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Biogen acquires gene therapy company Nightstar Therapeutics

A UK company that is developing genetic treatments for retinitis pigmentosa and choroideremia has been acquired by a US biotech firm

18 Mar 2019 by Selina Powell

The UK company behind pioneering genetic treatments for inherited eye disease has been acquired by US biotechnology company, Biogen, for approximately $800 million (£604 million).

Nightstar Therapeutics is developing gene therapies for choroideremia and retinitis pigmentosa in collaboration with Professor Robert MacLaren and other researchers from the University of Oxford.

The announcement follows the acquisition of US-based gene therapy firm Spark Therapeutics Swiss company Roche for $4.8 billion (£3.6 billion).

A gene therapy trial carried out by Nightstar Therapeutics in choroideremia patients resulted in all patients who received the intervention without complications either gaining or maintaining vision in the affected eye over a five-year period.

A trial initiated in 2017 by the company recruited 24 patients with X-linked retinitis pigmentosa to undergo gene therapy.

Image credit: Pixabay

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