Genetic Therapy Inc. said it has licensed the gene forinterleukin-1beta (IL-1B) from Cistron Biotechnology Inc. foruse in genetic therapies for cancer.

Genetic Therapy (NASDAQ: GTII) will make undisclosed up-front and royalty payments. The license gives GTII worldwideexclusive use of the gene for genetic therapies to treat cancer,according to Marc Schneebaum, GTII's chief financial officer. Itdoes not cover use of the gene for other applications.

The cytokine is involved in regulating immune responses. Thetechnology was developed by the New England Medical CenterHospitals Inc., Tufts University, the Massachusetts Institute ofTechnology and Wellesley College. Cistron (NASDAQ:CIST) ofPine Brook, N.J., has acquired exclusive licenses to thetechnology, according to Schneebaum.

GTII is supplying vector systems containing cytokine genes toseveral gene therapy trials for the treatment of cancer. -- SteveUsdin

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