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Fireside Chat with Ken Drazan, MD, Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation

Ken Drazan, MD

Day one of the BIO Investor Forum featured a Fireside Chat with Ken Drazan, MD, who serves as the head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation in California. The conversation was moderated by Deepa R. Pakianathan, PhD, a general partner for Delphi Ventures who leads the firm’s biotechnology investment activities. Ken Drazan has a unique viewpoint which results from having experience with both the biopharma start-up world as well as in the investment community. This background Read More >

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T-Cell Therapies: Best Bets in Pushing Down the Cost Curve and Prioritizing Cancer Targets

BIO Investor Forum

New approaches in cancer immunology are achieving promising early-stage results through novel techniques for arming the body’s own t-cells to have greater impact on reducing tumors and preventing the spread of disease. CAR-T methods that extract, reengineer, and reintroduce a given patient’s t-cells provide highly personalized therapy but may be difficult to scale up. The interleukin enhancement approach motivates existing t-cells to be more effective and may be easier to deliver but have less pervasive Read More >

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Gates Foundation and Grand Challenge Partners Announce New Investments in Breakthrough Science

Vaccination

At an event in Seattle today, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and a group of international partners announced three new initiatives aimed at encouraging breakthroughs in science. The event celebrates a decade of progress since the Gates Foundation’s launch of the initial Grand Challenges in Global Health initiative, which was created to catalyze scientific and technological innovation to achieve major breakthroughs in global health. The three new initiatives include: • All Children Thriving – Read More >

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New PhRMA report: Nearly 800 Cancer Medicines in Development

vaccines

A new report from the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) shows that biopharma companies are currently developing nearly 800 new medicines and vaccines for cancer. “In recent decades, we have seen great progress in developing effective cancer treatments that help extend lives, improve quality of life and increase productivity,” said PhRMA President and CEO John J. Castellani. “Continued research has expanded our knowledge of how cancer develops and how to target medicines for Read More >

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Washington Post: Why Extremely Expensive Drugs Are Often Worth the Cost

Breast Cancer

Jason Millman highlights a new study published in Health Affairs showing specialty drugs often provide ‘substantially much higher health benefits than the traditional drugs.’ “Our study suggests that although specialty drugs often have higher costs than traditional drugs, they also tend to confer greater benefits and hence may still offer reasonable value for money,” wrote the researchers at the Boston-based Center for Value and Risk in Health. The study authors judged the drugs’ performance by Read More >

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