Vernalis and Servier Achieve Research Milestone in First Oncology Collaboration and the Collaboration is Expanded and Extended

3 October 2011


Vernalis plc and Servier today announce they have achieved a research milestone in their oncology drug discovery collaboration initiated in May 2007.  Vernalis will receive a payment of €0.5m from Servier in recognition of reaching this stage in the programme.

This collaboration currently focused on developing two promising oncology targets involved in protein-protein interactions, has now been extended to a third oncology target. Under the terms of the collaboration, which utilises Vernalis’ proprietary drug discovery platform, Vernalis receives fees and research milestones and a potential share in the downstream success of the product.  Financial terms are not disclosed.

Ian Garland, CEO of Vernalis commented: “This milestone and the extension of our collaboration to a third target is a very strong endorsement of our fragment and structure-based drug discovery platforms.  We have, over the last four years, developed an excellent collaborative relationship with Servier and look forward to continued success with these collaborations”.

Emmanuel Canet, MD, PhD, President Servier Research and Development, added:  “We are very satisfied with this collaboration showing the added value of integrated structural biology and reaching an important milestone on a truly innovative oncology target. This is a step further in our aim to finalise the discovery of innovative compounds with potential use in therapeutic indications with high unmet medical need.  Cancer represents a major cause of mortality worldwide and Servier is committed to providing patients with novel therapeutic approaches for treating this devastating disease”       

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Vernalis Contacts



Ian Garland, Chief Executive Officer 

+44 (0) 118 989 9360

David Mackney, Chief Financial Officer



Brunswick Group



Jon Coles 

+44 (0) 20 7404 5959

Kristin Shine



Taylor Rafferty



Rob Newman

+44 (0) 20 7614 2900

Faisal Kanth


Notes to Editors

About Servier

Servier is a privately-run French research-based pharmaceutical company with a 2010 turnover of €3.7 billion Servier invests 25% of its turnover in R&D.  Current therapeutic domains for Servier medicines are cardiovascular, metabolic, neurological, psychiatric and bone and joint diseases as well as oncology.  Servier is established in 140 countries worldwide with over 20,000 employees.  More info at:

About Vernalis

Vernalis is a revenue generating development stage pharmaceutical company with significant expertise in taking promising product candidates along a commercially-focused path to market.  The Group has one marketed product, frovatriptan for the acute treatment of migraine, and eight candidates in development, seven of which are designated priority programmes.  Four of these priority development programmes are currently unpartnered and three are partnered. Pipeline programmes are derived from both our own research activities where we have significant expertise in fragment and structure based drug discovery, as well as from collaborations.  Our technologies, capabilities and products are endorsed by collaborations with Endo, GSK, Lundbeck, Menarini, Novartis and Servier.





Phase I

Phase II

Phase III


Marketing Rights


CNS Programmes


Acute Migraine






Menarini & Endo Pharma










Parkinson’s Disease








Oncology Programmes
















Chroma Therapeutics


















Other Therapeutic Areas


Inflammatory Disease










Asthma/ Allergic Rhinitis






Verona Pharma


Vernalis Forward-Looking Statement

This news release may contain forward-looking statements that reflect the Company's current expectations regarding future events including the clinical development and regulatory clearance of the Company's products, the Company's ability to find partners for the development and commercialisation of its products, as well as the Company's future capital raising activities. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties. Actual events could differ materially from those projected herein and depend on a number of factors including the success of the Company's research strategies, the applicability of the discoveries made therein, the successful and timely completion of clinical studies, the uncertainties related to the regulatory process, the ability of the Company to identify and agree beneficial terms with suitable partners for the commercialisation and/or development of its products, as well as the achievement of expected synergies from such transactions, the acceptance of frovatriptan and other products by consumers and medical professionals, the successful integration of completed mergers and acquisitions and achievement of expected synergies from such transactions, and the ability of the Company to identify and consummate suitable strategic and business combination transactions.



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Servier and Vernalis plc announce achievement of 3 milestones in their oncology drug discovery collaboration

Servier and Vernalis plc are pleased to announce the achievement of two research milestones and one clinical milestone in their oncology drug discovery collaboration, triggering a total payment of €2 million to Vernalis.


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