Senesco Technologies, Inc. (“Senesco” or the “Company”) (NYSE AMEX: SNT) announced today that it has re-structured its research and development agreement with Rahan Meristem (1998) Ltd (“Rahan”) to reflect the priorities of both Companies.
“I am very pleased with the scientific progress we have made in the collaboration and the results that have been obtained in field trials for shelf life of banana fruit and disease resistance to a fungal disease that is ravaging banana plants world-wide,” said John E. Thompson, Ph.D., Founder and Chief Scientific Officer. “We look forward to seeing our joint efforts continue to fruition.”
The new agreement is an amendment to the original research and development agreement, dated May 1999, that provided Rahan access to Senesco’s proprietary technology enabling the two Companies to engage in a jointly-funded research and development program relating to the development and production of banana plants with improved traits. The new agreement re-structures the collaboration from a cost and profit sharing arrangement to a license agreement, which provides Senesco with a mid- to upper-single digit royalty on incremental revenue as defined in the agreement, from the sale of Rahan’s banana seedling products containing Senesco’s technology without any future payments by Senesco for the costs of development and commercialization. If a product, which incorporates Senesco technology, is commercialized by Rahan, the royalties will be payable from first commercial sale for the longer of ten (10) years or the expiration of the last valid patent on a country-by-country basis.
“Our collaboration with Rahan, which is our longest, has resulted in excellent progress towards its goals and reflects the importance of agricultural applications of eIF5A,” said Leslie J. Browne, Ph.D., President and CEO of Senesco. “Moving forward we needed to re-structure our agreement in order to optimize the return on investment for our shareholders. The new agreement allows Senesco to benefit from applications of our technology in the Rahan field without losing our current focus on the human therapeutic applications of eIF5A.”