BERG Initiates Phase I/II Monotherapy Trial of BPM 31510-IV in Patients with Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM)

BERG LLC, a biopharmaceutical company uncovering health solutions through a data-driven, biological research approach, today announced that it has initiated a Phase I/II monotherapy clinical trial for its drug candidate BPM 31510-IV for the potential treatment of glioblastoma multiforme. The compound was guided in development by BERG's unique AI-based Interrogative Biology® platform that combines patient biology and artificial intelligence-based analytics to better understand the differences between healthy and disease environments.【阅读全文】

Two deals in two days means aesthetics is looking good

Both Allergan and Hologic have done billion-dollar deals for aesthetics companies this week, with the aim of capitalising on the fast-growing area of non-invasive beauty treatments. This is hardly a leftfield move for Botox's maker, Allergan, but most of Hologic’s business is in the areas of diagnostics, imaging and obstetrics.

It seems likely that, as payer pushback intensifies in the more traditional areas of medtech, Hologic believes that it might be easier to make money from procedures for which healthy people are prepared to pay out of pocket.【阅读全文】

Antibody-Drug Conjugates: Catalysts for Chemistry

Antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), also known as armed antibodies, are positioned to be a significant source of next-generation oncolytic therapies. There has been explosive growth in ADC R&D, especially since the development and subsequent marketing approval of Mylotarg (gemtuzumab ozogamicin; withdrawn from market in 2010), Adcetris (brentuximab vedotin), and Kadcyla (ado-trastuzumab emtansine). Estimates place the global ADC market at $10 billion annually after 2024 with seven to 10 new commercial ADC launches projected in the next decade.【阅读全文】

Stop Freaking Out About CRISPR! (Except For One Thing)

It’s been a huge two days for CRISPR, the biotechnology innovation that makes it far easier for scientists to edit DNA in living cells. Yesterday, a report from the National Academies of Science didn’t rule out eventually using the technology to rewrite the genes of babies shortly after conception. Today, a patent ruling gave key intellectual property to the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, causing shares in one biotechnology company involved in CRISPR work to shoot up and two others to crater.【阅读全文】

Plant-made virus shells could deliver drugs directly to cancer cells

Viruses are extremely efficient at targeting and delivering cargo to cells. In the journal ACS Nano, researchers report they have harnessed this well-honed ability -- minus the part that makes us sick -- to develop virus-like nanoparticles to deliver drugs straight to affected cells. In lab tests, they show that one such particle can be produced in plants and it ferries small molecules to cancer cells.【阅读全文】

Europe ready to embrace first copies of biotech cancer drugs

Treatment with two important cancer drugs is about to get much cheaper in Europe with a cut-price copy of Roche's (ROG.S) blood cancer drug Rituxan likely to hit the market imminently followed by a rival to its breast cancer medicine Herceptin.

As cancer drug prices spiral, the arrival of the first biosimilars or copies of biotech drugs, ones made inside living cells, puts European oncologists in the forefront of a treatment shift that could slash costs and expand patient access.【阅读全文】

Another Alzheimer's Drug Study Fails. This Time It's Merck's

Last night, Merck announced that it is stopping a clinical trial of a pill it is developing to treat Alzheimer's because there is "virtually no chance of finding a positive clinical effect." Investors were not surprised, given the track record of other such medicines.

The drug, verubecestat, is the latest in a long string of medicines to fail to have an effect on the disease. Over the past decade, experimental Alzheimer's drugs have repeatedly failed to slow the memory-destroying disease. Late last year, an antibody drug infused into patients' bodies, made by Eli Lilly, didn't have a significant effect on the disease. A medicine from Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson and Elan Pharmaceuticals, which was similar to the Lilly drug, had also previously also failed.【阅读全文】

Integra offers $1B+ bid for J&J’s neurosurgery biz

Integra LifeSciences has made a binding offer to acquire Johnson & Johnson’s Codman Neurosurgery business for about $1.05 billion in cash.

Codman, which reeled in about $370 million in revenue last year, is part of J&J’s DePuy Synthes group. If J&J accepts the bid, Integra will boost its neurosurgical offerings, getting its hands on surgical devices used to treat brain tumors, hydrocephalus (or the buildup of fluid in the brain) and other neurological disorders.【阅读全文】

Versant’s Jecure Therapeutics debuts with a focus on NASH, fibrosis

VC Versant has pumped $20 million on its own into its newly launched preclinical liver disease upstart Jecure, with its founders coming out from a former Versant biotech.

This founding team includes CEO Jeffrey Stafford, Ph.D., and CSO James Veal, Ph.D., both of whom were execs at Quanticel Pharmaceuticals, an oncology biotech founded by Versant and acquired by Celgene two years ago.【阅读全文】

Would Pfizer, Roche or Novartis megamerge with BMS? Rumors say they're crunching numbers now

Last month, a couple of analysts addressed Bristol-Myers Squibb as a takeover target for some rival pharma giant. The gist? The combination of disappointments on its cancer blockbuster Opdivo plus a solid product line-up could well put a bullseye on the company—and its “very logical, very rational” management team wouldn’t dismiss offers out of hand.

Now, rumors are surfacing that Swiss-based drugmakers Roche and Novartis, leaders in the cancer field, and Pfizer are actively looking at a buyout. StreetInsider, which cited anonymous sources in reporting the talk, also said that Gilead Sciences—which, as executives recently admitted, needs some significant M&A to grow—might be considering the idea.【阅读全文】