These two new patents granted add to the strength and breadth of PBL’s RNAi patent portfolio. The patent family now comprises a total of 9 granted US patents, which cover a wide area of RNAi applications from detection of gene silencing, to methods to silence genes, and compositions and cells containing and producing RNAi molecules.
On 24 June 2014 US Patent No. 8,759,102 was granted with claims to cells comprising synthetic DNA constructs that express RNAi molecules to silence target RNA in these cells. Earlier this week (15 July 2014) US Patent No. 8,779,236 was granted with claims to host cells containing DNA constructs expressing RNAi molecules that silence RNA in a pest, parasite, predator or pathogen.
The significance of this RNAi patent estate is widely recognised in the AgBiotech and Pharma industries as a critical part for the wide range of applications of interest in the field of RNAi. This is evidenced by the substantial number of licences already granted by PBL for different aspects and applications of PBL’s RNAi portfolio. PBL’s partners are currently developing products in the area of pharmaceuticals, animal health and agricultural biotechnology.
Dr Jan Chojecki, Managing Director of PBL adds “We are very pleased, that the USPTO has over the past two and a half years recognised Professor Sir David Baulcombe’s and Dr Andrew Hamilton’s contribution to the field of RNAi and PBL now holds a substantial patent portfolio in the area, covering many aspects and applications of RNAi. Several potential products are currently in clinical trials and product development with our partners. We are looking forward to the market introduction of RNAi based therapeutics and plant health agents which will demonstrate the unique ability of RNAi to improve medicine and agriculture. Furthermore we anticipate partnering with more companies interested in the diverse applications of RNAi.”
Dr Lars von Borcke, Business Development Manager of PBL adds “We are continuing with our strategy of broadly licensing our RNAi portfolio. Currently licences are still available for applications in human therapeutics, animal health, plant protection, commercial provision of reagents and diagnostics, and related service activities, and we are looking forward to enter into discussions and agreements on these with new potential partners.”
While most of PBL’s licences to its RNAi patent portfolio are confidential, PBL has previously announced the partnership with Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: ALNM), a world leader in the clinical development of RNAi therapeutics and Dicerna Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: DRNA), a second generation RNAi company focused on developing novel therapeutics utilizing its proprietary Dicer Substrate siRNA (DsiRNA) Technology™ and EnCore™ delivery system.