Sanofi will assume all preclinical and clinical R&D efforts for the novel aminoglycoside antibiotic candidates of Warp Drive Bio, after it reached a milestone in the companies’ antibiotic discovery program.
The program is among several that Warp Drive Bio is pursuing as part of discovery efforts based on its novel Genome Mining™ technology platform.
“With the hand-off of this program to Sanofi, Warp Drive will now focus on our other programs, both anti-infectives and for other diseases, deploying our proprietary Genome Mining and SMART™ (Small Molecule Assisted Receptor Targeting) platforms,” Warp Drive Bio CEO Laurence E. Reid said in a statement.
Those programs, he said, include an RAS cancer program also partnered with Sanofi. The two companies launched a broader research collaboration in January focused on developing drugs targeting human oncogenes, including RAS—as well as new aminoglycoside antibiotics targeting Gram-negative bacteria.
As part of the broader collaboration, Sanofi agreed to oversee global commercialization of the antibiotic products, agreeing in return to pay Warp Drive research, clinical, and regulatory milestones, plus tiered royalties and commercial milestones based on global sales.
The alliance could generate more than $750 million for Warp Drive, with which Sanofi has been a major investor and strategic partner since the biotech was launched in 2012 with $125 million in initial funding.
Sanofi’s partnership with Warp Drive Bio is an outgrowth of the pharma giant’s Sunrise initiative, a strategic partnership model designed to invest in early-stage opportunities that align with Sanofi’s expert development and commercialization abilities.