Tekmira Pharmaceuticals said this week that it has signed a four-year target-validation deal with drug maker Bristol-Myers Squibb.
Under the deal, Bristol-Myers Squibb will use siRNAs formulated with Tekmira's stable nucleic acid-lipid particle-based delivery technology to "validate the function of certain cellular targets," the companies said.
Notably, Bristol-Myers Squibb will conduct the preclinical validation work, but has agreed to share the data it generates with Tekmira, which is free to use the data to develop RNAi-based drugs against the targets.
Tekmira will receive $3 million upfront, and is responsible for providing "a pre-determined number of the SNALP batches over the four-year agreement," the firms said. "Bristol-Myers Squibb will have a first right to negotiate a licensing agreement on certain RNAi products developed by Tekmira that evolve from gene targets" it validates.
Additional terms were not disclosed.