Biogen has signed a strategic collaboration with US-based drug maker C4 Therapeutics for the discovery and development of new therapies to treat neurological diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease.
The partners will explore the use of C4 Therapeutics new protein degradation platform to identify new treatments. The platform is designed to allow the discovery of molecules leveraging endogenous protein degradation mechanisms to address disease-causing proteins.
C4 Therapeutics will offer targeted protein degradation expertise and research services, while Biogen will contribute through neuroscience expertise and drug development capabilities.
The companies intend to jointly research potential targets and Biogen will advance the resulting candidates into development and potential commercialisation.
As per the agreement, C4 Therapeutics will receive a total of up to $415m in upfront and potential milestone payments as well as potential future royalties.
Biogen research and development executive vice-president Michael Ehlers said: “This new collaboration with C4 Therapeutics complements our broader research strategy to develop potential therapies for neurological conditions across multiple modalities.
“We look forward to discovering new potential therapeutic options for diseases that currently have limited-to-no treatment options available.”
Furthermore, Biogen has also formed an alliance to utilise Skyhawk Therapeutics’ SkySTAR technology platform to discover new small molecules for the treatment of neurological disease patients.
Under the terms of the agreement, Biogen will have an option to licence therapies resulting from the partnership. The company will carry out their development and potential commercialisation.
Biogen gains an exclusive licence to worldwide intellectual property rights on research-stage therapeutic products for multiple sclerosis (MS), spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and other neurological conditions.
In turn, the company made an upfront payment of $74m to Skyhawk Therapeutics, which is also eligible for potential future milestone payments and royalties.