Sanofi group Genzyme and Belgian biotech Ablynx have formed a pact to investigate the latter’s nanobodies against a target that plays an important role in multiple sclerosis, in the hope of targeting the neurodegeneration linked with the condition.

Under the research deal, Genzyme has bought itself the right to perform in vitro and in vivo research with Ablynx’s Nanobodies in MS-relevant models in return for an undisclosed exclusivity fee. When these studies are complete, Genzyme has the option of negotiating a license agreement. 

Ablynx has already generated “potent” Nanobodies against the Genzyme’s target of interest and confirmed their activity in preclinical models, the firm noted.

Commenting on the move, Johanne Kaplan, who heads up Neuroimmunology Research at Genzyme, said the project supports its research “that includes the exploration of novel therapeutic platforms to address unmet needs in multiple sclerosis”.

Further terms of the deal were not released.