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Intellia Therapeutics, SparingVision ink pact to develop novel ocular therapies using CRISPR/Cas9 technology

Cambridge, Massachusetts
Saturday, October 16, 2021, 15:00 Hrs  [IST]

Intellia Therapeutics, Inc., a leading clinical-stage genome editing company, and SparingVision, a genomic medicine company, announced a strategic collaboration to develop novel genomic medicines utilizing CRISPR/Cas9 technology for the treatment of ocular diseases.

As part of this collaboration, Intellia will grant SparingVision exclusive rights to Intellia’s proprietary in vivo CRISPR/Cas9-based genome editing technology for up to three ocular targets addressing diseases with significant unmet medical need. SparingVision will lead and fund the preclinical and clinical development for the genome editing product candidates pursued under the collaboration. In addition, the parties will research and develop novel self-inactivating AAV vectors and LNP-based approaches to address delivery of CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing reagents to the retina.

As part of the licensing agreement, Intellia will receive a 10% equity ownership stake in SparingVision. Intellia will also be eligible to receive certain development and commercial milestone payments (around $200 million per product) as well as royalties on potential future sales of products arising from the collaboration. In addition, Intellia may exercise an option to obtain the US commercialization rights for product candidates arising from two of three collaboration targets. For product candidates Intellia chooses to option, Intellia will pay an opt-in fee, reimburse certain costs, share in 50% of development costs and pay royalties to SparingVision on US sales. Intellia will also maintain the ability to leverage technology advances established under this collaboration for any targets outside the partnership.

Stéphane Boissel, president and chief executive officer of SparingVision, said: “SparingVision’s aim has always been to disrupt the ophthalmology field by using cutting-edge technologies to address areas of significant unmet need. This collaboration with Intellia marks a pivotal moment in this mission and is highly complementary to our already mature and growing pipeline of unique mutation-agnostic gene therapies. Intellia is the first company in history to present clinical data supporting precision editing of a disease-causing gene within the body following a single, systemic dose of CRISPR/Cas9 and we are honored to have been selected as a strategic partner. We look forward to working together with the shared goal of radically changing the treatment of blinding ocular diseases.”

“Intellia has been a pioneer in utilizing CRISPR/Cas9 technology to develop potentially curative treatments for genetic diseases. Today’s announcement is another step forward in more fully leveraging the power of our genome editing technology to address diseases inadequately treated with existing medicines,” said Intellia president and chief executive officer John Leonard, M.D. “We have been thoroughly impressed with the team at SparingVision, particularly regarding their unparalleled understanding of retinal diseases and track-record for developing novel therapies for patients with ocular diseases. We believe SparingVision will be an excellent partner to expand our genome editing capabilities into the field of ophthalmology and we look forward to our new partnership.”

The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter and is subject to certain closing conditions.

Intellia Therapeutics, a leading clinical-stage genome editing company, is developing novel, potentially curative therapeutics using CRISPR/Cas9 technology.

SparingVision is a genomic medicines company, translating pioneering science into vision-saving treatments.

 

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