Rare Daily Staff

Duke University’s Office of Licensing & Ventures has entered into an alliance with the healthcare investment firm Deerfield Management with the goal of accelerating Duke’s preclinical development of new drugs for improved quality of life and cures for disease. 

Deerfield has formed Four Points Innovation and backed it with up to $130 million of initial funding to support the Duke R&D project throughout preclinical stages of drug discovery and development. Deerfield also will provide development expertise in support of Duke’s innovative drug research across a span of high-need therapeutic areas, as well as those targeting patients who suffer from hard-to-treat and rare diseases. 

Under the agreement between Duke and Deerfield, Duke researchers will be able to submit project proposals for consideration by a Four Points Innovation committee comprised of scientific leadership representing both Duke and Deerfield. Four Points Innovation will also receive an option to license Four Points Innovation-funded intellectual property developed at Duke.

Accepted projects will include a development plan aimed at achieving clinical-ready therapeutic candidates. Deerfield will provide funding and operational support for accepted projects, and successful projects that achieve clinical-ready status may be eligible for additional capital from Deerfield. 

“This new partnership will help further Duke’s commitment to improve the lives of people in our own community and around the world by supporting and accelerating the translation of research into new therapies to treat and cure society’s most formidable healthcare challenges,” said Mary Klotman, dean of the Duke University School of Medicine and vice chancellor for health affairs.


Photo: Mary Klotman, dean of the Duke University School of Medicine and vice chancellor for health affairs

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