On this page, we've listed key steps on the journey that has led Regeneron to where the company is today.
Regeneron is founded in New York City
Leonard S. Schleifer, M.D., Ph.D., a young neurologist and assistant professor at Cornell University Medical College, establishes the company based on the principle that dedication to strong science would lead to important new medicines. His two co-founders are nationally-known scientists Drs. Alfred Gilman, Len's Ph.D. thesis advisor at the University of Virginia, and Dr. Eric Shooter. Drs. Gilman and Shooter recruit other leading scientists to join the company’s scientific advisory board to help guide the young company. Two of those scientists, Dr. Joseph Goldstein and Dr. Michael Brown, shared a Nobel Prize in 1985, and Dr. Gilman would go on to win a Nobel in 1994. The company is named Regeneron because of the intention to focus on the use of gene technology to regenerate neurons. The first $1 million is raised from Merrill Lynch Venture Capital, Inc.
George Yancopoulos joins Company as it opens labs in Tarrytown, NY; Company signs first corporate collaboration
George D. Yancopoulos, M.D., Ph.D., a highly regarded young molecular immunologist at Columbia University, joins Len as they open the laboratory in about 10,000 sq. ft. of space in Westchester County. Regeneron begins research on neurotrophic factors (proteins that promote nerve growth) that may be relevant to diseases of the brain and central nervous system. Shortly thereafter, Regeneron pens its first collaboration, with Japan’s Sumitomo Chemical.
Regeneron publishes first paper in Science, on cloning a novel neurotrophic factor, which becomes the most highly cited neurobiology paper of the year
The Company quickly established itself as one of the top research groups in the industry, as Yancopoulos and his team publish a featured article in Science magazine on the cloning of a novel neurotrophic factor (Maisonpierre et al., 1990).
Company collaborates with Amgen to develop neurotrophic factors brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) & neurotrophin-3 (NT-3)
Regeneron launches an “Orphan Receptor” Program, which lays foundation for future Traps and Growth Factor efforts
Efforts begin with cloning of receptors for neurotrophic factors (e.g. Davis et al., 1991; Squinto et al., 1991; Glass et al., 1992) and lead to examples in which orphan receptors are used to identify their unknown growth factor partners (Davis et al., 1994; Stitt et al., 1995; Davis et al., 1996; Glass et al., 1996; Maisonpierre et al., 1997; Shrivastava et al., 1997; Valenzuela et al., 1999). Neil Stahl, Aris Economides, Yancopoulos and their colleagues take the lessons they learn from these efforts to begin to devise the Traps approach that leads to the IL-1 Trap and the VEGF Trap.
Regeneron goes public on the Nasdaq Stock Market
On the heels of the Amgen collaboration and riding a wave of interest in biotechnology companies, Regeneron stock begins trading under the symbol REGN. The IPO raises $91.6 million for Regeneron.
First Regeneron investigational drug, ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF), begins clinical development in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease
Company acquires a manufacturing facility in Rensselaer, NY; second neurotrophic factor enters clinical development
Believing in the importance of developing in-house manufacturing capabilities, Regeneron acquires a facility near Albany, NY from a pharmaceutical company and retrofits it to make drug material for clinical trials.
P. Roy Vagelos, M.D., becomes Chairman of the Board
After the renowned Chairman and CEO of Merck & Co. retires, Len recruits him to be the chairman of the Regeneron board, a position Dr. Vagelos has held since that time. Dr. Vagelos, who previously had been the head of Merck's R&D, encouraged Regeneron to focus its research on disease settings where clinical benefit could be evaluated more quickly.
Company enters into a collaboration with Procter & Gamble, during which VEGF Trap efforts are initiated
Phase 3 trial in ALS with neurotrophic factor
Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) does not achieve its primary endpoint; 2nd collaboration signed with Procter & Gamble
AXOKINE (CNTF) neurotrophic factor starts clinical development for treatment of obesity
ARCALYST® (rilonacept) (IL-1 Trap) begins clinical development
VEGF Trap begins clinical development in oncology
AXOKINE Phase 3 trial does not achieve its primary endpoint
Regeneron publishes the first paper on VelociGene®, introducing the world to its Veloci technologies
To watch a video on Veloci technologies, click here.
The Company begins to lay groundwork for major changes in its technology foundation, as Yancopoulos, David Valenzuela and their team publish a featured article in Nature Biotechnology magazine (Valenzuela et al., 1990) on a new approach to high-throughput and mega-sized genetic engineering of the mouse genome. This so-called “VelociGene® ” technology is used to make the “VelocImmune® ” mouse, which is a mouse with a genetically humanized immune system that greatly improves the process of making fully human monoclonal antibodies
Regeneron initiates a collaboration with Aventis (which the following year merges with Sanofi-Synthélabo to form sanofi-aventis) to develop and commercialize VEGF Trap
VEGF Trap-Eye begins clinical development for neovascular wet age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD).
Collaboration begins with Bayer Healthcare to develop and commercialize VEGF Trap-Eye outside the U.S.
First Regeneron fully-human antibody, targeting IL-6R, enters clinical development in inflammatory disease
Regeneron enters collaboration with sanofi-aventis to discover, develop, and commercialize fully human antibodies using the Regeneron VelocImmune® technology platform
FDA approves ARCALYST® (rilonacept) for the treatment of a rare genetic disease
Antibody collaboration with sanofi-aventis is expanded and extended; 1,000th employee hired; company moves into new buildings on its Tarrytown campus
Regeneron hires several hundred more employees, primarily to support the expanded antibody collaboration with Sanofi; positive Phase 3 clinical results are announced for VEGF Trap-Eye in wet AMD; 8th antibody enters clinical development
Positive Phase 3 clinical results are announced for VEGF Trap-Eye in wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD), central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO) and diabetic macular edema (DME)
Astellas to pay $295 million to extend license of Regeneron's VelocImmune® antibody technology through 2023
The IL-6R antibody, now called sarilumab, enters Phase 3 development, and positive Phase 2 data are announced for the REGN727 (PCSK9) program. By year end, Regeneron employs approximately 1,700 full time employees
Regeneron files for regulatory approval of EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection in February, receives FDA approval in November, and immediately makes the drug available in the U.S.
Regeneron ranked by Science Magazine as the #2 Employer in the Global Biopharmaceutical Industry
Regeneron President and CEO Leonard S. Schleifer named Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2011 New York Award Winner
Net sales of EYLEA® (aflibercept) are $124 million in the first quarter, $194 million in the second quarter, and $224 million in the third quarter of 2012
Regeneron is voted the world's #1 Biopharmaceutical Employer in Science Magazine survey and Biotech Company of the Year by Scrip Intelligence
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection approved for the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration in Europe, Japan and Australia
Phase 2 data for REGN727, a potentially first-in-class antibody to PCSK9, a novel target for LDL cholesterol reduction, are published in leading journals, and the REGN727 program enters Phase 3 development
FDA approves EYLEA® (aflibercept) in a 2nd indication, macular edema following central retinal vein occlusion
U.S. FDA approves ZALTRAP® (ziv-aflibercept) after priority review for previously treated metastatic colorectal cancer
Sanofi and Regeneron announce collaboration with American College of Cardiology for PCSK9 inhibitor clinical program
Regeneron opens European Headquarters in Dublin, Ireland
Sanofi and Regeneron's dupilumab named "Clinical Advance of the Year" by Scrip Intelligence;
Regeneron's Chief Executive Officer and Chief Scientific Officer named "Management Team of the Year" by Scrip Intelligence
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection approved for the treatment of macular edema following central retinal vein occlusion in Japan
Regeneron named Top Employer in the Global Biopharmaceutical Industry by Science Magazine for the second year in a row
Sanofi and Regeneron report positive top-line results with alirocumab from first Phase 3 study of a PCSK9 inhibitor for LDL cholesterol reduction
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection approved in Europe for the treatment of visual impairment due to macular edema secondary to central retinal vein occlusion
Regeneron announces first recipients of annual "Regeneron Prize for Creative Innovation"
ZALTRAP® (ziv-aflibercept) approved in the EU for patients with previously treated metastatic colorectal cancer
Have you been counted? Regeneron and Sanofi US join forces with leading cardiovascular organizations to raise awareness of cholesterol
Regeneron and Sanofi announce that dupilumab has received FDA breakthrough therapy designation in atopic dermatitis
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection receives approval for the treatment of diabetic macular edema (DME) in US, EU and Japan
Regeneron ranked #1 Biopharmaceutical Employer by Science Magazine for third consecutive year
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection receives FDA approval for macular edema following retinal vein occlusion (RVO)
Regeneron announces approval of EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection for the treatment of patients with myopic choroidal neovascularization (CNV) in Japan
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection receives FDA breakthrough therapy designation for diabetic retinopathy in patients with diabetic macular edema
Regeneron and Sanofi report positive top-line results from nine Phase 3 trials of alirocumab in people with hypercholesterolemia
Regeneron and Avalanche Biotechnologies announce collaboration to develop next-generation gene therapy products in ophthalmology
Regeneron announces initiative for STEM education in Hudson Valley
Regeneron launches new human genetics initiative
Regeneron and Sanofi launch major new immuno-oncology collaboration
Regeneron and Sanofi announce FDA approval of PRALUENT® (alirocumab) Injection, the first PCSK9 inhibitor in the U.S., for the treatment of high LDL cholesterol in adult patients
Regeneron rapid response platform for emerging infectious diseases described in proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences publication
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection receives approval in Japan for the treatment of retinal vein occlusion
FDA Advisory Committee recommends approval of Regeneron and Sanofi's PRALUENT® (alirocumab) Injection for patients with hypercholesterolemia
Regeneron and Sanofi announce positive topline results from Phase 3 studies with sarilumab in patients with rheumatoid arthritis
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection receives FDA approval for the treatment of diabetic retinopathy in patients with diabetic macular edema (DME)
EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection receives EU approval for the treatment of visual impairment due to macular edema secondary to retinal vein occlusion
NIH-sponsored comparative effectiveness trial in diabetic macular edema shows EYLEA® (aflibercept) Injection demonstrated significantly greater gains in visual acuity than both bevacizumab and ranibizumab