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Amended Agreement to Benefit Two Biotech Firms
Research Report

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In the new arrangement between Beam Therapeutics Inc. and Verve Therapeutics Inc. each of the companies grants the other an exclusive license, one to a base editing target, the other to a gene delivery technology, noted a Wedbush report.

Beam Therapeutics Inc. (BEAM:NASDAQ) and Verve Therapeutics Inc. (VERV:NASDAQ) amended their existing agreement signed in April 2019 in two significant ways, reported Wedbush analyst David Nierengarten in a July 7 research note.

One, the amendment calls for Beam to grant Verve the exclusive license to a cardiovascular base editing target, and Verve will develop and commercialize a therapeutic against it. Beam may opt-in to an agreement for a 35%/65% profit share split after the final patient is dosed in the related Phase 1 trial.

"Should Beam not opt-in, it will be eligible to receive milestones and royalties under the same terms provided for the other collaboration products in the original agreement," Nierengarten explained. The economic split for those is 50%/50%.

Beam is a Massachusetts-headquartered biotech company that is developing precision genetic medicines through base editing. Verve is developing gene-editing medicines to treat cardiovascular disease.

Two, Beam gained an exclusive license from Verve for its GaINAc-lipid nanoparticle-mediated (LNP) delivery technology, which, Nierengarten noted, Beam could capitalize on for some of its own in vivo liver programs.

"Coming after Beam's acquisition of Guide Therapeutics last year, we believe that Beam continues its push into LNP delivery technologies," he added.

Nierengarten also pointed out that Verve generated data from animal testing that indicate base editing has a place in vivo applications.

Source: Beam Therapeutics.

"We continue to believe that Beam has additional levers of upside that could continue to drive the company's long-term value, including these collaborations around non-core therapeutic areas to maximize their platform's economic potential," he added.

As for Beam's finances, the biotech has about $1.2 billion in cash, enough, Nierengarten noted, to get it to the point of generating initial patient data regarding its core programs, and potential stock catalysts.

These programs include BEAM-101, activating fetal protein for sickle cell disease and beta-thalassemia; BEAM-102, correcting the HbS sickle mutation for sickle cell disease; and BEAM-201, silencing the CD7 chimeric antigen receptor T-cells in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia and CD7-positive acute myelogenous leukemia.

Wedbush has an Outperform rating and a $100 per share price target on Beam Therapeutics. Its current share price is around $53.05.

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Disclosures for Wedbush, Beam Therapeutics, July 7, 2022

Analyst Certification: We, David Nierengarten and Dennis Pak, certify that the views expressed in this report accurately reflect our personal opinions and that we have not and will not, directly or indirectly, receive compensation or other payments in connection with our specific recommendations or views contained in this report.

Company Specific Disclosures:
1. WS makes a market in the securities of Beam Therapeutics.

3. WS co-managed a public offering of securities for Beam Therapeutics within the last 12 months.

4. WS has received compensation for investment banking services from Beam Therapeutics within the last 12 months.

5. WS provided Beam Therapeutics with investment banking services within the last 12 months. 

Other Disclosures: The information herein is based on sources that we consider reliable, but its accuracy is not guaranteed. The information contained herein is not a representation by this corporation, nor is any recommendation made herein based on any privileged information. This information is not intended to be nor should it be relied upon as a complete record or analysis: neither is it an offer nor a solicitation of an offer to sell or buy any security mentioned herein. This firm, Wedbush Securities, its officers, employees, and members of their families, or any one or more of them, and its discretionary and advisory accounts, may have a position in any security discussed herein or in related securities and may make, from time to time, purchases or sales thereof in the open market or otherwise.

The information and expressions of opinion contained herein are subject to change without further notice. The herein mentioned securities may be sold to or bought from customers on a principal basis by this firm. Additional information with respect to the information contained herein may be obtained upon request.

Wedbush Securities does and seeks to do business with companies covered in its research reports. Thus, investors should be aware that the firm may have a conflict of interest that could affect the objectivity of this report. Investors should consider this report as only a single factor in making their investment decision. Please see pages 3–7 of this report for analyst certification and important disclosure information.

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