Roche partners with Ascidian Therapeutics to develop gene therapies

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Roche partners with Ascidian Therapeutics to develop gene therapies

June 18 (Reuters) – Swiss drugmaker Roche (ROG.S) will team up with privately held biotech Ascidian Therapeutics to develop gene therapies targeting difficult to treat neurological diseases, the Boston-based startup said on Tuesday.

WHY IT’S IMPORTANT

Roche is pursuing several therapeutic fields to offset falling oncology sales, setting a high deal pace to restore its development pipeline that was hit by major trial setbacks in Alzheimer’s and cancer immunotherapy in 2022.

Under the agreement, Roche gets exclusive rights to Ascidian’s RNA exon editing technology to develop therapies for undisclosed neurological diseases.

BY THE NUMBERS

Ascidian will receive an initial payment of $42 million and up to $1.8 billion in research, clinical, and commercial milestone payments. It is also eligible to receive royalties on commercial sales worldwide for any therapies developed under the partnership.