Pfizer partners with Voyager on AAV capsids

By The Science Advisory Board staff writers

October 7, 2021 -- Pfizer has signed a deal to exercise its options to license novel capsids generated from Voyager Therapeutics' RNA-driven Tracer (tropism redirection of adeno-associated virus by cell-type-specific expression of RNA) screening technology.

Pfizer may use the platform to develop, manufacture, and commercialize gene therapies, utilizing two undisclosed transgenes to treat certain neurological and cardiovascular diseases. Proprietary adeno-associated virus (AAV) capsids derived from Voyager's platform have shown superior blood-brain-barrier penetration, enhanced cardiac muscle tropism, and increased transgene expression in target tissues compared to conventional AAV capsids in non-human primates, according to Voyager.

Voyager will receive $30 million and is entitled to receive up to $20 million in fees for two options that Pfizer can exercise within the next year. In addition, Voyager is eligible to earn up to $580 million in total development, regulatory, and commercial milestones associated with licensed products.

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