Royalty Pharma and Ionis Pharmaceuticals announced Monday morning a royalty agreement for up to $1.1 billion for Ionis’ royalty stakes in Biogen’s Spinraza and Novartis’ pelacarsen

As part of the agreement, Royalty acquired an interest in Ionis’ Spinraza royalty for an upfront payment of $500 million and an interest in pelacarsen for up to $625 million. 

Spinraza is a treatment for people living with spinal muscular atrophy while pelacarsen is a potential first-in-class treatment targeting elevated lipoprotein(a), which is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.

Royalty will receive 25% of Ionis’ Spinraza royalty payments through 2027 and it will increase to 45% of royalty payments in 2028 on up to $1.5 billion in annual sales. Royalty will also see its interest in Spinraza revert to Ionis after the total payments reach either $475 million or $550 million.

Additionally, Royalty will receive 25% of Ionis’ pelacarsen royalty payments.

“SPINRAZA has transformed the lives of thousands of SMA patients,” Royalty Pharma CEO Pablo Legorreta said in a statement. “We are also excited to acquire a royalty on pelacarsen which, if approved, has the potential to be a practice-changing, first-in-class therapy benefiting millions of cardiovascular disease patients by lowering Lp(a).”

Meanwhile, Ionis is entitled to tiered royalties up to the mid-teens on annual worldwide net sales of Spinraza, while it is slated to receive tiered royalties in the mid-teens to low 20% ranges on net sales of pelacarsen. 

“This transaction provides us with significant capital to reach our strategic objectives, the first of which is to achieve commercial readiness for our late-stage programs eplontersen, olezarsen and donidalorsen,” Ionis CEO Brett P. Monia, PhD, said in a statement. “It also enables us to further advance our deep and innovative pipeline so that we can continue to deliver a steady cadence of new genetic medicines to the market.”

The royalties agreement comes two months after Royalty Pharma acquired an interest in Olpasiran from Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals for $250 million. Royalty will pay cash upfront plus up to $160 million in additional payments contingent on hitting clinical, regulatory and sales milestones. For its part, Ionis released its Q3 2022 earnings report in November, highlighted by a revenue beat.