Licensing and Alliances LIFE SCIENCES

Helping clients protect their innovations, forge strategic alliances and successfully navigate a complex, dynamic industry.

For companies in the life sciences sphere, licensing intellectual property and establishing strategic alliances are critical. WilmerHale's experienced licensing lawyers shepherd biotech, pharmaceutical, healthcare and medical device clients of all sizes through the complex transactions that make their businesses possible. Our attorneys excel at brokering material transfer agreements, manufacturing and supply agreements, confidentiality agreements, and distribution agreements. They also frequently represent biotech venture capital clients as they license patents—the foundation of their companies—from leading academic institutions across the United States and Europe. Backed by their professional experience and the deep well of knowledge possessed by the firm's patent, tax, antitrust and EU competition lawyers, our transactional attorneys are ready to handle even the most complex matters.


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Falber, Stuart M.

Stuart M. Falber

Co-Chair, Life Sciences Group

+1 617 526 6663 (t)

Juran, Belinda M.

Belinda M. Juran

Co-Chair, Technology Transactions and Licensing Practice Group

Co-Chair, Life Sciences Group

+1 617 526 6987 (t)

Der Marderosian, Lia

Lia Der Marderosian

Co-Chair, Corporate Practice Group

+1 617 526 6982 (t)


Brian A. Johnson

Vice Chair, Corporate Practice Group

Co-Chair, Capital Markets

+1 212 937 7206 (t)

Singer, Steven D.

Steven D. Singer

Chair, Transactional Department

+1 212 295 6307 (t)


Examples of our experience include:

  • advising Adimab in antibody discovery platform licenses with GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, Biogen Idec and Novo Nordisk;
  • representing Achillion in a hepatitis C treatment collaboration with Janssen Pharmaceuticals;
  • representing Agios in a collaboration agreement with Celgene to develop to discover, develop and commercialize immuno-oncology therapies based on Agios' innovative cellular metabolism research platform;
  • representing Nosocomial Vaccine Corporation in a collaboration with Astellas, Affinivax and University of Maryland to develop vaccines for infections that originate in hospitals;
  • representing Editas Medicine in a licensing agreement for its genome editing technology and in a cancer immunotherapy collaboration with Juno Therapeutics;
  • representing Epizyme in multiple collaboration transactions, including agreements with Roche Molecular Systems and Abbott Molecular for the development of molecular companion diagnostic tests to be used with Epizyme's EZH2 and DOT1L inhibitors, in the reacquisition of rights for cancer drug tazemetostat from Eisai, in the restructuring of a collaboration agreement with Celgene, and in a combination clinical study collaboration with Genentech;
  • representing Ikaria in an internal reorganization and the subsequent spin-out of its research and development business, just before to the sale of Ikaria's commercial business to Madison Dearborn Partners;
  • representing Lexicon in collaborations with Sanofi to develop and commercialize diabetes drug sotagliflozin;
  • representing Janus in a collaboration with Roche to develop TLR inhibitors; following the achievement of certain milestones, Roche will have the option to acquire Janus;
  • representing MacroGenics in a collaboration and licensing agreement with Janssen for MGD015, a preclinical bispecific molecule designed to redirect T cells, via their CD3 component, to eliminate cells that overexpress an undisclosed antigen in various hematological malignancies and solid tumors;
  • counseling Merrimack Pharmaceuticals in an exclusive license and collaboration agreement with Baxter International for the development and commercialization a development-stage drug for pancreatic cancer outside the United States and Taiwan;
  • representing Metamark in a collaboration agreement with Hologic that named Metamark the exclusive sales agent for a prostate cancer diagnostic test;
  • representing Ophthotech in an ex-US licensing and commercialization agreement with Novartis Pharmaceuticals related to the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration; and
  • representing Vedanta Biosciences in a licensing agreement with Janssen for microbiome pharmaceutical candidate.

For more information on our experience representing life sciences clients, visit our Technology Transactions and Licensing Practice.

Publications & News


March 20, 2018

WilmerHale Counsels Vividion in Strategic Research Collaboration with Celgene

Vividion Therapeutics, a biotechnology company using novel proteomics and chemistry platforms, has announced that it entered into a strategic research collaboration with Celgene Corporation and will receive $101 million in upfront and equity consideration.

March 16, 2018

WilmerHale Recognized for Outstanding International Lawyers and Practices in Chambers Global 2018

In the 2018 edition of Chambers Global, 33 WilmerHale lawyers were named among “The World's Leading Lawyers for Business."

March 14, 2018

WilmerHale Counsels Voyager Therapeutics in Global Strategic Collaboration with AbbVie

Voyager Therapeutics, Inc., a clinical-stage gene therapy company, and AbbVie, a global biopharmaceutical company, announced that they have entered into an exclusive strategic collaboration and option agreement to develop and commercialize vectorized antibodies directed against tau for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative diseases.

January 26, 2018

WilmerHale Represents Spark Therapeutics in Licensing and Supply Agreement With Novartis

Spark Therapeutics, a fully integrated gene therapy company dedicated to challenging the inevitability of genetic disease, announced it has entered into a licensing agreement with Novartis Pharmaceuticals to develop and commercialize investigational voretigene neparvovec outside the United States.

November 7, 2017

LMG Life Sciences 2017 Honors WilmerHale With Top Rankings

LMG Life Sciences has recognized WilmerHale among the nation's leading life sciences law firms in its 2017 rankings, citing the firm's Life Sciences Practice as “renowned for its range and multidisciplinary teams that counsel clients in technology, pharmaceutical and medical device companies as well as investment banks and venture capitalists.”

June 7, 2017

Selected 2017 Life Sciences Transactions

Recognized both globally and nationally for its leading life sciences practice, WilmerHale has more than four decades of experience representing biotechnology, pharmaceutical and medical device companies at all stages of growth, as well as venture capitalists and investment banks.

June 7, 2017

Selected 2017 Strategic Alliances, Joint Venture and Licensing Transactions

Our corporate, licensing, intellectual property and regulatory lawyers regularly handle a broad range of strategic alliance, joint venture, licensing,
collaboration, product development, outsourcing, manufacturing, distribution and similar agreements, including many significant deals that are helping to shape the future of science, technology and commerce.

May 26, 2017

WilmerHale Lawyers and Practices Recognized in 2017 Edition of Chambers USA

Chambers and Partners announced its rankings for the 2017 edition of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, with WilmerHale listed among the nation's best in 50 practice area categories. Chambers also ranked 86 WilmerHale lawyers as leaders in their respective fields.

May 17, 2017

WilmerHale Ranks Among Top Three Life Sciences Law Firms for Second Consecutive Year

The index—launched last year by Lake Whillans and Breaking Media (publisher of MedCity News and Above the Law)—identifies which law firms are the most active and relevant for life sciences companies.

May 2, 2017

WilmerHale Counsels Agios Pharmaceuticals in Exclusive License Agreement with Aurigene Discovery Technologies

Agios Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Aurigene Discovery Technologies Limited announced a global license agreement to research, develop and commercialize small molecule inhibitors of an undisclosed cancer metabolism target.