StockMarketWire.com - AstraZeneca said it had agreed to sell the commercial rights to its schizophrenia and bipolar disorder drugs in the US and Canada to Cheplapharm Arzneimittel for up to $41m.

AstraZeneca would continue to manufacture and supply Seroquel and Seroquel XR - both of which lost their compound patent protection in the US and Canada - to Cheplapharm during a transition period.

'This divestment supports our strategy of reducing the number of mature medicines to enable reinvestment in our main therapy areas,' said Ruud Dobber, executive vice president, biopharmaceuticals business unit.

Under the terms of the deal, Cheplapharm would make an upfront payment of $35m to AstraZeneca and may also make future sales-contingent payments of up to $6m. At 8:04am: [LON:AZN] AstraZeneca PLC share price was -52p at 7370p



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