GENENTECH PUTTING $ 15 MIL. BEHIND GLYCOMED CELL ADHESION R&D
GENENTECH PUTTING $ 15 MIL. BEHIND GLYCOMED CELL ADHESION R&D to support the Alameda, Calif.-based firm's work in carbohydrate- based therapeutics for inflammatory diseases and cancer under an agreement announced Jan. 7. The deal provides backing from Genentech for an initial three-year period and includes an option for a two-year extension. The funding for Glycomed will be divided between sponsored research and milestone payments. Included in the $ 15 mil. from Genentech is a two-stage $ 7 mil. equity investment in Glycomed described by Genentech as a "significant" stake. Genentech President and CEO Kirk Raab noted in a joint Jan. 7 press release that the agreement represents "the first major collaboration under Genentech's new strategy to accelerate promising development programs by obtaining complementary leading- edge technology in partnership with a development-stage company." The agreement brings together Genentech's work in protein-based cell adhesion molecules and Glycomed's carbohydrate-based cell adhesion research. Under the agreement, Genentech will develop and market carbohydrate-based products for "a broad range of inflammatory diseases in undisclosed areas," the release notes. Glycomed retains rights to "selected inflammatory diseases" and all potential anti-cancer applications. Genentech receives global manufacturing and marketing rights excluding the Far East, for which Glycomed retains all rights. To date, Glycomed has raised $ 26.5 mil. in private funding. In May of 1990, Glycomed completed two rounds of private placements that brought in $ 15.5 mil., including a $ 4 mil. equity investment from Lilly that conferred a 10% stake in Glycomed. The Lilly funding is part of a three-year research agreement announced in January 1990 for the discovery and development of new therapies for the cardiovascular disease, vascular restenosis ("The Pink Sheet" Jan. 15, 1990, In Brief). Glycomed, founded in 1987, is headed by President and CEO Alan Timms, PhD. Timms was with Sandoz from 1962-83 where he concluded his stint as VP-R&D of Sandoz' U.S. subsidiary. He later went to Monsanto where he was general manager of health care R&D and, from 1985-87, he was president of R&D at Searle. Glycomed has a scientific staff of 45. In addition to its research into the use of carbohydrate-based therapies for inflammatory and cardiovascular diseases, the company has several other proprietay projects, including the use of rational drug design techniques to analyze the potential of carbohydrate-based drugs to treat influenza and rotavirus. Glycomed's research partners in academia include Duke University, Washington University of St. Louis, Stanford, Johns Hopkins and Harvard.
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