Open Orphan deal to generate ‘significant revenue’ for Venn Life Sciences

New contract with Japanese company Carna Bioscience follows close collaboration on drug development planning and pre-clinical activities

Dublin-listed pharmaceutical services company Open Orphan has signed a new contract with a Japanese group which it expects will generate "significant revenue" for subsidiary Venn Life Sciences over the next year.

Open Orphan, a European-focused, rare and orphan drug consulting services platform, said on Tuesday the contract with Carna Bioscience was for a first in human clinical pharmacology trials.

Open Orphan is the result of executive chairman Cathal Friel reversing his pharma services business of the same name into Dublin-listed drug clinical trials manager Venn Life Sciences last year.

The contract sees Breda, the Netherlands office of Venn, provide Carna with “a range of expertise related to early clinical development”.


Carna is a Japanese company specialising in kinase biology, developing treatments against cancer and immune disorders.

The new contract builds upon several years of existing work during which both parties closely collaborated on drug development planning and pre-clinical activities.

In recent weeks Venn’s chemistry, manufacturing and control (CMC), team which is also based in Breda, won a contract extension to continue a Dutch biotech on CMC until at least the end of the year.

“Both contracts are further evidence of Open Orphan’s strategy to secure long-term partnership contracts which deliver recurring revenues for the business by working in close collaboration with high quality customers,” the company said.

Mr Friel said: “This new contract with Carna further extends our relationship and demonstrates our ability to successfully service clients, resulting in repeat business.

“We look forward to carrying out this contract over the next year as we deliver on our strategy of generating recurring revenue through long term, service contracts.”

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter