Roche Links with PureTech on Exosomes

26.07.2018 -

Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche has signed up to a multi-year collaboration with PureTech Health, a US clinical stage biopharma focused on the brain-immune-gut axis.

The partners will advance PureTech’s milk-derived exosome platform technology for the oral administration of Roche’s antisense oligonucleotide platform.

Under the terms of the deal, PureTech will receive up to $36 million from Roche, including upfront payments, research support and early preclinical milestones. In addition, PureTech will be eligible to potentially receive development milestone payments of more than $1 billion along with other sales milestones and royalties for an undisclosed number of products.

The Boston, Massachusetts-based company said its milk-derived exosome technology is uniquely designed to facilitate the oral administration of complex payloads, including nucleic acids, peptides and small molecules. It is thought that these exosomes travel via lymphatic circulation and could potentially enable the targeting of immune cells in novel ways.

“We are excited to accelerate the development of this promising technology from our internal lymphatic and immune cell trafficking programs. The expertise and resources that Roche is bringing to the collaboration will help us to potentially address one of the biggest challenges in oligonucleotide-based therapeutic development: oral administration of nucleic acids,” said Daphne Zohar, PureTech’s co-founder and CEO.

Separately, Roche has announced that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Breakthrough Device Designation to its Elecsys cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) immunoassays for evaluating Alzheimer’s disease (AD) or other causes of dementia.

Roche said measuring biomarkers with CSF immunoassays, associated with AD pathology, increases certainty of a diagnosis of AD and can help to evaluate the progression of the disease.