Regeneron and Avalanche Announce $640 Million Collaboration to Develop Next Generation Gene Therapy


Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP has advised Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a leading science-based biopharmaceutical company, in its collaboration with Avalanche Biotechnologies, Inc. to develop novel gene therapy products for the treatment of ophthalmologic diseases. The collaboration covers novel gene therapy vectors and proprietary molecules, discovered jointly by Avalanche and Regeneron, and developed using the Avalanche Ocular BioFactoryTM, an adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based, proprietary, next-generation platform for the discovery and development of gene therapy vectors for ophthalmology.
Under the terms of the agreement, Avalanche will receive an upfront cash payment, contingent payments of up to $640 million upon achievement of certain development and regulatory milestones, plus a royalty on worldwide net sales of collaboration products. The collaboration covers up to eight distinct therapeutic targets, and Regeneron will have exclusive worldwide rights for each product it moves forward in clinical development. In addition, Avalanche has the option to share in development costs and profits for products directed toward two collaboration therapeutic targets selected by Avalanche.
The Orrick team was led by M&A and private equity partner King Milling and included M&A and private equity managing associate Susannah Nagle, tax partner John Narducci, tax senior associate Jamie Larkin and intellectual property senior counsel Kurt Mulville.