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Promega Corporation Enters License Agreement with MilliporeSigma to Access Foundational CRISPR Integration Technology

Scientists will have new view into natural cell activity, accelerating drug development

Madison, WI USA. (December 19, 2019)

Promega Corporation today announced it has signed a license agreement with MilliporeSigma, a leader in genome editing, to access MilliporeSigma’s foundational CRISPR genome-editing technology. Under the agreement, Promega will create new research products for investigating endogenous biology, including those for drug development. These tools will allow researchers to better read the physiological or natural levels of protein expression, providing a more accurate understanding of protein behavior.

“This license further expands the potential of CRISPR, and, more importantly, gives scientists a new view into natural cell activity,” said Bill Linton, president and CEO, Promega Corporation. “This is quite a meaningful contribution to many areas of applied research in such fields as cancer and neuroscience.”

The combination of CRISPR-Cas9 and Promega protein reporters have proven powerful in understanding critical areas of biology. A paper in the journal ACS Chemical Biology explains how the Promega HiBiT Protein Tagging System can be combined with CRISPR-Cas9-mediated gene editing to tag endogenous proteins and simplify their study under natural expression conditions. Another paper also in ACS Chemical Biology explains a strategy for monitoring PROTAC-mediated degradation of endogenously tagged HiBiT-BET family members in live cells.

“Under this licensing agreement, Promega plans to use our intellectual property to develop CRISPR-edited cell lines, which can play a major role in determining drug efficacy, toxicity and overall development,” said Udit Batra, CEO, MilliporeSigma.

MilliporeSigma intends to continue growing its CRISPR intellectual property portfolio with technologies such as paired Cas9 nickases, which reduce off-target effects, and proxy-CRISPR, which offers researchers more experimental options to accelerate drug development and access to new therapies. MilliporeSigma holds 22 CRISPR-related patents worldwide covering both methods and compositions, including the fundamental use of CRISPR-Cas9 for genetic integration in mammalian cells.

Promega is building a portfolio of CRISPR knock-in cell lines, in addition to custom requests, to meet the demands of customers studying protein dynamics. Learn more about applications of CRISPR knock-in tagging.

About Promega Corporation
Promega Corporation is a leader in providing innovative solutions and technical support to the life sciences industry. The company’s 4,000 products enable scientists worldwide to advance their knowledge in genomics, proteomics, cellular analysis, drug discovery and human identification. Founded in 1978, the company is headquartered in Madison, WI, USA with branches in 16 countries and over 50 global distributors. 

About the Life Science Business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany
The Life Science business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, which operates as MilliporeSigma in the U.S. and Canada, has some 21,000 employees and 59 manufacturing sites worldwide, with a portfolio of more than 300,000 products focused on scientific discovery, biomanufacturing and testing services. Udit Batra is the global chief executive officer of MilliporeSigma.

Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany completed its $17 billion acquisition of Sigma-Aldrich in November 2015, creating a leader in the $125 billion global life science industry.

Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, a leading science and technology company, operates across healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 56,000 employees work to make a positive difference to millions of people’s lives every day by creating more joyful and sustainable ways to live. From advancing gene-editing technologies and discovering unique ways to treat the most challenging diseases to enabling the intelligence of devices – the company is everywhere. In 2018, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany generated sales of €14.8 billion in 66 countries.

The company holds the global rights to the name and trademark “Merck” internationally. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the business sectors of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany operate as EMD Serono in healthcare, MilliporeSigma in life science, and EMD Performance Materials. Since its founding 1668, scientific exploration and responsible entrepreneurship have been key to the company’s technological and scientific advances. To this day, the founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed company. For more information about Merck, KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, visit www.emdgroup.com.