Apparently, a licensing agreement with Takeda worth a potential $3.5 billion wasn’t enough for PeptiDream this week. The biopharmaceutical company, which has a peptide-based drug discovery platform, has now inked a similar deal with Alnylam worth a potential $2.2 billion.
Alnylam, which focuses on RNAi therapeutics, has tapped PeptiDream to develop peptide-small interfering RNA (siRNA) conjugates that will help deliver RNAi therapeutics to tissues outside the liver.
PeptiDream will receive an undisclosed upfront payment from Alnylam, R&D funding over the term of the collaboration and may be eligible to receive up to $2.2 billion in biobucks. Additional royalty payments are part of the deal for any Alnylam products that result from the collaboration as well.That's $5.8 billion in promise for just one week, though biotech veterans will know that the chances of every cent of that being picked up remains historically low, and comes with many, many caveats in a sector built on high-risk, high-reward.
Still, that's a great week for PeptiDream, and further validates its platform.
“Having solved delivery of RNAi therapeutics to the liver and made substantial preclinical progress on in vivo delivery to the central nervous system, eye and lung, we are now adding to our suite of delivery technologies that have the potential to enable efficient delivery of siRNA to even broader tissue types throughout the human body,” said Alnylam’s chief scientific officer, Kevin Fitzgerald, Ph.D.
The collaboration will see Alnylam choose receptors for PeptiDream’s discovery platform, which will then select peptides to match. Alnylam will then generate siRNA conjugates and perform studies to select the final peptides to move forward. The companies could develop multiple treatments from the partnership.
The companies did not disclose the exact diseases they will be working on, beyond the aim to deliver treatments to tissues outside the liver. Alnylam has four strategic therapeutic areas: genetic medicines, cardio-metabolic diseases, infectious diseases and central nervous system/ocular diseases.
This is the latest collaboration for PeptiDream that could be worth multiple billions of dollars. The company disclosed earlier this week that its licensing deal with Takeda could be worth up to $3.5 billion. That pact will focus on central nervous system targets.
And PeptiDream is no stranger to these high-flying deals. The Japanese company signed another with Bayer in 2017 worth as much as $1.11 billion in milestones and royalties. Another deal with Johnson & Johnson's Janssen is worth up to $1.15 billion, and others have been signed with Amgen, AstraZeneca, Bristol Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis, Merck, Sanofi and many more.
The deals could provide a slow trickle of billions for PeptiDream over the years as they deliver on their peptide promises.