Vertex, Ribometrix establish strategic collaboration
Vertex Pharmaceuticals and RNA therapeutics developer Ribometrix, announced today that the companies have entered into a strategic collaboration to discover and develop novel RNA-targeted small molecule therapeutic candidates for serious diseases. The collaboration will combine Ribometrix's proprietary discovery platform for identifying and optimizing small molecule therapeutics that modulate RNA function by targeting three-dimensional RNA structures with Vertex's scientific, clinical and regulatory capabilities for up to three therapeutic programs, including one ongoing discovery program from Ribometrix. Under the terms of the agreement, Vertex will pay Ribometrix approximately $20M upfront, which includes an equity investment in the company. Initially, Ribometrix will undertake two discovery programs with Vertex, and Vertex has an option to add a third program. Following discovery and optimization of novel therapeutic molecules, Vertex has the option to take an exclusive global license for the development and commercialization of molecules for that program. Ribometrix is eligible to receive more than $700M in total potential payments based upon the successful achievement of specified research, development, regulatory and commercial milestones as part of the collaboration. In addition, Vertex will pay tiered royalties on future net global sales on any products that result from the collaboration.