Francois Vigneault, Shape Therapeutics CEO

Ot­su­ka pens AAV deal with Shape Ther­a­peu­tics for eye gene ther­a­pies

Japan­ese phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pa­ny Ot­su­ka has en­list­ed Seat­tle-based RNA edit­ing biotech Shape Ther­a­peu­tics to de­vel­op new ade­no-as­so­ci­at­ed virus (AAV) vec­tors. The hope is to find new ways to de­liv­er gene ther­a­pies to treat eye dis­eases.

Shape and Ot­su­ka de­clined to dis­close the up­front pay­ment, but the deal is po­ten­tial­ly worth more than $1.5 bil­lion to­tal, in­clud­ing de­vel­op­ment, reg­u­la­to­ry and sales mile­stones. Shape is al­so el­i­gi­ble to re­ceive roy­al­ties on a gene ther­a­py that us­es its AAVs. The new AAVs will be used to de­vel­op one-time ther­a­pies in­ject­ed in­to the whites of the eye, but the part­ners de­clined to dis­close what dis­eases or tar­gets the col­lab­o­ra­tion is for.

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