Pfizer ups ante on Santaris RNA discovery deal with $614M pact

Two years after Pfizer ($PFE) inherited Wyeth's discovery pact with Denmark's Santaris, its researchers have decided to significantly up the ante on their deal. The pharma giant is handing over $14 million in an upfront fee and promising up to $600 million more in milestones to expand the deal to develop RNA-targeted drugs.

Santaris got $17 million in cash and equity from Wyeth for their original pact struck in early 2009. The revised deal includes potential royalty payments for drugs promising to hit up to 10 RNA targets.

"The expansion of our collaboration with Santaris Pharma A/S demonstrates our strategic intention to partner with innovative biopharm/biotech companies to explore novel drug design technologies as a potential source for breakthrough therapeutics," said Mikael Dolsten, president of worldwide research and development at Pfizer. "We have been encouraged by the progress of our oligonucleotide collaboration with Santaris Pharma and are eager to explore this expanded partnership for potential additional LNA-based drug projects."

- here's the Santaris release