Partnering News: Vertex, Moderna, AstraZeneca

A roundup of bio/pharmaceutical partnering news from: Vertex, Mammoth Biosciences; Moderna, Metagenomi; and AstraZeneca, Integral Molecular.

Vertex, Mammoth Biosciences in $691-M Gene-Therapy Pact
Vertex Pharmaceuticals, a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based bio/pharmaceutical company, and Mammoth Biosciences, a San Francisco-based developer of a CRISPR-based disease detection platform, have entered into a pact, worth up to $691 million ($41 million upfront and $650 million in milestone payments), to develop in vivo gene-editing therapies for two genetic diseases using Mammoth’s CRISPR systems.

Mammoth’s CRISPR platform consists of a toolbox of ultracompact Cas enzymes, including Cas14 and Casɸ. The Mammoth systems have the potential to facilitate advanced delivery, which may increase the scope of in vivo gene editing for genetic diseases.

Under the agreement, Mammoth Biosciences will receive upfront payments of $41 million, including an investment in the form of a convertible note, and is eligible to receive up to $650 million in potential future payments based upon the successful achievement of prespecified research, development and commercial milestones across two potential programs. In addition, Vertex will pay tiered royalties on future net sales on any products that may result from this collaboration.

Source: Vertex Pharmaceuticals and Mammoth Biosciences

Moderna, Metagenomi in Gene-Editing Therapies Pact
Modern and Metagenomi, an Emeryville, California-based genetic-medicines company, have entered into a strategic R&D collaboration focused on advancing new gene-editing systems for in vivo human therapeutic applications.

The collaboration will use Metagenomi’s gene-editing tools and use Moderna’s mRNA platform, as well as lipid nanoparticle (LNP) delivery technologies. Metagenomi and Moderna will advance a series of in vivo gene-editing therapeutics against undisclosed targets.

Metagenomi will receive an upfront cash payment and is eligible to receive certain target option exercise fees as well as development, regulatory, and commercial milestone payments, plus tiered royalties on net sales of any products that are commercialized by Moderna. Moderna has also agreed to make an equity investment in Metagenomi in the form of a convertible note.

Source: Moderna and Metagenomi

AstraZeneca, Integral Molecular in Oncology Antibody Pact
AstraZeneca and Integral Molecular, a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based company developing antibodies against membrane proteins, have entered into an exclusive global antibody license agreement to develop therapeutics for multiple cancers.  

Under the agreement, Integral Molecular will provide an exclusive license to AstraZeneca for a collection of specific monoclonal antibodies for use in oncology. AstraZeneca will be solely responsible for all research, development, and commercial activities.  

Source: Integral Molecular