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Silence Therapeutics Receives Comprehensive Protection for RNAi Structural Modification Technology in Single European Patent
Date:10/20/2010

LONDON, Oct. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Silence Therapeutics plc (AIM: SLN) ("Silence" or the "Company") announces that the European Patent Office (EPO) has granted a new patent that provides broad protection on novel aspects of the RNAi structural modification technology known as the "Zamore Design Rules."  European patent number 1 633 890 titled "Methods and Compositions for Enhancing the Efficacy and Specificity of RNAi" was published today in the European Patent Bulletin.  The European patent covers various breakthrough structural modification methods and compositions which Silence believes are fundamental for the development and commercialization of RNAi therapeutics with enhanced efficacy.

"The granting of this comprehensive patent in Europe is a significant milestone for Silence in our ongoing effort to build one of the world's leading RNAi intellectual property positions.  We have consistently built a strong IP estate around the Zamore technology in the U.S. and have now extended our global coverage to Europe with the granting of this critical patent," stated Philip Haworth, Ph.D., chief executive officer of Silence Therapeutics.  "We have often stated our belief that the 'Zamore Design Rules' represent significant IP to enable the process of bringing effective RNAi therapeutics to market.  With this latest patent grant from the EPO, we are excited to be able to offer potential collaborators or licensing partners access to this strongly protected Zamore technology in both the U.S. and Europe."

The issued patent's method and composition claims include:

  • Methods of enhancing the ability of an antisense strand of an RNAi agent to act as a guide strand
  • RNAi or siRNA agents for enhancing silencing of a target mRNA in a subject
  • Compositions for siRNA duplexes include pre-miRNA and shRNA and vectors to perform the methods described herein

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