Alnylam grants GeneCare anticancer license
Detailed financial terms were not disclosed, but include upfront, annual and milestone payments, all in cash, and royalties on sales of any products that result from the licensing agreement. In addition, Alnylam retains the right to negotiate co-development and co-promotion arrangements for such products in the US. Alnylam believes RNAi has the potential to become the basis for a broad new class of drugs to treat multiple diseases. The company created the InterfeRx program to grant licenses under this intellectual property to biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies wishing to pursue RNAi therapeutics against specific targets outside Alnylam's core strategic interests. "With its unique expertise in particular targets, GeneCare is exactly the type of licensee we had in mind when we created the InterfeRx program," said Dr Vincent Miles, senior vice president of business development at Alnylam. "We are delighted to have GeneCare as the first of what we expect to be many participants in our InterfeRx program." GeneCare, based in Kamakura, is focused on target validation, drug discovery, and drug development activities in oncology and other disease areas. Under the license granted by Alnylam, GeneCare has exclusive rights to investigate RNAi therapeutics directed against two specific genes belonging to the RecQ DNA helicase gene family that are believed to be relevant to the treatment of cancer and possibly other human diseases.