Voyager Therapeutics Provides Update on AbbVie Vectorized Antibody Collaborations

Cambridge, Massachusetts, UNITED STATES

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Aug. 03, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Voyager Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: VYGR), a clinical-stage gene therapy company focused on developing life-changing treatments for severe neurological diseases, today announced the termination of its tau and alpha-synuclein vectorized antibody collaborations with AbbVie. Voyager retains full rights to the vectorization technology and certain novel vectorized antibodies developed as part of the collaborations.

“Our efforts to harness AAV-based gene therapy to produce antibodies directly in the brain and overcome major limitations with delivery of current biologics across the blood-brain barrier have been highly productive,” said Omar Khwaja, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Medical Officer and Head of R&D at Voyager. “Through the tau and alpha-synuclein collaborations, we believe we have made considerable progress against targets for neurodegenerative diseases with this novel approach, reinforcing our enthusiasm for its potential to deliver therapeutically efficacious levels of biologics to the brain and central nervous system. We believe our continued work on discovery and design of novel AAV capsids with substantially improved blood-brain barrier penetrance will also considerably broaden the potential of AAV-based gene therapy, including vectorized antibodies or other biologics, for the treatment of severe neurological diseases.”

The tau and alpha-synuclein research collaborations were formed in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Under the terms of the collaboration agreements, Voyager received upfront payments to perform research and preclinical development of vectorized antibodies directed against tau and alpha-synuclein. With the conclusion of the collaborations, Voyager has regained full clinical development and commercialization rights to certain product candidates developed within the context of the collaboration for the tau program. Voyager is free to pursue vectorized antibody programs for tau and alpha-synuclein alone or in collaboration with another partner.

Voyager does not anticipate any changes to its cash runway guidance due to the termination of the agreements. As of March 31, 2020, the Company had cash, cash equivalents and marketable debt securities of $250.9 million, which, along with amounts expected to be received for reimbursement of development costs from Neurocrine Biosciences, is expected to be sufficient to meet Voyager’s projected operating expenses and capital expenditure requirements into mid-2022.

About Voyager Therapeutics

Voyager Therapeutics is a clinical-stage gene therapy company focused on developing life-changing treatments for severe neurological diseases. Voyager is committed to advancing the field of AAV gene therapy through innovation and investment in vector engineering and optimization, manufacturing, and dosing and delivery techniques. Voyager’s wholly owned and partnered pipeline focuses on severe neurological diseases for which effective new therapies are needed, including Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, Friedreich’s ataxia, and other severe neurological diseases. For more information, please visit or follow @VoyagerTx on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements for the purposes of the safe harbor provisions under The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and other federal securities laws. The use of words such as “may,” “might,” “will,” “would,” “should,” “expect,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “undoubtedly,” “project,” “intend,” “future,” “potential,” or “continue,” and other similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. For example, all statements Voyager makes regarding the ability of Voyager to maintain research and development activities currently included within the collaboration agreements with AbbVie; Voyager’s ability to advance its AAV-based gene therapies and its ability to continue to develop its gene therapy platform; the scope of the intellectual property rights and other rights that will be available to Voyager following the termination of the AbbVie collaboration agreements;  the anticipated effects of the termination of the AbbVie collaboration agreements on Voyager’s anticipated financial results, including Voyager’s available cash, cash equivalents and marketable debt securities; and Voyager’s ability to fund its operating expenses with its current cash, cash equivalents and marketable debt securities through a stated time period are forward looking. All forward-looking statements are based on estimates and assumptions by Voyager’s management that, although Voyager believes such forward-looking statements to be reasonable, are inherently uncertain. All forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those that Voyager expected. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, the continued cooperation of AbbVie in activities arising from the termination of the AbbVie collaboration agreements, the development of the gene therapy platform; Voyager’s scientific approach and general development progress; Voyager’s ability to create and protect its intellectual property; and the sufficiency of Voyager’s cash resources. These statements are also subject to a number of material risks and uncertainties that are described in Voyager’s most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, as updated by its subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. All information in the press release is as of the date of this press release, and any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it was made. Voyager undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise this information or any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

Paul Cox
VP, Investor Relations

Sheryl Seapy