Lonza in Gene-Therapy Pact

Lonza, Massachusetts Eye and Ear (MEE), a specialty hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, and Akouos, a Boston-based biotechnology company, have signed license agreements for exclusive rights to Lonza and MEE’s ancestral adeno-associated viral vectors (Anc-AAV) gene-therapy platform for all hearing and balance disorders.

The agreement with Akouos is designed to accelerate AAV gene therapy for hearing and balance disorders. It builds on the existing Anc-AAV partnership between MEE and Lonza.

Akouos plans to build a gene-therapy company focused on hearing and balance disorders with the close of a $7.5-million seed round led by venture capital firms, including 5AM Ventures and New Enterprise Associates (NEA) with participation from Partners Innovation Fund. Kush Parmar, managing partner at 5AM Ventures, and Ed Mathers, partner at NEA, join the Akouos board of directors as a result of the investment.

Concurrent with the financing, Akouos entered into the Anc-AAV gene therapy license agreements with Lonza and MEE.

Source: Lonza

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