News Column

ISIS Pharmaceuticals' and Biogen idec's innovative collaboration voted breakthrough alliance of 2014

May 14, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Biotech Week -- Isis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ISIS) announced that the strategic alliance between Isis and Biogen Idec (NASDAQ:BIIB) has been honored with the Alliance 2014 Breakthrough Award. The award, sponsored by Thomson Reuters Recap, was presented at the Allicense 2014 Conference in San Francisco on April 29, 2014 (see also Pharmaceutical Companies).

"We are grateful for the award and recognition of our innovative and productive partnership with Isis," said Richard Brudnick, vice president and co-head of business development at Biogen Idec. "We believe our collaborations with Isis hold great potential for the discovery of novel targets and the development of important new therapeutics to treat serious neurological disorders."

"Our business strategy maximizes the value of our antisense technology and our drugs in development by collaborating with partners that have complementary development expertise. Through the successes of our partnerships, we have raised substantial financing that supports our development efforts and leverages our partners' skills to advance antisense drugs into new therapeutic areas. This is the third time we have been recognized by our peers in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry as an innovative and collaborative company," said B. Lynne Parshall, chief operating officer at Isis Pharmaceuticals. "This award is especially befitting as our collaboration with Biogen Idec combines the unique strengths of each partner to develop novel therapies for neurological disorders with unmet medical needs. With three previous partnerships, we have created a strong and successful relationship with Biogen Idec. Indeed, our collaborations have already significantly enhanced the development of our spinal muscular atrophy and myotonic dystrophy programs. We look forward to advancing new treatments for neurological disorders into the clinic and achieving further success in our collaborations with Biogen Idec."

Biogen Idec and Isis have established four collaborations focused on leveraging antisense technology to advance the treatment of neurological and neuromuscular disorders. This alliance combines Isis's expertise in antisense technology to evaluate potential neurological targets and discover antisense drugs with Biogen Idec's capability to develop therapies for neurological disorders. Isis is primarily responsible for drug discovery and early development of antisense therapies. Biogen Idec has the option to license each antisense program at a particular stage in development. Current development-stage programs include antisense drugs to treat spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), ISIS-SMN(Rx), and myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1), ISIS-DMPK(Rx).

Annually, the Allicense Conference nominates five biotech-pharmaceutical alliances as the breakthrough deals of the previous year. The winning deal is determined by votes from biotech and pharmaceutical business development and licensing executives.


Isis is exploiting its leadership position in antisense technology to discover and develop novel drugs for its product pipeline and for its partners. Isis' broad pipeline consists of 32 drugs to treat a wide variety of diseases with an emphasis on cardiovascular, metabolic, severe and rare diseases, including neurological disorders, and cancer. Isis' partner, Genzyme, is commercializing Isis' lead product, KYNAMRO(®), in the United States and other countries for the treatment of patients with homozygous FH. Isis' patents provide strong and extensive protection for its drugs and technology. Additional information about Isis is available at

Keywords for this news article include: Antisense Technology, Biotechnology, Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc., Pharmaceutical Companies, Bioengineering.

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Source: Biotech Week

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