Sciwind Biosciences And SynerK Join Forces To Develop siRNA Therapeutics

by Joy Lin
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Sciwind Biosciences, a China-based company focused on metabolic diseases, has announced a collaboration with RNAi-focused SynerK to discover and develop small interfering RNA (siRNA) drugs for the treatment of liver and metabolic diseases. 

The partnership combines Sciwind’s expertise in disease biology and clinical development capabilities with SynerK’s siRNA delivery technology and experience in developing RNAi therapeutics.

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The siRNA Approach to Diseases 

Also known as gene silencing, RNAi sabotages mRNA to prevent their translation, thereby reducing target protein expression. siRNAs, a form of RNAi, are incorporated into a complex which binds target mRNAs to promote their degradation. 

The companies will attempt to identify new therapeutic targets for a broad range of liver and metabolic diseases and develop siRNA therapeutics against these targets. 

For delivery of the siRNA payload into cells, SynerK has developed a delivery platform that promises high delivery efficiency and a good safety profile in vitro and in vivo. Using the platform, SynerK has advanced several siRNA-based drugs into preclinical development. 

siRNAs present a lucrative and underdeveloped market opportunity in China. Besides Sciwind and SynerK, Hansoh Pharmaceuticals has reached out to two companies, Silence Therapeutics and OliX Pharmaceuticals, to develop siRNA. The deal with Silence is heavily back-loaded with $1.3 billion in milestone payments, while the OliX collaboration could potentially net the siRNA developer $450 million in milestones.

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