By Cecilia Butini
Merck KgaA said Monday that it has signed agreements with Canadian cell therapy firm PanCELLa Inc. and with U.S.-based biotechnology company Takara Bio USA, Inc. to license them its CRISPR genome-editing technology.
The German health-care company said licensing of the technology--which allows for the cutting of portions of DNA in order to make changes--has the goal of accelerating drug discovery research in order to develop new therapies.
PanCELLa will use Merck's CRISPR patent in the development of therapeutics with genetically modified cell lines, the company said.
Under the agreement, Takara Bio will use Merck's CRISPR integration and vector technologies for the development of its own vector products and cell engineering services, Merck said. In molecular biology, vectors are used to carry genetic material into cells.
Merck didn't disclose payment details related to the licensing agreements.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires