Voyager Therapeutics Enters Capsid License Agreement and Strategic Collaboration with Novartis

Voyager Therapeutics have announced a strategic collaboration and capsid license agreement with Novartis Pharma AG, a subsidiary of Novartis AG to advance potential gene therapies for Huntington’s disease (HD) and spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). Voyager will provide Novartis a target-exclusive license to access Voyager’s TRACER capsids and other intellectual property for the respective diseases, and Voyager and Novartis will collaborate to advance a preclinical gene therapy candidate for HD.

“We are thrilled to expand our existing relationship with Novartis, a global leader in the gene therapy field,” said Alfred W. Sandrock, Jr., M.D., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Voyager. “Combining the proven capabilities of Novartis in gene therapy development and commercialisation with Voyager’s next-generation TRACER capsids and payloads could enable the advancement of important new therapies for patients. In addition, the consideration Voyager will receive from this collaboration will strengthen our balance sheet and extend our runway into mid-2026.”

“We look forward to broadening our work with Voyager to help bring forward novel, high-impact gene therapies with the potential to improve the lives of patients affected by severe neurologic conditions,” said Fiona Marshall, President of Biomedical Research at Novartis. “We believe Voyager’s TRACER capsids hold promise for enabling next-generation gene therapies for diseases of the central nervous system, aligning well with our deep neuroscience expertise and gene therapy leadership at Novartis.”

Novartis previously exercised options to license novel capsids generated from Voyager’s TRACER capsid discovery platform for use in gene therapy programs against two undisclosed neurological disease targets.

Under the terms of the agreement, Novartis has agreed to pay Voyager $100 million of consideration up front, including a $20 million purchase of newly issued equity in Voyager. Voyager is eligible to receive up to $1.2 billion in preclinical, development, regulatory and sales milestones, as well as tiered royalties on global net sales of products incorporating Voyager’s TRACER capsids. Novartis will obtain target-exclusive access to Voyager’s TRACER capsids related to SMA for the duration of the agreement and will be responsible for all development and commercialisation. Novartis will also receive worldwide rights to Voyager’s AAV gene therapy for HD, leveraging Voyager’s TRACER capsids and proprietary payloads. Voyager will be responsible for preclinical advancement and Novartis will be responsible for all clinical development and commercialization for the HD program.

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