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 business 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 foundations of their companies—from leading academic institutions across the United States and Europe. Backed not only by their own experience but also 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 multifaceted matters.

Barrett, Steven D.

Steven D. Barrett


+1 617 526 6238 (t)

Braun, Martin

Dr. Martin Braun


+49 69 27 10 78 207 (t)

Finkel, Robert M.

Robert M. Finkel


+1 212 295 6555 (t)

Gokhale, Ashwin

Ashwin Gokhale


+1 650 858 6071 (t)

Johnson, Jeffrey P.

Jeffrey P. Johnson


+1 617 526 6394 (t)

Juran, Belinda M.

Belinda M. Juran


+1 617 526 6987 (t)

Kipnis, Jason

Jason D. Kipnis


+1 650 600 5036 (t)

Singer, Steven D.

Steven D. Singer


+1 212 295 6307 (t)

Soiffer, Ariel

Ariel Soiffer


+1 617 526 6089 (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.

Publications & News


March 21, 2018

Selected 2018 M&A Transactions

In 2017, we advised clients on more than 75 M&A transactions with an aggregate value of approximately $60 billion, providing guidance in areas including corporate, securities, antitrust and tax. Since 2007, we have participated in more than 1,000 mergers and acquisitions with a total value in excess of $400 billion, ranging from sales of VC-backed companies to multibillion-dollar global mergers.

March 21, 2018

Selected 2018 Venture Financings As Company Counsel

In 2017, we served as counsel in more than 250 venture financings raising over $4.5 billion, including some of the largest and most prominent deals of the year. Since 2007, we have handled more than 2,800 venture financings with total proceeds in excess of $35 billion.

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 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.

December 22, 2017

Technical and Scientific Experience

Our ability to provide superior legal representation to technology companies is greatly enhanced by the academic and industry experience of our lawyers in a wide variety of technical and scientific fields.    

December 15, 2017

WilmerHale Reps Decibel Therapeutics in Strategic Collaboration With Regeneron

On November 29, 2017, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Decibel Therapeutics, Inc. announced a collaboration to discover and develop new potential therapeutics to protect, repair and restore hearing.

December 5, 2017

Astellas Acquires Mitobridge Under Existing Collaboration

Astellas Pharma Inc. and Mitobridge, Inc. announced that Astellas has exercised its exclusive option right to acquire Mitobridge under the amended terms of the October 2013 partnership agreement.

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.”

October 26, 2017

WilmerHale Reps MacroGenics in Global Collaboration and Licensing Agreement With Incyte

MacroGenics, Inc. and Incyte Corporation announced that they have entered into an exclusive global collaboration and license agreement for MacroGenics' MGA012, an investigational monoclonal antibody that inhibits programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1).