Biotechnology firm Vividion Therapeutics has entered a multi-year strategic collaboration with Celgene to identify and develop small molecule drugs for oncology, inflammatory and neurodegenerative conditions.
The companies plan to develop molecules that function through the ubiquitin proteasome system and modulate specific levels of proteins to deliver a therapeutic effect.
Under the terms of the deal, Celgene will make a $101m upfront payment to Vividion. The companies will jointly work for four years with the option to extend the partnership for two more years for an additional payment.
The collaboration will utilise Vividion’s target discovery platform designed to identify ligands and discover candidates against specific high value, difficult-to-drug targets.
The platform provides access to the wide range of proteins expressed in human cells and enables accurate, direct assessment of protein-drug interactions in native biological systems.
Research and early development president at Celgene Rupert Vessey said: “Vividion has assembled a truly cutting-edge drug discovery platform that offers the opportunity to accelerate drug delivery in new and impactful ways by expanding the druggable proteome and addressing difficult targets.
“This collaboration will provide both companies with the opportunity for a comprehensive, accelerated drug discovery approach to develop first-in-class therapeutics in areas with high potential impact for patients.”
Vividion will be initially responsible for discovering and identifying programmes to be included in the alliance and Celgene will have the right to opt in on those programmes at investigational new drug (IND) application acceptance.
Celgene will gain exclusive worldwide rights for the first and additional select programmes, and Vividion could receive up to double-digit royalties on sales and milestone payments.
For the remaining programmes, the companies will equally share either US or worldwide development costs and commercialisation profits and losses.