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UCB and UK’s MRC Technology Sign Exclusive License Agreement

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UCB and UK’s MRC Technology have announced that they have entered an exclusive license agreement, with UCB obtaining rights in a novel fibrosis therapy program.

The program stems from a collaboration between MRC Technology’s Centre for Therapeutics Discovery and leading academics at the University of Sheffield on development of a novel antibody-based therapy which targets a key step in the progression of fibrosis.

Fibrosis is a key area of unmet medical need. It is a tissue scarring condition, a primary cause of major organ failure, and a complicating factor in chronic diseases such as diabetes and hypertension.

Under the terms of the agreement, MRC Technology will receive an upfront payment, clinical development milestone payments and royalties on future products. Consistent with the organization’s not-for-profit collaborative model, revenue from this deal is shared back with the University of Sheffield and will be reinvested to support other collaborative programs within its drug discovery labs.

“The program focuses on a key area of unmet medical need and we are committed to bringing fibrosis treatment to patients,” commented Mark Bodmer, UCB New Medicines Vice President and Head of Immunology. “We are excited to be working with MRC Technology and University of Sheffield scientists to build on their work to date in generating and characterizing promising therapeutic approaches with the potential for significant patient impact.”

Michael Dalrymple, Director of Business Development at MRC Technology commented: “We are delighted to be able to partner this program with UCB and we look forward to working together to ensure the project’s commercial success. This program has the potential to not only benefit fibrosis patients and help prevent organ failure, but also enables MRC Technology and its partners to help bring other new research to market.”

The target and financial terms of the agreement have not been disclosed.