Roche has ended its agreement with Ligand Pharma after two years.
The two firms signed a collaboration and license agreement to develop new treatments for hepatitis C viral infections in 2008, but Roche is exercising its right to terminate the agreement.
Roche made a $6.5 million (4.1 million pounds) milestone payment to Ligand in April this year, following the initiation of the RG7348 Phase I clinical trial.
Under the terms of the agreement, Ligand will now receive a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-bearing license under specified Roche patents to develop and sell related compounds and products.
Roche will be unable to develop or commercialise related compounds for the next ten years.
Ligand received notice of the termination on Friday November 19th 2010. It is expected that the termination will be in effect 60 days after written notice was given.
Earlier this month, it was reported that Roche has embarked on a strategic partnership with Capital Bio, targeting molecular diagnostic applications and the development of research technologies.