CAMBRIDGE, Mass. & EMERYVILLE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Moderna Inc. (NASDAQ:MRNA), a biotechnology company pioneering messenger RNA (mRNA) therapeutics and vaccines and Metagenomi, Inc., a genetic medicines company with a versatile portfolio of next-generation gene editing tools, today announced that the two companies have entered into a strategic research and development collaboration focused on advancing new gene editing systems for in vivo human therapeutic applications. The collaboration will utilize Metagenomi’s novel gene editing tools and leverage Moderna’s mRNA platform, as well as lipid nanoparticle (LNP) delivery technologies, with the goal of developing curative therapies for patients with serious genetic diseases.
“Metagenomi has demonstrated the power of its proprietary metagenomics approach that mines the Earth’s natural environment to discover next-generation gene editing tools and has developed discovery capabilities with the potential to address multiple diseases,” said Eric Huang, PhD, General Manager & Chief Scientific Officer, Moderna Genomics (mGx). “Their discovery platform and expertise will expand Moderna Genomics’ ongoing efforts to develop innovative in vivo gene editing therapies to address a significant unmet medical need. This collaboration represents another milestone on our journey to create transformational genome-engineering based medicines.”
“Gene editing has the potential to provide a cure for millions of patients living with genetic disease. Our partnership with Moderna is designed to accelerate the creation of genetic medicines using Metagenomi’s naturally derived, compact, modular and precise gene editing systems,” said Brian C. Thomas, PhD, CEO and Co-Founder of Metagenomi. “This partnership will enhance our shared vision to forge transformative therapeutics for patients.”
“Unlocking the therapeutic potential of gene editing requires a long-term commitment to develop the best technologies for both in vivo delivery and gene repair,” said Jak Knowles, MD, CBO at Metagenomi. “We share Moderna’s goal to develop mRNA-based medicines, and we are thrilled to partner with them.”
About the Collaboration
Under the terms of the collaboration, Metagenomi and Moderna will advance a series of in vivo gene editing therapeutics against undisclosed targets. Metagenomi will utilize its vast toolbox of gene editing systems in combination with Moderna’s mRNA and LNP technologies, to deliver next-generation therapies for genetic diseases. Metagenomi will receive an upfront cash payment and is eligible to receive certain target option exercise fees as well as development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments, plus tiered royalties on net sales of any products that are commercialized by Moderna. Moderna has also agreed to make an equity investment in Metagenomi in the form of a convertible note.
In 10 years since its inception, Moderna has transformed from a science research-stage company advancing programs in the field of messenger RNA (mRNA), to an enterprise with a diverse clinical portfolio of vaccines and therapeutics across six modalities, a broad intellectual property portfolio in areas including mRNA and lipid nanoparticle formulation, and an integrated manufacturing plant that allows for both clinical and commercial production at scale and at unprecedented speed. Moderna maintains alliances with a broad range of domestic and overseas government and commercial collaborators, which has allowed for the pursuit of both groundbreaking science and rapid scaling of manufacturing. Most recently, Moderna’s capabilities have come together to allow the authorized use of one of the earliest and most-effective vaccines against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Moderna’s mRNA platform builds on continuous advances in basic and applied mRNA science, delivery technology and manufacturing, and has allowed the development of therapeutics and vaccines for infectious diseases, immuno-oncology, rare diseases, cardiovascular diseases and autoimmune diseases. Moderna has been named a top biopharmaceutical employer by Science for the past seven years. To learn more, visit www.modernatx.com.
Metagenomi is a gene editing company committed to developing potentially curative therapeutics by leveraging a proprietary toolbox of next-generation gene editing systems to accurately edit DNA where current technologies cannot. Our metagenomics-powered discovery platform and analytical expertise reveal novel cellular machinery sourced from otherwise unknown organisms. We adapt and forge these naturally evolved systems into powerful gene editing systems that are ultra-small, extremely efficient, highly specific and have a decreased risk of immune response. These systems fuel our pipeline of novel medicines and can be leveraged by partners. Our goal is to revolutionize gene editing for the benefit of patients around the world. For more information, please visit https://metagenomi.co/.
Moderna Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended, including regarding: the collaboration between Moderna and Metagenomi to accelerate the development of gene editing technologies; the financial structure for that collaboration and potential for payments; and the potential development of genetic medicines using gene editing systems. The forward-looking statements in this press release are neither promises nor guarantees, and you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements because they involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors, many of which are beyond Moderna’s control and which could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. These risks, uncertainties, and other factors include those other risks and uncertainties described under the heading “Risk Factors” in Moderna’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and in subsequent filings made by Moderna with the SEC, which are available on the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov. Except as required by law, Moderna disclaims any intention or responsibility for updating or revising any forward-looking statements contained in this press release in the event of new information, future developments or otherwise. These forward-looking statements are based on Moderna’s current expectations and speak only as of the date hereof.