Synlogic has entered a platform collaboration with biotech company Ginkgo BioWorks to support its synthetic bionic medicines pipeline.

The alliance builds on the partners’ pilot programme, which was launched in 2017. It is intended to support Synlogic’s synthetic biotic strain optimisation capabilities.

Synlogic will leverage Ginkgo’s cell programming platform to build and test several microbial strains to quickly advance early preclinical leads.

As part of the collaboration, Synlogic expects to efficiently progress candidate strains, as well as access the technology and resources required to support its pipeline expansion and existing clinical programmes.

Synlogic president and CEO Aoife Brennan said: “Ginkgo has built a world-class infrastructure for programming and optimising microbial strains at a large scale which will be instrumental in the development of our portfolio of synthetic biotic medicines.”

The deal includes an $80m equity investment by Ginkgo, which has acquired 6,340,771 shares of Synlogic common stock along with pre-funded warrants for up to 2,548,117 shares, both at $9 per share. These transactions have been executed and closed.

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At the completion, Synlogic made a $30m payment to Ginkgo for synthetic biology services over five years. This period may be extended.

Ginkgo Bioworks co-founder and CEO Jason Kelly said: “The ability to programme living cells to sense and respond to treat complex diseases has great potential.

“Synlogic’s platform for designing and developing living medicines that can treat a wide range of dynamic diseases has the potential to be transformative to the next generation of pharmaceuticals.”

Under the deal, Synlogic will have exclusive rights to any synthetic biotic medicines resulting from the collaboration and to intellectual property covering such products.