News

Venrock unveils a $450M new fund with eyes on biotech

Well-heeled venture capital firm Venrock has pieced together a 7th fund, banking $450 million in new investments as it sets out to grow its portfolio of promising startups.

FDA panel green-lights Baxter and Halozyme's drug on a second pass

A group of FDA advisers has given its blessing to a previously rejected immunodeficiency treatment from Baxter and Halozyme Therapeutics, setting the stage for an approval after years of delay.

Almirall seeks dermatology deals, Euro biotech IPOs fall short, Cellectis increases CAR-T focus

In this week's EuroBiotech Report, the last week of July was a massive one for European biotech IPOs, with BioBlast Pharma, Innocoll, Macrocure, Mapi Pharma and VBL Therapeutics all heading to the Nasdaq. All of the companies struggled though. And more.

Boehringer plays catch-up in COPD with its latest FDA approval

The FDA approved Boehringer Ingelheim's COPD treatment Striverdi Respimat, a once-a-day inhaler the German drugmaker hopes can contend in a crowded respiratory market.

Cold Genesys rakes in $13.6M for its cancer-fighting virus

California biotech Cold Genesys has wrapped up a $13.6 million A round to support its work on cancer treatment that promises to infect tumor cells and convince the immune system to join the fight.

Synthetic biology play Gen9 raises $25M for DNA synthesis

The synthetic biology company Gen9 has raised $25 million in equity financing for its work on a next-gen gene synthesis platform technology. Cited by The Scientist back in 2012 as the number 1...

Muscular dystrophy biotechs buoyed by FDA's encouragement on accelerated OKs

The FDA's Janet Woodcock may be Sarepta CEO Chris Garabedian's favorite person today.

AstraZeneca dials up its immuno-oncology focus with blockbuster hopes

AstraZeneca's internal forecast for a bright future is heavily dependent on a cache of new cancer immunotherapies, and the U.K. drugmaker is planning to test its lead oncology treatment in more and more tumor types with hopes of delivering on a $6.5 billion peak sales estimate.

Big Pharma is using its venture cash to outsource early R&D to biotech

Analysts at Silicon Valley Bank have been crunching the numbers on biotech investing, and they have found that a group of busy corporate venture arms has fundamentally changed the landscape for startups and the entire field of early-state drug development--with some big implications for the current crop of industry upstarts.

Gene therapy biotech Avalanche banks $102M in an up-sized IPO

Menlo Park, CA's Avalanche Biotechnologies pulled off a $102 million Wall Street debut, planning to spend its new cash on a pipeline of gene therapies for ocular diseases.

Sanofi, Regeneron pay $67M for a shortcut in the blockbuster PCSK9 race with Amgen

Sanofi and Regeneron just stole a march on Amgen in the race to get their PCSK9 cardio drug through the FDA and onto the market. The two companies revealed Wednesday evening that they had picked up a priority review voucher BioMarin had won for a recent rare disease drug approval, paying $67.5 million for the regulatory shortcut. They'll split the cost and share in the benefit, shaving four months off the regulatory review time for alirocumab.

Gilead bags a portfolio of HIV-neutralizing antibodies

Gilead has picked up the exclusive rights to develop a set of HIV-neutralizing antibodies discovered at Theraclone in collaboration with the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative and The Scripps Research Institute. Seattle-based Theraclone, which used its tech platform I-STAR in the project, picked up an unspecified set of milestones and an upfront payment in the deal.

Sanofi, Regeneron prep their PCSK9 cardio contender for FDA review after PhIII sweep

Sanofi and Regeneron are heading to the FDA with a potential blockbuster cardiovascular treatment, touting positive results from a slew of Phase III trials in which the drug slashed patients' bad cholesterol.

Immuno-oncology partnering-palooza continues with Genentech, AstraZeneca deals

Demonstrating yet again that AstraZeneca sees a big future for itself in the hot immuno-oncology field, the pharma giant today unveiled another collaboration on a combo for MEDI-4736, its anti-PD-L1 therapy looking to suit up for some blockbuster competition in treating cancer. Japan's Kyowa Hakko Kirin is matching its anti-CCR4 antibody, mogamulizumab, with AstraZeneca's MEDI-4736 to gauge its efficacy and safety in an exploratory Phase I/Ib study. And AstraZeneca will also match its anti-CTLA-4 antibody tremelimumab with Kyowa's drug in a separate combination.

AstraZeneca bets on respiratory growth with $2.1B Almirall deal

AstraZeneca has signed an agreement to pick up Almirall's respiratory business for up to $2.1 billion, hoping to shoulder its way to the front of a blockbuster market for COPD treatments.

Sarepta's boardroom intrigue clouds a promising drug's future

After Sarepta Therapeutics' former head scientist blamed his swift ouster on "serious disagreements" with CEO Chris Garabedian, the company has moved to limit its chief executive's power, according to a report, especially when it comes to meetings with the FDA over the biotech's much-scrutinized lead drug.

UPDATED: Amgen axing up to 2,900 staffers, shuttering R&D campus in revamp

Bracing for an expensive round of late-stage studies and potential drug launches as it ramps up work on a slate of new biosimilars, Amgen reported Tuesday evening that it plans to trim up to 15% of the company's workforce, shutting down facilities in Colorado and Washington state as it slashes up to 2,900 staffers.

Quark's RNAi treatment misses the mark in a Phase II kidney trial

Quark Pharmaceuticals' gene-silencing treatment for kidney transplant complications missed its primary endpoint in a Phase II trial, possibly jeopardizing a deal with Novartis worth up to $680 million.

Merck Serono steps into IO spotlight with PhII cancer study

Looking to share some of the spotlight focused on the immuno-oncology arena, Merck Serono says it has launched a mid-stage study of MSB0010718C, an anti-PD-L1 antibody.

Resurgent Merck to accelerate R&D spending in H2, hunt new drug deals

With investors focused almost exclusively on earnings and R&D programs today, Merck quietly managed to slip in news of a setback in its quarterly report, noting that the FDA has rejected its marketing application for the fertility treatment corifollitropin alfa.