PARIS, France, and Guangzhou, China, October 7th, 2021 - Servier, a global independent pharmaceutical Group, and Guangdong Maijinjia Biotechnologies (MJJ Biotech), owner of a proprietary Technology platform, acquired from Ranger Biotechnologies (Ranger), which uses short highly modified oligonucleotides (Blockmirs) to upregulate protein expression, today announced that they have entered into a Collaboration and Exclusive License Option Agreement to develop a novel therapy for treating rare neurodegenerative diseases.
Under the collaboration agreement, the Blockmir Technology provided by MJJ Biotech will be used to develop antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) that specifically block selected miRNA binding sites on the mRNA of a non-disclosed target to upregulate its protein level. This innovative strategy could provide a new therapeutic solution for incurable rare neurological diseases.
Upon selection of active Blockmir candidates for IND qualification done with the collaboration of Ranger, Servier has the option to license, develop and commercialize novel therapeutic products based on this technology. MJJ Biotech will receive up to 35 million euros for option fee, and in development and regulatory as well as first commercial sale milestone payments. Specific financial terms are not disclosed.
“This collaboration is a unique opportunity to partner with an experienced and recognized player in the field of antisense oligonucleotide Blockmirs to help us design and optimize ASOs by gaining access to models, technology, and experience that complements our own capabilities in order to provide patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases with innovative therapeutic solutions”, stated Johannes Krupp, Research Program Director Neurology, at Servier.
“We are very pleased to enter into this partnership with Servier and see it as an important validation of the progress that has been made by MJJ Biotech since its founding in 2019. Servier is a major pharmaceutical company with immense experience in neurodegenerative disease and we will surely benefit from this collaboration in multiple ways. We are also confident that the collaboration will prove valuable to Servier and provide new avenues for treatment of rare neurodegenerative disease”, stated Thorleif Møller, Chief Scientific Officer at MJJ Biotech.
Servier has been involved in neuroscience for several decades and focuses its research on neurodegenerative diseases. Servier is particularly interested in targeted movement disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinocerebellar ataxias, many of which are characterized by the abnormal accumulation of certain proteins.
Servier is a global pharmaceutical group governed by a Foundation. With a strong international presence in 150 countries and a total revenue of 4.7 billion euros in 2020, Servier employs 22,500 people worldwide. Servier is an independent group that invests over 20% of its brand-name revenue in Research and Development every year. To accelerate therapeutic innovation for the benefit of patients, the Group is committed to open and collaborative innovation with academic partners, pharmaceutical groups, and biotech companies. It also integrates the patient's voice at the heart of its activities, from research to support beyond the pill.
A leader in cardiology, the ambition of the Servier Group is to become a renowned and innovative player in oncology. Its growth is based on a sustained commitment to cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, oncology, neuroscience and immuno-inflammatory diseases. To promote access to healthcare for all, the Servier Group also offers a range of quality generic drugs covering most pathologies. More information: servier.com
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About Guangdong Maijinjia Biotechnologies
Guangdong Maijinjia Biotechnologies Co., Ltd. (MJJ Biotech) is a privately held joint venture between Danish and Chinese founders. MJJ Biotech’s proprietary blockmir technology enables upregulation of protein expression, which the company uses to develop new treatments for liver and CNS disease. The company is headquartered in Guangzhou, China and has R&D collaboration with Ranger Biotechnologies in Denmark.