfront payment and potential payments if it reaches milestones such as approval and revenue targets.

“Our agreement with Paladin is consistent with Vyrix’s global commercialization strategy focused on developing partnerships with established companies that are dominant in key international markets and have a specialty that aligns with Zertane to maximize its visibility,” Vyrix president and CEO Jarrett Disbrow said in a release.

Vyrix also has partnerships in South Korea and Brazil.

Tramadol is an opioid painkiller that has been used for decades and is available as a generic in the U.S. Vyrix believes it has found a non-standard dose that is effective for treating premature ejaculation. Zertane has been the subject of six clinical trials in Europe, but it has yet to be approved in the U.S. Vyrix expects to submit the drug for registration in Canada and start a U.S. trial this year.

If Zertane is approved by the FDA, it would be the first drug approved to treat premature ejaculation, although certain types of antidepressants have been used on an off label basis. Vyrix has plans to combine Zertane with an anti-erectile dysfunction drug.

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