Mutations in more than 270 genes have been implicated in inherited eye diseases like retinitis pigmentosa. Now, Biogen has formed a research pact with Harvard’s Massachusetts Eye and Ear that’s aimed at developing a gene therapy to help some patients with these blinding diseases, according to a FierceBiotech report.
The gene at the center of the new agreement, PRPF31, has been linked to autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa. PRPF31 mutations are believed to cause an estimated 25% of all retinitis pigmentosa cases. The partners did not disclose the financial terms of the deal. The tie-up comes 8 months after a Mass Eye and Ear team published preclinical research demonstrating a gene therapy technique for repairing cells with mutated PRPF31 genes.