Tuesday, May 10, 1983
South San Francisco, Calif. -- May 10, 1983 --Genentech, Inc. announced today that it has been granted exclusive commercialization rights on inventions related to the research of Dr. Desire Collen, University of Leuven, in the area of tissue-type plasminogen activator (t-PA). The rights were granted by Innovi, a Belgium company established to commercialize products resulting from university research.
"Genentech is particularly proud to be associated with this transfer of technology from academia to industry," said Robert A. Swanson, president and chief executive officer of Genentech. "Dr. Collen is one of the foremost researchers in the area of t-PA. This agreement gives us the opportunity to bring his discoveries out of the laboratory and into the marketplace."
T-PA is a natural part of the body's blood-clot-dissolving system. Laboratory and animal studies indicate that it may have significant potential as a thrombolytic therapy for victims of heart attack and other cardiovascular diseases. Human clinical evaluation is expected to begin later this year.
Genentech has been collaborating on t-PA with Dr. Collen for over two years. Dr. Collen's research group at the Center for Thrombosis and Vascular Research at the University of Leuven, Belgium, first purified and characterized t-PA from human tissues and cell cultures. Genentech researchers then utilized recombinant DNA techniques to produce quantities of the product.
Innovi obtained commercial rights from Leuven Research and Development, the transfer bureau of the University of Leuven, on Dr. Collen's invention in this area. Innovi is a Belgian company established in the field of t-PA. Innovi has stated that research or royalty income to Innovi will be reinvested in the scientific activities of Dr. Collen.
Genentech has targeted t-PA as a product it will bring to the U.S. market under its own label. As announced previously, two Japanese companies, Kyowa Hakko Co., Ltd. and Mitsubishi Chemical Industries, provided research funding on t-PA in exchange for licensing rights in Japan and possibly other Asian countries.
Genentech, Inc. is a leader in the development, manufacture and marketing of recombinant DNA products for pharmaceutical, agricultural and industrial chemicals markets. Human gamma interferon will be manufactured and marketed by Genentech in the U.S. under its own label, in conjunction with Genentech Clinical Partners, Ltd., a limited partnership.
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