Yumanity Therapeutics Announces Strategic Research Collaboration and License Agreement with Merck Focused on Accelerating the Development of New Treatments for Neurodegenerative Diseases

Strategic Alliance Combines Yumanity’s Innovative Drug Discovery Platform with Merck’s Development and Commercialization Expertise in Neuroscience 

Merck Gains Exclusive Rights to Two Novel Yumanity Pipeline Programs for ALS and Frontotemporal Lobar Dementia  

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 24, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Yumanity Therapeutics, a leader in the discovery and development of innovative, disease-modifying therapies for neurodegenerative diseases, today announced that it has entered into a strategic research collaboration and license agreement with Merck (known as MSD outside the United States and Canada) focused on accelerating the development of new treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. Under the terms of the agreement, Merck will gain exclusive rights to two novel Yumanity pipeline programs for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal lobar dementia (FTLD).  Yumanity and Merck will collaborate to advance the two preclinical programs during the research term, after which Merck has the right to continue clinical development and commercialization.

Under the collaboration agreement, Yumanity will receive an upfront payment and is eligible to receive milestone payments totaling approximately $500M associated with the successful development of marketed products for pipeline programs, as well as royalties on net sales.  Merck is also joining existing Yumanity investors (Fidelity Management & Research Company, Redmile Group, Pfizer Ventures, Alexandria Venture Investments, Tony Coles, and Dolby Family Ventures) by participating in a Series C round of financing.

“We are excited to collaborate with the Merck neuroscience team focused on the goal of bringing novel therapeutic options to ALS and FTLD patients,” said Richard Peters, CEO of Yumanity.  “This alliance reflects our shared commitment to neurodegenerative diseases that continue to have high unmet need. We look forward to a productive collaboration.”

“There remains tremendous unmet medical need for the treatment of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal lobar dementia,” said Fiona Marshall, Vice President of Neuroscience Discovery, Merck Research Laboratories.  “We look forward to working with scientists at Yumanity to advance research and evaluate the potential for therapeutic intervention in these neurodegenerative diseases.”

About Yumanity Therapeutics
Yumanity Therapeutics is transforming drug discovery for neurodegenerative diseases. The company is focused on discovering disease-modifying therapies for patients with Parkinson’s, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and Alzheimer’s disease. Yumanity’s innovative approach to drug discovery and development concentrates on reversing the cellular phenotypes and disease pathologies caused by protein misfolding. For more information, please visit Yumanity.com.

Company Contact:
Paulash Mohsen
Chief Business Officer
Yumanity Therapeutics