Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has announced that it has signed an agreement to sponsor a five-year research program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Center for Cancer Research focused on the delivery of RNAi therapeutics.
Robert Langer, an Institute Professor at MIT and Daniel Anderson, in the MIT Center for Cancer Research, are the co-investigators of the research program and Alnylam will provide research funding for approximately ten post-doctoral researchers annually over the five-year term.
“This expanded relationship with Bob Langer and Daniel Anderson unites world-class innovation in drug delivery and material bioengineering from MIT with the industry leading effort on delivery of RNAi therapeutics at Alnylam, expanding the important advances already made to date,” said John Maraganore, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Alnylam.
“With this new initiative and other ongoing efforts at Alnylam and with other industry and academic collaborators, we believe we are uniquely positioned to address delivery of RNAi therapeutics in a comprehensive and systematic manner. This new multi-year research program will continue to solidify our scientific leadership in the translation of RNAi into what we believe is a powerful drug discovery platform for innovative medicines,” Maraganore said.
The agreement provides Alnylam an exclusive option to license future RNAi technology resulting from the research sponsorship. Concurrently, Alnylam has broadened its exclusive rights under a pre-existing license agreement from MIT, to develop and commercialize for human RNAi therapeutics a lipidoid-based delivery technology that was developed in the Langer laboratory.