Press Releases

BIA | New report unveils a thriving service and supply sector for UK medicines discovery

Driving innovation into state-of-the-art technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and Complex Cell Models is key to maintaining the UK’s global competitiveness

Changes to SME R&D tax credit scheme could harm a thriving sector says BIA

The BioIndustry Association (BIA) is calling for the Government to think again on proposals which could see harmful changes to the way that SMEs are supported through R&D tax credits.

BIA welcomes legal confirmation that discoveries made through “routine” research can be patentable in ICOS vs Actavis ruling

In a ruling handed down today (27 March) by the UK Supreme Court, Lord Hodge has confirmed that discoveries made through well-established or routine research protocols can be inventive and rewarded with a patent

Investors maintain confidence in UK biotech at start of 2019

New figures published today (Monday 25 March 2019) by the UK BioIndustry Association (BIA) and Informa Pharma Intelligence shows a strong start to 2019 for venture capital investment in UK biotech.

 

Member News

LifeArc monetises Keytruda® (pembrolizumab) royalty interests to fund further research and investment

LifeArc, a UK-based medical research charity, has received US$1.297 billion from CPPIB Credit Europe S.à r.l. - a wholly owned subsidiary of Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) - for a portion of its royalty interest in Keytruda®* (pembrolizumab), MSD’s anti-PD-1 therapy. LifeArc secured rights to royalties from pembrolizumab as a result of the charity’s 2007 collaboration to humanise the antibody-based therapy now marketed by MSD.

Lonza chooses Synpromics’ novel inducible promoter platform to manufacture biopharmaceuticals

Synpromics Ltd, the leader in gene control, and Lonza Pharma & Biotech announce a partnership for the commercialisation of a number of inducible promoters to improve the manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals. The commercial agreement with Lonza follows the award of an Innovate UK grant to Synpromics announced on 23 April 2018. Lonza and Synpromics worked together to develop and test these innovative promoters in Lonza’s industry-leading GS Xceed® Expression System.

Locate Bio receives additional ÂŁ2.0 million investment from Mercia to expand gene and cell therapy pipeline

Locate Bio Ltd has received an additional £2.0 million of investment from Mercia Technologies PLC and its third party fund, the Midlands Engine Investment Fund to expand the application of its technologies, including its promising gene therapy technology IntraStem™, into new high value therapy areas to both broaden its in-house development pipeline and provide additional partnering opportunities.

F-star expedites its transition to a wholly-owned portfolio strategy

• Reconfigured collaboration represents major advancement in F-star’s pivot to a wholly-owned portfolio strategy • F-star retains lead clinical asset, first-in-class bispecific antibody, FS118 • FS118 Phase 1 trial study continues according to F-star protocol • Merck exercises option for one discovery stage programme and retains option for second discovery programme from original collaboration

 

BIA blog

CEO Update | Monday 20 May 2019

UK life science certainly feels more Champions League Final (Spurs v Liverpool) than Eurovision (UK last place) this week. First, LifeArc has announced that it has sold most of its royalty interest in the blockbuster drug Keytruda for $1.3bn (£1.02bn) and plans to invest the windfall in developing new treatments. The sale was made to the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, one of the world’s largest retirement funds. We were thrilled that recently-appointed LifeArc CEO, Melanie Lee, was the recipient of our lifetime achievement award at the BIA Gala Dinner in January – it’s fantastic to see her leading the way on LifeArc’s monetization process. This is great news for the UK life sciences ecosystem, research and patients. You can read more about this in the Financial Times.

Video of the week | The Guardian | CrisprCas9 explained

Professor Jennifer Doudna, one the pioneers of Crispr-Cas9 gene editing explains how this important discovery enables precise changes to our DNA , which can be used to correct mutations that cause genetic disease and completely eradicate it from a germline. Doudna raises the 4 key issues of debate around this revolutionary discovery and suggests what will have the most immediate impact.

CEO Update | Monday 13 May 2019

Today we’ve launched the 2019 State of the Discovery Nation report in conjunction with the Medicines Discovery Catapult. It provides insights into the UK’s growing medicines discovery industry, revealing a thriving service and supply sector for the UK in addition to its R&D biotechs. Research for the report found that service and supply companies account for 80% of SMEs in UK medicines discovery, and 90% of employment.

Action Medical Research | Born with a rare disease

Mark and Amanda's son Joshua was born with the rare disease Jeune syndrome. Joshua is now a very happy and lively little two-year-old who, "is continuing to prove everyone wrong," says his proud dad Mark. A baby born with Jeune syndrome will have a tiny bell-shaped ribcage as well as short arms and legs. Sadly they can face many other complications too. Those who survive face the prospect of long-term assisted ventilation and complicated surgeries. Action Medical Research, BIA Charity of the Year 2019, is funding vital research into this rare, hereditary condition with no cure. For more information on the BIA's work on rare diseases, take a look at our Rare Disease Industry Group. Are you interested in joining us as Charity of the Year for 2020?

 

Our publications

Please find a selection of featured BIA publications below. To see our full publications library, click here

Influencing and shaping our sector, BIA update: January - April 2018

This quarterly update gives an overview of key policy developments and the BIA’s continued engagement with policymakers, regulatory authorities and wider stakeholders on behalf of the UK life sciences industry, from January to April 2018.

Biotech Financing Update: December 2017 to February 2018

The BIA/Informa Biotech Financing Update: December 2017-February 2018 released today shows that venture capital financing and follow on financing on the public markets are off to a solid start in 2018.

Pipeline Progressing: The UK's Global Bioscience Cluster in 2017

A new report released by the BioIndustry Association (BIA) and Informa Pharma Intelligence reveals that the UK has the strongest clinical and preclinical pipeline in Europe.

BIA Best practice guide for communicating R&D

Ensuring investors and the wider public are well informed and confident about bioscience is crucial to the success of individual companies and the sector as a whole. To support the sector to maintain high standards in communications about R&D progress, the BIA has produced a best practice guide for bioscience companies with a supporting library of resources.