This story has been updated from a previous version.
NEW YORK, Nov 7 - Incyte and Oxford GlycoSciences said Tuesday they would end the exclusive profit-sharing proteomics deal they began in January 1998 and that future collaboration will occur on a non-exclusive contract basis.
Under the revised agreement, OGS will continue to provide proteomics content for Inctye’s proteomics-genomics expression platform LifeExpress, and Incyte will retain the sole rights to market LifeExpress. But both parties will be free to develop their own proteomics-related database technologies independently of one another.
“We think there are multiple database applications of proteomics, not just the gene and protein links we developed with Incyte,” OGS CEO Michael Kranda told GenomeWeb. “Pursuing them ourselves is an option now open to us.”
The new agreement also offers a short-term financial benefit for OGS: It will allow OGS to claim profit on revenues immediately, whereas the old agreement provided that all historical costs for the project had to be covered before OGS could begin claiming profits, said Kranda.
So far, the Incyte-OGS collaboration has netted a total of $20 million in revenues, of which OGS has claimed $15 million, said Kranda.
In the original deal, Incyte made a $5 million equity investment in OGS and provided its bioinformatics technology and software for the effort. OGS brought to the table its proteomics knowledge.In 1999, the companies jointly launched the LifeExpress suite of proteomics-genomics databases.
Since then, OGS has ramped up its own internal bioinformatics capabilities. Last month OGS opened its new proteomics innovation center in Oxfordshire, which includes a computer center for its bioinformatics and IT staff with approximately 50 servers, eight terabytes of online data, and at least 50 terabytes of near line data.
This center, which the company billed as “the world’s leading proteomics ‘data factory’" , would be able to use the company’s own bioinformatics capabilities for pharma’s high throughput screening efforts.
OGS also has set a goal of finding 1500 protein targets internally by the end of the year, and 4000 new targets by the end of next year. Under its new agreement, it would be free to create its own database from these targets, Kranda said.
Currently, OGS has inked proteomics deals with Pfizer, Merck, Bayer, Pioneer Hi-Bred/DuPont, and Medarex, in addition to the collaboration with Incyte. It has also forged technology development collaborations with the Applied Biosystems Cambridge Antibody Technology and Packard BioScience. OGS also has bioinformatics collaborations with the University of Washington and the University of Geneva.
This new agreement will become effective beginning January 2001 and will show up on OGS’s first quarter 2001 balance sheet.
Although this agreement would seem to mark an ending to the extensive collaboration begun in 1998 between Incyte and OGS, both companies emphasized that this collaboration on the LifeExpress will continue at its present levels and that the companies would still seek new subscribers to the database.
" Our collaboration with OGS over the last several years has enabled us to create the most comprehensive gene and protein expression database for researchers worldwide," Incyte CEO Roy Whitfield said in a statement. " By using LifeExpress, researchers have the ability to better understand the role genes play in health and disease and ultimately develop better drugs more quickly."