Silence Theraputics and Mallinckrodt have announced a collaboration that will allow the companies to develop and commercialise RNAi drug targets designed to inhibit or ‘silence’ the complement cascade, a group of proteins that are involved in the immune system and that play a role in the development of inflammation.
The agreement provides Mallinckrodt with an exclusive worldwide license for C3 (SLN500) - a preclinical asset that targets a specific protein in the complement pathway - and an option for up to two additional assets with different complement protein targets.
Under the terms of the deal Mallinckrodt has agreed to provide Silence with an upfront payment of $20 million. Silence is also eligible to receive up to $10 million in research milestones for SLN500 and for each optioned asset, in addition to funding for Phase I clinical development including GMP manufacturing.
The company is “very excited by the significant potential offered by Silence’s RNAi technology to meet the needs of underserved patients in a number of serious and critical conditions,” said Steven Romano, chief scientific officer and executive vice president of Mallinckrodt, continuing to say that they “look forward to collaborating with them to advance development of complement-targeted assets as new therapeutic options.”
The companies will work together to develop and commercialise this RNAi therapeutic target, with the possibility of additional assets, and will also form a Joint Steering Committee to guide the asset’s development program.