Why Arbutus Biopharma is soaring today – .

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Why Arbutus Biopharma is soaring today – .


What happened

Actions of Arbutus Biopharma (ABUSE 67,50% ) soared Wednesday morning in response to a court ruling in his favor. The stock was up 70.2% as of 11:41 a.m. Wednesday.

So what

Modern‘s (MRNA -8.58% ) Trying to avoid paying royalties on the lipid nanoparticle (LNP) technology on which its COVID vaccine is based has taken a different turn for the worse. A court of appeals ruling filed today upholds the previous ruling by the US Patent and Trademark Office not to invalidate Arbutus Biopharma’s patents covering PNA.

Image source: Getty Images.

LNPs are the tiny bubbles of fat that envelop vaccines and RNA-based therapies, allowing them to travel through the bloodstream to their destination. Licensing the technology has long been part of Arbutus Biopharma’s business plan. The company currently collects royalties from Alnylam (ALNY 0,23% ) on Onpattro sales at a rate of up to 2.33% of worldwide net sales.

Now what

Moderna’s claim that Arbutus Biopharma’s LNP technology was too obvious to be patentable is a tough line to swallow. Years ago, Moderna believed Arbutus’ LNP technology was important enough to authorize it for a handful of vaccine targets, none of which were COVID-19.

Figuring out exactly how much revenue Arbutus can expect from Moderna is going to be tricky. In 2018, Arbutus transformed its LNP technology into a separate company in which it still owns 16%, called Genevant.

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