Rare Daily Staff

Vertex Pharmaceuticals will pay Kymera Therapeutics $70 million in upfront payments as part of a research and development collaboration to advance small molecule protein degraders against multiple targets. 

Kymera is platform is designed to access the body’s innate protein recycling machinery to degrade dysregulated, disease-causing proteins. Its platform has the ability to target and degrade proteins considered intractable, and advance new treatment options for patients with diseases thought of as undruggable.

“This collaboration with Kymera will enhance our drug discovery capabilities and support our strategy of investing in scientific innovation to develop transformative medicines for serious diseases,” said Mark Bunnage, senior vice president and site head of Boston research at Vertex. “We’ve been impressed by the Kymera team’s depth of knowledge in the field and compelling technology platform and are excited to bring our research and development expertise to this promising new therapeutic modality.”

Under the terms of the four-year agreement, the $70 million upfront payment includes an equity investment in the company. Kymera will conduct research activities in multiple targets under the collaboration.  Upon designation of a clinical development candidate, Vertex has the option to exclusively license molecules against the designated target. 

Kymera is eligible to receive more than $1 billion in potential payments based upon the successful achievement of specified research, development, regulatory, and commercial milestones for up to six programs optioned as part of the collaboration. In addition, Vertex will pay tiered royalties on future net sales on any products that may result from this collaboration.

The collaboration leverages Kymera’s expertise in targeted protein degradation and its drug discovery platform as well as Vertex’s scientific, clinical, and regulatory capabilities.

 “This strategic partnership will broaden the application of targeted protein degradation to address serious diseases beyond cancer with limited or no treatment options,” said Laurent Audoly, president and CEO, Kymera Therapeutics. “This fits perfectly with Kymera’s vision to build a platform that is disease agnostic and delivers the broadest possible impact.”

Photo: Laurent Audoly, president and CEO, Kymera Therapeutics

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