BioMarin pledges up to $588M to Merck KGaA in rare-disease land grab

BioMarin Pharmaceutical ($BMRN) bet more than half a billion dollars on the rare disease phenylketonuria Thursday. The U.S.-based biotech will pay its development partner Merck KGaA €340 million up front for worldwide rights to Kuvan (excluding Japan), plus €60 million more in sales-related milestone payments. The deal also includes €125 million in potential milestone payments on pegvaliase, an experimental PKU treatment. That's a total of €525 million, or $588 million. Release