Latest Commentary

It takes a planet: Woodford's investment strategy may help change the global biotech scene

What makes Woodford such a potent figure is the example he sets in backing global drug development, where even small companies knit together scientific, administrative and support functions from an international cast of players.

Polaris adds $450M to this year's blockbuster bonanza of new biotech funds

Polaris Partners, an ambitious venture investor that's been behind a legion of cutting-edge biotech startups, has come up with $450 million for its latest fund. The cash tops the $400 million mark that the VC had outlined in an SEC filing last summer, signaling another success for the year's blossoming class of new biotech venture funds.

Is the CF Foundation's $3.3B royalty windfall good or bad for patients?

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation announced today that it had cashed in its royalty stream from Vertex Pharmaceuticals' breakthrough CF drugs it backed for a $3.3 billion windfall. But where the foundation trumpeted the blockbuster deal with Royalty Pharma as a prelude to more investments into next-gen drugs, the New York Times' Andrew Pollack had no trouble finding a critic eager to lambaste the foundation for the ultimate sin: putting profits ahead of patients.

Average cost of drug R&D? Try $2.9B on for size

The Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development created the industry standard on R&D budgets when it pegged average R&D costs at close to $1 billion for each new drug. Today, Tufts researchers updated their figures and boosted the total to $2.9 billion.

Sanofi CEO Chris Viehbacher gets the boot: What happens next in R&D?

Chris Viehbacher took the helm of Sanofi with one clear message about the future: R&D at the Big Pharma had to undergo a radical restructuring. The lost decade in drug development following 2000 proved that Sanofi and others had to mend their ways, he said, forcing the company to reach outside the organization for innovation and shed the dead wood that had accumulated in its research ops.

Meet some of the revolutionaries in biotech R&D

It's become a matter of commonly accepted faith in the biopharma biz that it takes more than $1 billion and 10 years to develop a new drug. Industry associations like to cite that factoid as a reason for the big prices we're seeing on new therapies, often while prodding the FDA for faster action. 

Just how big is the biosimilars business going to be in 5 years?

Thomson Reuters BioWorld took a deep dive into the subject and surfaced today with a detailed report outlining a bustling new global business with roughly 700 so-called follow-ons put in the clinic by 245 companies and institutions. Looking ahead to 2020, analysts say, you can anticipate that biosimilars will account for about $25 billion out of $100 billion in sales for off-patent biologics.

UPDATED: Oral low-T drugs in the pipeline face a showdown with the FDA

An expert panel assembled by the FDA has taken a big step toward blunting the fast-growing market for low-testosterone drugs, raising a thorny issue not just for the companies that sell such remedies, but also for two biotechs trying to gain approvals for new ones.

The 2014 Fierce 15 is about to debut in Boston

The 12th annual Fierce 15 report will be rolling out at the BioPharm America meeting in Boston on Monday just before we go live with the report on the website.

Biotech R&D is changing. Don't get left behind

Over the last few years we've seen some big changes in the way some drugs are developed. What better time to host a new FierceBiotech executive panel discussion on current trends in late-stage development?