Pfizer Inc will return three products it was developing using Acura Pharmaceuticals Inc's abuse-resistant technology, Acura said on Friday.
The license termination, which concerns three clinical-stage products using Acura's Aversion technology, will be effective a year from Thursday, when Pfizer notified the company.
"We will evaluate our strategy for these products (being returned) over the coming months, including possible partnering with alternative strategic partners," Acura chief executive Bob Jones said in a statement.
The pharmaceutical giant will retain rights to Oxecta -- a pain management pill that also uses Acura's technology -- which is already on the market, Acura said.
Pfizer will return all assets and regulatory and clinical responsibility related to the three drugs, MacKay Jimeson, a spokesman for Pfizer, told Reuters via email.
Acura had received an aggregate of $78.5 million in payments from Pfizer as of March 31, under their 2007 license agreement.
It was eligible to receive tiered royalties of 5 percent to 25 percent on combined annual net sales of all products marketed under the agreement.
Acura will earn royalties on Oxecta sales from the first quarter of 2013.
Shares of Palatine, Illinois-based Acura closed at $3.08 on Friday on the Nasdaq. They fell to $2.60 in after-market trade.
(Reporting By Pallavi Ail in Bangalore; Editing by Roshni Menon)