Novartis is expanding the Swiss pharma giant’s optogenetics portfolio with the acquisition of gene therapy company Arctos Medical.

Swiss pharma giant Roche announced a partnership with Shape Therapeutics valued at more than $3 billion that will attempt to harness the Seattle-based company’s RNA editing platform to take on neurodegenerative diseases as well as others.

Shape Therapeutics generated $112 million from a recent Series B financing round the Seattle biotechnology firm co-led with Decheng Capital and Breton Capital.

Working through two subsidiaries, life sciences giant Bayer is taking multiple shots at Parkinson’s disease. In addition to Bayer’s efforts to tackle Parkinson’s, Adhera Therapeutics announced that the company will acquire a new class of drug aimed at the disease.

Biogen reported that the company’s gene therapy, cotoretigene toliparvovec, failed to hit the primary endpoint of the Phase II/III XIRIUS trial for X-linked retinitis pigmentosa (XLRP).

Biogen and Capsigen forged a strategic collaboration to engineer novel adeno-associated virus (AAV) capsids that have the potential to become transformative gene therapies that treat underlying genetic causes of various central nervous system and neuromuscular disorders.

BioSpace takes a look at a few of the highlights of the 24th annual meeting of the ASGCT, with researchers presenting cutting-edge work in the booming area of gene and cell therapy.

BioSpace takes a look at Series A financing rounds for several biotech companies: San Francisco-based Esker Therapeutics; England’s Mogrify Limited; Duke University spinout Isolere Bio; and Sunnyvale, California-based BridGene Biosciences.

A roundup of biopharma news and updates includes Merck and Eisai’s Keytruda-Lenvima combo hitting the mark in a Phase III study for advanced endometrial cancer.

UCB S.A. is flexing the company’s M&A muscles once again with the acquisition of Handl Therapeutics BV, a rapidly growing and transformative gene therapy company based in Leuven, Belgium.