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Kylin Therapeutics, Fort Dodge Animal Health, Divergence

Kylin Forms Cancer Drug Partnership with Fort Dodge Animal Health
Kylin Therapeutics said this week that it has signed a deal to develop RNAi-based treatments for cancer with Fort Dodge Animal Health, a division of Wyeth.
Under the arrangement, the collaborators will incorporate Kylin’s packaging RNA, or pRNA, delivery technology into the RNAi compounds they develop. Fort Dodge will have the exclusive rights to the technology and drugs resulting from the partnership for use in companion animals.
Kylin will retain all rights to the technology and therapies for human applications.
Kylin stands to receive undisclosed research funding, milestone payments, and royalties from Fort Dodge. Additional terms were not disclosed.
Kylin and Fort Dodge’s business models are “complementary, and the results of this effort will provide valuable data and intellectual property that will mutually serve our core businesses," Eric Davis, president and CEO of Kylin Therapeutics, said in a statement.

Divergence Announces NSF Grant to Develop Parasite-Resistant Crops
Divergence said this week it has been awarded a $100,000 Phase I Small Business Innovation Research grant from the National Science Foundation to help it use RNAi to develop crops, including corn, resistant to a common parasite.
According to Divergence, these crops would express double-stranded RNA in their root systems to specifically silence the expression of genes in invading parasitic nematodes.
RNAi News first reported on the grant in May (see RNAi News, 5/31/2007).

The Scan

Not as High as Hoped

The Associated Press says initial results from a trial of CureVac's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine suggests low effectiveness in preventing COVID-19.

Finding Freshwater DNA

A new research project plans to use eDNA sampling to analyze freshwater rivers across the world, the Guardian reports.

Rise in Payments

Kaiser Health News investigates the rise of payments made by medical device companies to surgeons that could be in violation of anti-kickback laws.

Nature Papers Present Ginkgo Biloba Genome Assembly, Collection of Polygenic Indexes, More

In Nature this week: a nearly complete Ginkgo biloba genome assembly, polygenic indexes for dozens of phenotypes, and more.