* HKUST to get royalty on future drug sales
* Geron to fund development of drug candidates
July 15 Stem cell research company Geron Corp
(GERN.O) said it ended its joint venture with Hong Kong
University of Science and Technology (HKUST) and it will be
responsible for further development and funding of its HIV and
In 2005, Geron and HKUST created the joint venture, TA
Therapeutics Ltd, to develop controlled activation of
telomerase, an enzyme that helps prevent the fraying of
chromosomes that underlies aging and cancer.
Controlled activation of the enzyme may restore the
regenerative and functional capacity of cells in various organ
systems impacted by injury or chronic disease.
Under the new agreement, the telomerase activator program
will continue as an internal Geron program and all intellectual
property of TA Therapeutics has been assigned to Geron, the
Geron said HKUST will be eligible to receive a royalty on
future sales of the drugs. Geron is currently testing its HIV
and lung drug candidates in animals.
Shares of the company closed at $4.91 Wednesday on Nasdaq.
(Reporting by Anand Basu in Bangalore; Editing by Vinu