CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Beam Therapeutics, a biotechnology company developing precision genetic medicines through base editing, today announced that it has entered into a collaboration and license agreement with a newly-formed company, Prime Medicine, Inc. to research and develop a novel gene editing technology called prime editing, recently developed by one of Beam’s co-founders, David Liu, Ph.D., and his group at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT.
Under the agreement, Beam has the exclusive right to develop prime editing technology for the creation or correction of any single-base transition mutations, as well as for the treatment of sickle cell disease, both of which Beam is already pursuing with its base editing technology. Transition mutations (e.g. A to G, C to T) are the largest single class of disease-associated genetic mutations, and are also potentially treatable with base editing. Beam plans to evaluate prime editing technology for potential use in future programs.
“Part of Beam’s strategy is to continue to access emerging technologies in gene editing and delivery, while finding new ways to create meaningful options for patients. Our collaboration with, and contribution to the formation of, Prime Medicine is a great example of that approach, allowing us to incorporate prime editing into the Beam platform,” said John Evans, chief executive officer of Beam. “This partnership enables both companies to advance the technology in distinct spaces, with Beam focusing on the kinds of edits that are most similar to our base editing technology.”
As part of the collaboration, Beam is providing initial interim leadership to Prime Medicine for the first year of the collaboration, and will have the right to designate a member on Prime Medicine’s board. The parties will also grant each other non-exclusive licenses to certain CRISPR technology and delivery technology to enable the development of prime editing products.
About Beam Therapeutics
Beam Therapeutics is developing precision genetic medicines through base editing. Founded by leading scientists in CRISPR gene editing, Beam is pursuing therapies for serious diseases using its proprietary base editing technology, which can make precise edits to single base pairs in DNA and RNA. Beam is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts. For additional information, visit www.BeamTx.com.