Novartis Strikes Liver Disease Deal and Buys Encore Vision

Dec. 20, 2016

Novartis is closing the year out strong, as the drugmaker signs a licensing deal to co-develop a fatty liver disease drug with Conatus Pharmaceuticals, as well as announces a buyout of Texas opthalmology startup, Encore Vision.

The $50 million up front agreement with California-based Conatus will enable the companies to jointly develop Conatus' drug, emricasan, an experimental first-in-class oral treatment for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) with advanced fibrosis and cirrhosis.

The Encore Vision purchase, of which the financials were not disclosed, will enable Novartis to focus on developing a novel treatment for presbyopia -- far-sightedness -- giving Novartis access to Encore's lead investigational product EV06, an innovative topical treatment for presbyopia.