Merck Serono and Compugen have established Neviah Genomics, a start-up company focused on the discovery and development of novel biomarkers for the prediction of drug-induced toxicity. Neviah Genomics will operate out of the Merck Serono Israel Bioincubator. Merck Serono Ventures will provide the unit's initial funding, while Compugen will utilize certain proprietary predictive discovery technologies and receive an equity ownership in the new company and a right to royalties from potential future sales. Financial terms were not disclosed.
This agreement follows a successful collaboration between Merck Serono and Compugen for the discovery of biomarker signatures for drug-induced toxicity during 2009. The companies believe that Neviah Genomics could satisfy the growing market need for products to predict toxicity profiles of lead drug candidates at an early stage of development.
Anat Cohen-Dayag, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Compugen said, “Following our prior successful collaboration with Merck Serono, we are very pleased to expand this relationship and enter into this new and exciting partnership. We are honored to be the first Israeli company to benefit from the establishment of Merck Serono's Israel Bioincubator and look forward to taking our partnership to the next level.”