Dublin-based Merrion Pharmaceuticals has signed a licensing agreement with healthcare company Novo Nordisk, which specialises in diabetes care.

The agreement is to develop and bring to the market oral forms of Novo Nordisk's GLP-1 treatment using Merrion's technology.

Merrion will receive up to $58m for the first product developed under the agreement to reach the market, though the figure will depend on certain targets being met. The companies have been collaborating since 2007.

Novo Nordisk is also subscribing for 300,000 shares in Merrion at a price of €3 per share.