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AbbVie and Anima Biotech collaborate on mRNA biology modulators

The biotech could receive up to $540m in milestone payments for three targets


AbbVie and Anima Biotech (Anima) have entered into a collaboration for the discovery and development of mRNA biology modulators against three oncology and immunology targets, the companies announced.

The partners will use Anima's mRNA Lightning platform to discover novel mRNA biology modulators for the collaboration targets, with AbbVie gaining exclusive rights to licence, further develop and commercialise the resulting programmes.

In exchange, an upfront payment of $42m will be given to Anima, which may be eligible to receive up to $540m in option fees and research and development milestones in total for the three targets, with the potential for further commercial milestones as well as tiered royalties on net sales.

As part of the agreement, AbbVie will also have the option to expand the collaboration with up to three additional targets under the same terms, potentially increasing the value of the partnership.

Jonathon Sedgwick, vice president and global head of discovery research at AbbVie, said: "This collaboration will give AbbVie access to Anima's leading technology platform and deep expertise in mRNA biology. Modulating mRNA biology with small molecules is a new approach and has the potential to address 'undruggable' targets with implications across multiple therapy areas.”

Anima’s differentiated approach combines high-scale phenotypic screening that automates millions of experiments in live mRNA biology, with MOAi technology using AI to explain the mechanism of action of active molecules.

"The power of our mRNA Lightning platform is validated by our multiple partnerships and a growing internal pipeline," said Yochi Slonim, Anima’s co-founder and chief executive officer.

"We are excited to partner with AbbVie and are looking forward to start working with their scientific team in a close collaboration,” Slonim added.

Anima entered into a strategic collaboration with Takeda in March 2021 to discover and develop a new class of medicines for genetically-defined neurological diseases, also using its mRNA Lightning platform.

The multi-year collaboration has since produced a successful milestone for the company, which it announced in July last year.

The company also partnered with Eli Lilly in 2018 to discover and develop traditional inhibitors for several protein targets.

Article by
Emily Kimber

11th January 2023

From: Research



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