Novartis and Alnylam Announce Liver Therapy Collaboration

The collaboration will leverage Alynlam’s proprietary small interfering RNA (siRNA) technology to inhibit a target discovered by Novartis.

On Jan. 6, 2022, Novartis and Alnylam announced a therapeutic development collaboration aimed toward treating end-stage liver disease (ESLD). The companies will use Alynlam’s proprietary small interfering RNA (siRNA) technology to inhibit a target discovered by Novartis.

According to a company press release, ESLD is a progressive illness, most often resulting from cirrhosis, that is characterized by the destruction of healthy liver tissue and the loss of critical liver function. Liver transplants are the only treatment available for ESLD, but constraints on organ supplies and the invasive nature of the procedure make it infeasible for many people. The goal of this collaboration is to find a treatment that will promote the regrowth of functional liver cells, providing an alternative to transplantation for patients with liver failure.

“There remains an enormous unmet need for new types of medicines to address end-stage liver disease,” said Jay Bradner, president of the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research, in the press release. “Building on a legacy of leadership in regenerative medicine, we have devised a restorative strategy that could potentially deliver a transformative benefit to patients with liver failure. We’re delighted now to work alongside Alnylam in this new collaboration, as the Alnylam siRNA platform is optimally suited to translate this concept to clinical investigation.”

During the exclusive three-year research collaboration, Alnylam will develop and test potential siRNAs using target-specific assays developed by Novartis. Once a lead candidate is identified, further development and clinical research will be conducted by Novartis.

Source: Novartis