Privately-held Santaris, of course, has been a fierce rival of
Not long ago, ISIS sued Santaris for unduly hiding under the Research Exemption in its various relationships including Pfizer, Enzon, GSK, and Shire. In parallel,
Regulus announced this week that it was awarded another HCV miR-122 patent, in Japan, concluding with the remark that it was continuing to pay 'attention to hepatitis C'- somewhat ironical given that its clinical entry seems to be delayed forever. Seeing that announcement, I had thought that this was one of the unnecessary PRs that I often take as a sign of weakness. In hindsight, it was probably just a case of adding insult to injury.
I myself have had reservations about the wisdom of building the company’s financial future on a program for which it may be lacking access to some of the key patents in the space. Although one may assume that in the wake of its scientifically leading efforts in miR-122/HCV, Santaris will have in turn built IP to which Regulus would need access if it were to develop its own miR-122 antagonist, such a strategy has been a high-stakes gamble for sure. Along with the
Clearly, an exit in the form of an IPO or takeover had long been overdue for that company. The company’s technology, pipeline, and relationships, also in light of what’s out there already (i.e. ISIS and AVI Biopharma), should have easily supported this, if not for the lawsuit and threats thereof.