Biogen Shores Up Gene Therapy Ambitions With New Deal
Biogen Inc. has furthered its gene therapy ambitions by entering into a broad alliance with the University of Pennsylvania that could see it paying out up to $2bn in research funding and other payments. Biogen has made a series of moves over the past couple of years to build up its gene therapy research.
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With no buyers in the hemophilia space and a need to create a more streamlined company, Biogen Inc. announced May 3 that it has done the only thing it can – spin out its hemophilia business. It's still unclear whether this will be a positive strategy for either company.
Having netted $148m in its September initial public offering, REGENXBIO, Inc. is moving toward the clinic with its first two gene therapy candidates and believes it – and its licensees – are positioned to succeed in gene therapy where earlier attempts failed. Coming out of a "quiet period" after its IPO, which sold 7.2 million shares at $22 apiece, REGENXBIO CEO Kenneth Mills talked to Scrip's sister publication "The Pink Sheet" DAILY about his company's plans and strategies, as well as why its novel adeno-associated virus (NAV) vectors might be more viable than the first iteration of AAV-based therapies.
Sangamo Biosciences touted the progress of its in vivo protein replacement platform (IVPRP) as it reported that Shire relinquished its rights to hemophilia programs under the companies' three-year-old collaboration, but investors were wary about the loss of an important alliance for two out or four partnered programs as well as the exchange of milestone fees for total control of preclinical assets.