Roche signs neurological pact with UK's MRC
MRC Technology and Genentech, a wholly owned member of the Roche Group, have signed an exclusive license agreement for the discovery of a series of small molecule drug candidates for the treatment of neurological disease.
As per the terms of the agreement, Genentech is expected to provide MRC Technology an upfront payment and also provide clinical development milestone payments and royalties on sales.
MRC Technology claimed that this is the first small molecule chemistry programme evolved from its Centre for Therapeutics Discovery (CTD) and the first small molecule collaboration the CTD has formed.
MRC Technology's CTD initiated a small molecule drug discovery programme that included medicinal chemistry, biology, analytical and DMPK computational chemistry, by working with investigators funded through Medical Research Council of UK.
Dave Tapolczay, CEO of MRC Technology, said: "We are delighted that we have been able to partner this programme with Genentech, and pleased that the terms of our agreement reflect the value of the small molecule drug discovery programme and support our business model.
"We can collaborate with other technology transfer organisations, on a shared risk basis, to develop small molecule drug discovery programmes and targets with therapeutic potential.
"When the resulting clinical candidate is subsequently licensed, both parties will not only accomplish their translational research aims, but also share in its commercial success going forward."
Founded more than 30 years ago, Genentech is a leading
biotechnology company that discovers, develops, manufactures and
commercializes medicines to treat patients with serious or life-threatening
medical conditions. The company, a member of the Roche Group,
has headquarters in South San Francisco, California. For additional
information about the company, please visit www.gene.com.
About Medical Research Council Technology (MRC Technology)
MRC Technology is the exclusive commercialisation agent for
the UK Medical Research Council, working to translate cutting edge scientific
discoveries into commercial products. It is now the most successful academic
healthcare technology transfer organization in the world (AUTM Licensing
MRC Technology bridges the gap between innovative basic
science and making medicine. It works to provide drug-like candidate
molecules to innovative new drug targets, and to translate innovative
antibody-based drug targets into potent and selective therapeutic antibody
candidates giving pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies new starting
points for drug discovery and development, based on MRC advances in science.
MRC Technology's Centre for Therapeutics Discovery (CTD)
collaborates with academic scientists to develop drug discovery projects
targeting diseases for which there is significant unmet need. It applies
state of the art computational and medicinal chemistry to produce "drug-like"
molecules with the potential to become therapies. Scientists from academia
benefit from the wealth of the CTD's expertise including provision of tool
compounds and reagents (including monoclonal antibodies) for further target
validation and characterization studies, in silico screening, and access to
medicinal chemistry, screening technologies and ADMET. CTD will also provide
academia access to its hybridoma production capability and its extensive
antibody engineering and expression expertise as well as its core antibody
humanization skills. This initiative will also enable UK scientists to tap
into MRC's recently announced Developmental Pathway Funding Scheme (DPFS) and
collaborate with a high quality drug discovery capability whilst retaining
existing IP ownership.