Regulus Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of innovative medicines targeting microRNAs, has entered into a new collaboration agreement with Biogen Idec to expand its research focused on identifying microRNAs as biomarkers for multiple sclerosis (MS) under its Regulus microMarkers division. The new research will focus on profiling a large number of whole blood samples from a cohort of MS patients who have been treated with a Biogen Idec MS therapy to identify potential microRNA signatures.
Regulus will receive $2 million upfront and is eligible for future payments upon achievement of certain milestones related to the identification of potential microRNA signatures.
Regulus and Biogen Idec began their collaboration in August 2012 to identify potential microRNA biomarkers in MS. Regulus used its highly reproducible, proprietary technology platform to extract, profile and analyze microRNAs from small volumes of blood (plasma, serum or whole blood) to profile over 400 serum samples from MS patients and compare those profiles against the profiles of healthy volunteers. The results of these experiments helped define the scope of the research under the new collaboration agreement, which resulted in a termination of the August 2012 agreement.