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Drugs giant Sanofi Aventis has signed an agreement with Regeneron Pharmaceuticals to develop therapeutic antibodies using the US company’s technology.
Sanofi, which is the world’s third largest drugs manufacturer, will also increase its stake in the New York-based company to 19% from 4% at a cost of $312m (£151m) the company said in a statement.
As part of the research agreement, Sanofi will make an initial $85m (£41m) payment and will invest as much as $475m (£230m) over the next five years.
The firm will have an option to extend the research agreement for up to an additional three years.
The companies have announced that the first therapy to be developed will be a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.
All profits earned from the collaboration within the US will be split equally between the two firms, while outside the US, Sanofi will take a share which will range between 55% and 65%.
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