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Alnylam, Roche Alliance Enters ‘RNAi Therapeutic Collaboration Phase’

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Alnylam Pharmaceuticals said today that its ongoing alliance with Roche has entered the “RNAi therapeutic-collaboration phase,” under which the companies will jointly develop and commercialize specific, disease-target focused drug candidates based on the gene-silencing technology.

At this stage of the deal, which was signed in 2007 (see RNAi News, 7/12/2007), each company will contribute specific technologies, including Alnylam’s lipid nanoparticle and Roche’s dynamic polyconjugate delivery vehicles. Alnylam and Roche will co-commercialize any resultant products in the US, and Alnylam stands to receive additional milestone and royalty payments for products marketed by Roche elsewhere.

The companies did not disclose when their alliance is expected to yield its first clinical candidate. Last month, Lou Renzetti, global head of RNA therapeutics for Roche, told RNAi News that an investigational new drug application for his company’s first in-house RNAi drug candidate is expected to be filed next year, but that this drug would use a delivery technology developed by partner Tekmira Pharmaceuticals (see RNAi News, 10/1/2009).

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