Key M&As set a positive tone for JPM 2019, as the sector shrugged off US stock market setbacks at the end of 2018. First out of the blocks were GSK taking Tesaro in a £3.8bn deal (announced before the conference) and since ringing in the new year we’ve seen Takeda complete their acquisition of Shire, Bristol-Myers Squibb acquire Celgene in a record breaking £70bn deal and Eli Lilly purchase Loxo Oncology for £6.24bn. These large pharma deals show desire for a strategic pipeline and prove the inherent value of biotech as a driver of innovation. More than half of new drugs registered in the coming years are expected to be made by small companies which large players may then look to add to their portfolio. The outlook for M&As looks strong and venture are keen to put money to work knowing the
Happy New Year everyone. I write this on my way to San Francisco to start the year at the JP Morgan conference. This look ahead to 2019 summarises my key themes for the year and closes with a quick summary of UK news that came out over the holiday period.
What is the #FutureofImmunology in the UK? Watch to see Ailsa Bosworth MBE (Founder and CEO of the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society), Peter Openshaw (President of the British Society for Immunology) and Lisa Olsen (Vice President, R&D, Head of Abbvie Bioresearch Centre) explain why the future is bright #AdvancingTogether
Discovery Park - and some of the businesses driving its success - will use one of the UK’s leading science events to showcase why it remains the perfect location for science companies looking to grow and collaborate. It will be attending Genesis 2018 with several of its life sciences tenants, showcasing their activities and discussing its plans for the future development of the Park.
Today the government announced funding for a new Vaccines Manufacturing Innovation Centre to be built in Oxford. Led by the Jenner Institute, a partnership between the University of Oxford and the Pirbright Institute, the new centre has been awarded funding by UK Research and Innovation of £66 million through the UK government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) Medicines Manufacturing challenge. Additional funding of £10 million will come from commercial and other partners, including Janssen Vaccines & Prevention B.V. and Merck Sharp and Dohme. The centre will be further supported by expertise and training from GE Healthcare. The core research teams will be drawn from academia and industry and will include significant new contributions from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical
CGT Catapult hosted a workshop with the BIA and the ABPI to tackle key challenges in advanced therapy adoption by the NHS. The workshop bought together expert stakeholders to explore how the Advanced Therapy Treatment Centre network can drive adoption of cell and gene therapies.
It was fantastic to see Greg Winter, serial entrepreneur and founder of BIA member Bicycle Therapeutics jointly awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry. His ground-breaking work humanising antibodies led to the production of Humira, the best selling prescription drug last year. The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded jointly to James P. Allison and Tasuku Honjo for their discovery of cancer therapy by inhibition of negative immune regulation. The two breakthroughs together provide the scientific underpinning for the fantastic work our sector has done to translate this science into practical therapies for patients.
According to Cancer Research U.K., there were 359,960 new cases of cancer diagnosed in 2015, which breaks down to someone being diagnosed nearly every two minutes. These statistics are unsettling and, without a foolproof cure for all cancers, new treatments are being developed every single day.