NEW YORK, June 30 - CytRx today said it has signed an exclusive, worldwide, royalty-bearing license agreement with the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) to use UMMS's RNA interference technology in the development of a treatment for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease.
The approach, developed by Zuoshang Xu, associate professor of biochemistry and molecular pharmacology at UMMS, uses RNAi gene silencing to search for mutant genes that cause ALS.
"While several promising treatments are being developed for ALS, the specificity and power of RNAi technology could advance these efforts significantly," said Steven Kriegsman, CytRx CEO.
Financial details of the licensing agreement were not disclosed.
The agreement is part of a broad strategic alliance between CytRx and UMMS that also includes exclusive licensing agreements for the use of RNAi in the development of therapeutic products to treat obesity and type II diabetes.