Arbutus Biopharma Corporation (NASDAQ:ABUS) Files An 8-K Other Events
Item 8.01. Other Events.
On July 23, 2020 the United States Patent and Trademark Office before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (\”PTAB\”) announced their decision in Moderna Therapeutics, Inc.\’s challenge of the validity of U.S. Patent 8,058,069 (\”the \’069 Patent\”). In this decision the PTAB determined no challenged claims were unpatentable. While Arbutus Biopharma, Inc. (\”Arbutus\”) is the patent holder, this patent has been licensed to Genevant Sciences Ltd. (\”Genevant\”).
As previously disclosed, in April 2018 Arbutus entered into an agreement with Roivant Sciences Ltd., its largest shareholder, to launch Genevant, a company focused on the discovery, development, and commercialization of a broad range of RNA-based therapeutics enabled by Arbutus\’ lipid nanoparticle (\”LNP\”) and ligand conjugate delivery technologies. Arbutus licensed exclusive rights to its LNP and ligand conjugate delivery platforms to Genevant for RNA-based applications outside of HBV, except to the extent certain rights had already been licensed to other third parties. Arbutus retained all rights to its LNP and conjugate delivery platforms for HBV. The \’069 Patent was included in this license agreement between Genevant and Arbutus.
Arbutus is entitled to receive tiered low single digit royalties on future sales of Genevant products covered by the licensed patents. If Genevant enters into a sub-license agreement, Arbutus would receive twenty percent of the revenue received by Genevant for this sublicensing of the intellectual property licensed by Arbutus to Genevant.
Arbutus owns approximately 40% of the common equity of Genevant. Genevant has issued convertible debt securities to other investors. If those securities are converted to common shares, or additional capital is invested into Genevant by other parties, Arbutus\’ ownership interest in Genevant will be significantly diluted. Arbutus\’ entitlement to receive future royalties or sublicensing revenue will not be reduced by any dilution of Arbutus\’ equity ownership position in Genevant.
About Arbutus Biopharma Corporation (NASDAQ:ABUS)
Arbutus Biopharma Corporation, formerly Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corporation, is a therapeutic solutions company. The Company is engaged in discovering, developing and commercializing a cure for patients suffering from chronic hepatitis B infection (HBV), a disease of the liver caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV). It is developing a pipeline focused on advancing Ribo Nucleic Acid interference therapeutics (RNAi) using its Lipid Nanoparticle technology. The Company’s lead RNAi HBV candidate, ARB-1467, eliminates HBV surface antigen expression in patients chronically infected with HBV. ARB-1467 is being developed as a multi-component RNAi therapeutic that targets various sites on the HBV genome. It is also developing small molecule covalently closed circular deoxyribonucleic acid (cccDNA) formation inhibitors, multiple small molecule orally bioavailable inhibitors of HBV surface antigen production and secretion, cccDNA epigenetic modifiers and stimulator of interferon genes agonists.
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