Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a second generation RNA interference (RNAi) company, and Ipsen, a global biotechnology specialty care group, announced today that the two companies have entered into an exclusive research collaboration agreement to leverage their expertise in Dicer Substrate siRNA (DsiRNA) research and peptide engineering. The companies will develop novel conjugates of Dicerna’s DsiRNA molecules and Ipsen’s peptide targeting vectors in the therapeutic areas of oncology and endocrinology.
RNAi is a key cellular mechanism regulating gene expression in both normal and disease processes. Based on gene sequence rather than protein structure, RNAi therapeutics have the potential to silence disease-causing genes using small synthetic RNA molecules, which may enable the development of new therapies for many acute and chronic diseases. The resulting target gene knockdown reduces gene expression in a way that is highly selective and specific.
“We are very excited to partner with Ipsen on this exclusive research collaboration. This agreement further advances our discovery efforts and provides us with the opportunity to develop Dicer Substrate siRNA therapies and targeted drug delivery systems while working with a partner who brings a unique peptide technology platform to the collaboration,” said James C. Jenson, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Dicerna. “This is the second significant partnership with a major biopharmaceutical company that we have entered into in 2010, further validating our next generation Dicer Substrate Technology and our unique ability to generate a greater number of more potent gene silencing molecules.”
“Combining Dicerna’s Dicer Substrate Technology with Ipsen’s innovative peptide technology that can target specific cell types of interest and mediate intracellular delivery of DsiRNA, will enable us to jointly explore a number of therapeutic programs in the areas of oncology and endocrinology,” said Claude Bertrand, Executive Vice-President, Chief Scientific Officer, Ipsen Group. “We believe that this collaboration brings together two leading companies with unique and complementary technology platforms which could potentially lead to the discovery of breakthrough DsiRNA-based therapies.”
Date: April 1, 2010
Source: Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc