Coulter Partners places Head of Manufacturing for Nanoform

Coulter Partners was very pleased to partner once again with innovative drug enabling nanotechnology company, Nanoform to secure the appointment of Dr David Rowe as its Head of Manufacturing. The new role will strengthen Nanoform’s manufacturing organization to efficiently deliver commercial APIs for global partners.

UKI2S and Innovate UK launch new £10m initiative to accelerate growth of early stage science and engineering companies

The £27m UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (UKI2S) and Innovate UK (IUK) have launched a joint initiative, the UKI2S Innovate Accelerator. With £10m of IUK funding to be used alongside direct equity investment by UKI2S, the new scheme is designed to boost some of the UK’s most exciting young companies.

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.

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.

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.

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 £2.0 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

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.

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

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 Today [13 May 2019], Medicines Discovery Catapult and the BioIndustry Association unveil their 2019 State of the Discovery Nation report, providing new insights into the UK’s growing medicines discovery industry.