Miraculins’ preeclampsia technology is based on a suite of 35 novel biomarkers involved in the development of the placenta and the biology implicated in the development of preeclampsia, a debilitating and potentially fatal complication of pregnancy. The goal of the partnership is to commercialize Miraculins’ biomarkers for worldwide distribution. Through a Collaborative Research and Option Agreement, Inverness, through its Biosite division, will develop tests for Miraculins’ biomarkers and will evaluate their performance in large cohorts of patient blood samples. The biomarkers will also be assessed for their utility in detecting intrauterine growth restriction and other diseases of pregnancy.
In addition to its research and development commitment, Inverness will pay a non refundable fee to Miraculins for the exclusive option to license and commercialize any biomarkers of interest from the program. Miraculins retains certain commercial rights to pursue complementary commercial strategies for the markers and receives from Inverness a secure supply of reagents and certain rights to intellectual property related to the biomarker endoglin.
Inverness can exercise its option to license at any time during the term of the Collaborative Research and Option Agreement. Upon exercise of the option, Miraculins will receive additional fees, developmental and commercial milestone payments, and royalties on sales.
Currently, preeclampsia affects three million mothers worldwide every year and is associated with premature births and infant illness including cerebral palsy, blindness, epilepsy, deafness and lung conditions. There is no effective detection method for the risk of preeclampsia and the cause is unknown. It is estimated that preeclampsia costs the global health care system US$3 billion per year.
"Inverness is the ideal partner for the development and commercialization of a much needed test for preeclampsia", said Christopher J. Moreau, President and CEO of Miraculins. "In addition to Inverness’ established expertise in women’s healthcare, pregnancy and fertility monitoring, we view Inverness’ unique antibody development capabilities, acquired through its 2007 purchase of Biosite Incorporated, as paramount to the value of this collaborative research program. We are pleased to have the development costs and responsibilities for this program supported by Inverness and we believe this deal demonstrates the significant value of both our business model and our preeclampsia technology."