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Genmab, CureVac sign $10M up-front deal to develop mRNA-based therapies

Genmab A/S is partnering with CureVac AG for the research and development of messenger RNA, or mRNA-based antibody products, in a deal worth $10 million upfront.

Messenger RNA is a type of RNA that can be used as a data carrier to tell the body to create proteins to fight disease, the companies said in a Dec. 19 press release.

CureVac will also receive a €20 million equity investment from Genmab as part of the deal. The company will partly fund the development costs of a potential drug candidate up to filing applications for regulatory approvals, after which Genmab will be responsible for the development and commercialization of the therapy. CureVac will be eligible for future milestone payments and tiered royalties on the therapy as well.

Genmab will also have an option for up to three other commercial licenses to CureVac's mRNA technology exercisable within a five-year period. Upon choosing one of these options, Genmab will fund all development and commercialization of the potential treatment, while CureVac will be eligible to receive between $275 million and $368 million in payments.

CureVac is a privately owned German company that develops mRNA therapeutics aimed at fighting a wide range of diseases, including cancer.