Under the multi-year agreement designed to develop mRNA vaccines for up to five undisclosed infectious disease pathogens, Translate Bio and Sanofi Pasteur will jointly conduct research and development activities to advance mRNA vaccines during an initial three-year research term. Sanofi Pasteur will make an upfront payment of $45 million to Translate Bio.
In total, Translate Bio is eligible to receive up to $805 million in payments, which also includes certain development, regulatory, and sales-related milestones across several vaccine targets, and option exercise fees if Sanofi Pasteur exercises its option related to development of vaccines for additional pathogens.
In addition, Translate Bio is also eligible to receive tiered royalty payments associated with worldwide sales of the developed vaccines. Sanofi Pasteur will pay for all costs during the research term and will receive exclusive worldwide commercialization rights. Translate Bio will be responsible for clinical manufacture and will be entitled to additional payments under a separate supply agreement to be established.
“Sanofi Pasteur is pursuing a variety of emerging technologies that will allow us to continue to lead in research and development of next-generation vaccines,” said John Shiver, senior vice president, R&D, Sanofi Pasteur. “We believe mRNA technology has significant potential for rapid and versatile manufacturing, reduced industrialization costs for multiple vaccines, and the improved breadth of immune response for infectious disease vaccines. The Translate Bio platform may allow us to further address medical needs worldwide, including those not readily accessible using conventional vaccine strategies.”
“Sanofi Pasteur is at the forefront of vaccine research and development which makes them an ideal partner as we expand upon our promising early efforts in vaccines,” said Ronald Renaud, CEO, Translate Bio. “We believe that this partnership validates the potential of our mRNA platform, and also enables us to apply our mRNA technology beyond the current therapeutic applications that we are pursuing in cystic fibrosis (CF) and ornithine transcarbamylase (OTC) deficiency, ultimately advancing our goal of delivering innovative medicines to patients.”
The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including the expiration of the applicable waiting period under the Hart Scott Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 in the United States.
About mRNA Vaccines
Vaccines work by mimicking disease agents to stimulate the immune system; building up a defense mechanism that can be deployed to fight future infections. mRNA vaccines offer an innovative approach by delivering the nucleotide sequence encoding any protein associated with prevention or treatment of a pathogen.
Because of their high potency, capacity for rapid development and potential for low-cost manufacture and safe administration, mRNA vaccines represent a potentially innovative alternative to conventional vaccine approaches. A desired protein can be expressed from mRNA without the need to adjust the production process offering maximum flexibility in development, potentially enabling the development of vaccines for disease areas where vaccination is not a viable option today.
(Source: Translate Bio)