NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Isis Pharmaceuticals (ISIS) and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) have agreed to collaborate and utilize an Isis drug platform to develop therapeutics for rare and serious diseases, including those that are infectious and cause blindness.

Under the agreement, Isis will receive an upfront payment of $35 million from GlaxoSmithKline and is eligible to receive on average up to $20 million in milestones per program. The agreement covers up to six programs. In total, Isis will be eligible to receive license fees and milestone payments of up to $1.5 billion.

In addition, Isis will receive up to double-digit royalties on sales from any product that is successfully commercialized.

Shares of Isis are spiking on the news, up 10.5% to $11.38 in Wednesday morning trading. GlaxoSmithKline stock is essentially flat, up 10 cents to $38.33.

-- Reported by Andrea Tse in New York

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