Merck in deal with Celera
11 April 2008 00:00 in Pharmaceutical Company Product News
Celera, a subsidiary of Applera Corporation, has confirmed a two-year deal with Merck for access to up to ten cancer targets for the development of RNA-interference (RNAi) based therapeutics.
This type of therapeutics selectively catalyse destruction of RNA from an individual gene, enabling a novel approach to drug discovery. The targets are over-expressed on the surface of several different tumour cell types.
Steve Reuben, vice-president of proteomic research at Celera said: "This new agreement combines the strength of our novel proteomics target discovery and validation capability with Merck's expertise in developing RNAi based therapeutics."
He added that the new relationship extends the firm's ongoing therapeutic development collaborations.
Celera will be paid by Merck for exclusive access to the ten targets as well as for development and commercial milestones. Royalties on selected targets will also be paid.
Merck, meanwhile, has the option to extend the exclusivity period or and more targets to the agreement.
Last month, Celera worked completed work with Leiden University for the discovery of the genetic markers associated with deep vein thrombosis.
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