Bayer, ERS Genomics Announce Licensing Agreement
News May 18, 2016
Bayer and ERS have signed a patent license agreement whereby Bayer gains access to ERS’ CRISPR-Cas9 genome-editing patents for certain cross-divisional applications in Bayer’s core strategic areas. ERS Genomics holds rights to the foundational CRISPR-Cas9 patent portfolio from Dr. Emmanuelle Charpentier, an inventor of the breakthrough gene-editing technology.
Dr. Axel Bouchon, Head of the Bayer Lifescience Center, said: “This is perfectly suited to fully leverage the tremendous potential of CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing within Bayer and serves as an ideal addition to our partnership with CRISPR Therapeutics”.
The licensing agreement is an investment by the Bayer Lifescience Center (BLSC), which recently created a joint venture with CRISPR Therapeutics to discover, develop and commercialize new breakthrough therapeutics to cure blood disorders, blindness, and congenital heart disease. The BLSC has the mission to uncover, encourage and unlock fundamental scientific and medical breakthroughs more rapidly by enabling innovative partnerships with entrepreneurial best-in-class biotechnology companies.
"We are pleased to include Bayer into our portfolio of licensees,” said Shaun Foy, CEO and Founder of ERS Genomics. “Genome editing has broad applications in drug discovery and development and making the CRISPR-Cas9 patents available to biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies is an important part of our strategy." Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.
In a new study in cells, University of Illinois researchers have adapted CRISPR gene-editing technology to cause the cell’s internal machinery to skip over a small portion of a gene when transcribing it into a template for protein building. This gives researchers a way not only to eliminate a mutated gene sequence, but to influence how the gene is expressed and regulated.
Researchers published today a detailed description of the complete genome of bread wheat, the world's most widely-cultivated crop. This work will pave the way for the production of wheat varieties better adapted to climate challenges, with higher yields, enhanced nutritional quality and improved sustainability.