Vertex & Kymera to develop targeted protein degradation medicines

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Vertex Pharmaceuticals and Kymera Therapeutics have entered into a four-year strategic research and development collaboration to advance small molecule protein degraders against multiple targets.

The collaboration will leverage Kymera’s expertise in targeted protein degradation and its proprietary Pegasus drug discovery platform together with Vertex’s scientific, clinical, and regulatory capabilities to accelerate the development of first-in-class medicines for people with serious diseases.

“This collaboration with Kymera will enhance our drug discovery capabilities and support our strategy of investing in scientific innovation to develop transformative medicines for serious diseases,” said Mark Bunnage, Senior Vice President and Site Head, Boston Research at Vertex.

Laurent Audoly, President and CEO, Kymera Therapeutics, added: “This strategic partnership will broaden the application of targeted protein degradation to address serious diseases beyond cancer with limited or no treatment options.”

The four-year agreement will see Vertex will pay Kymera $70 million upfront including an equity investment in the company.

Kymera will conduct research activities in multiple targets under the collaboration. Upon designation of a clinical development candidate, Vertex has the option to exclusively license molecules against the designated target.

Kymera is also eligible to receive more than $1 billion in potential payments based upon the successful achievement of specified research, development, regulatory, and commercial milestones for up to six programs optioned as part of the collaboration.