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$100m Worth Deal with Meiragtx to Enhance the J&J Gene Therapy Unit

February, 2019

Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson has taken a giant leap into gene therapy, with a collaboration deal with UK based biotech company MeiraGTx. The company is also concentrating on working on gene therapies for salivary gland problems and neurodegenerative diseases.

The deal includes licensing of two inherited retinal disorder candidate for a value of $100m, and is proffering nearly $340m additional payments on progress towards market. The returns of this deal include the global rights of the gene therapies for J&J. The candidates for the conditions achromatopsia (ACHM) caused by the mutation of CNGB3 or CNGA3 and X-linked retinitis pigmentosa (XLRP) caused by RPGR gene mutation are in clinical trial phase 1/2.

MeiraGTx and J&J will also work in collaboration on new targets for other inherited conditions. J&J has not been keenly interested in eye disorders, but this deal illustrates rising attention from big pharma due to increasing focus on commercial issues related to gene therapy.

Other gene therapies for the eye diseases are as follows.

Gene Therapies for Eye Diseases

ProductCompanyPharma classStatus
NSR-REP1Nightstar TherapeuticsAAV encoding REP1 gene therapyPhase III
SPK-7001Spark TherapeuticsRab escort protein 1 gene therapyPhase II
RGX-314RegenxbioRetinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator gene therapyPhase I
LuxturnaSpark/NovartisRPE65 gene therapyMarketed
NSR-RPGRNightstar TherapeuticsRPGR gene therapyPhase II
Allergan-Editas Medicine Eye Disease ProgramEditas MedicineGene therapyResearch project


– Rikitha K Murthy,
Research Analyst,
Infoholic Research