Martek, Merck enter agreementMartek Biosciences Corp. of...

BUSINESS DIGEST

September 13, 1994

Martek, Merck enter agreement

Martek Biosciences Corp. of Columbia said yesterday that it signed an agreement with drug giant Merck & Co. Inc. to allow Merck to use Martek's "library" of microalgae in a one-year search for organisms that can be made into new drugs.

The deal has an initial value "in the low six figures," Martek spokeswoman Mona Hoff said.

Its long-term value will depend on payments that Merck would make at later stages of research on specific drugs, and in royalties on those drugs that reach the market.

Ms. Hoff said there were about 100,000 species of microalgae, and Martek has only identified about 1,600 well enough to know their individual properties.

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