The patch will contain treprostinil, which is already available in other forms.
Both companies have been working on ways to improve the administration of the compound. United developed a continuous pump system for the intravenous delivery of treprostinil, and is trying to make it better. The system delivers an approved version of treprostinil known as Remodulin.
The patch will administer treprostinil prodrugs, or medications that turn into their active compounds once they enter the body.
“Both of our companies are committed to developing therapies that meaningfully improve the lives of patients suffering from PAH,” he added.
Under the deal, Corsair will continue to develop the skin patch. United will hold the rights to the patch, giving Corsair royalties from sales. Another part of the agreement is that United has the option to acquire the remaining shares of Corsair that it does not own.
United is developing both a newer version of its pump system, which it calls RemoPro, and pain-free formulations of the treatment. Current pump systems require the medication reservoir to be refilled each month. The refilling causes pain as the catheter is moved to a different site. The new pump and formulation prevent the pain, United said.
Corsair said its patch delivers similar levels of its treprostinil prodrug CO-254 to the blood as an infusion pump.
Once CO-254 crosses the skin to enter the blood, it goes to the liver, where it is transformed into active treprostinil. CO-254, which no biological activity of its own, could be an option for patients unable to tolerate continuous infusions.
Treprostinil is also available as an oral formulation under the brand name Orenitram and as an inhaled formulation known as Tyvaso.