News

Baxter wins FDA approval for another hemophilia drug

Baxter widened its hemophilia franchise on the eve of its breakup, winning FDA approval for a drug that treats a rare form of the bleeding disorder.

GlaxoSmithKline cozies up to Five Prime for respiratory R&D

GlaxoSmithKline, facing widespread scrutiny for its underperforming respiratory business, has expanded its relationship with Five Prime Therapeutics, digging in to discover new treatments in the field.

AstraZeneca gets some EU encouragement for its $2B cancer hopeful

European regulators have recommended an early approval for AstraZeneca's new ovarian cancer treatment, welcome news for the company as it defends rosy sales estimates for its oncology pipeline.

Shire CFO to exit in wake of failed AbbVie deal

Welcome to this week's Chutes and Ladders, our roundup of hirings and retirings throughout the industry. Please send the good word--or the bad--from your shop to Michael Gibney (email | Twitter)...

NPS Pharma will have to wait another three months for an FDA OK

The FDA has postponed its final decision on an orphan drug from NPS Pharma, taking its time with the company's application and delaying the fate of a closely watched therapy.

Google Ventures taps Boston brains for EU unit, Big Pharma VCs back Forendo, Swiss IPO halted

In this week's EuroBiotech Report, Google revealed further details of its $100 million (€79 million) European venture capital unit, which is hunting for biotechs and startups in other sectors from its digs in London. And more.

Boehringer, Vitae survive first clinical challenge in a crowded Alzheimer's race

The newly public Vitae reported after the market closed on Thursday that the oral BI1181181/VTP-37948 hit the goal posts on a key biomarker for BACE, or beta secretase, flushing a prime suspect behind the disease without triggering any red safety flags in a pair of Phase I studies among a small group of healthy volunteers.

In biotech's boardrooms, there are 10 men for every one woman, report says

The average board of directors in the biotech world is roughly 90% male, according to a new analysis, and more than half of all industry boardrooms host no women whatsoever, striking numbers that illustrate a sector that struggles with diversity.

Women's health biotech Forendo raises $15M from some pharma giants

Finland's Forendo Pharma has pulled in €12 million ($15.2 million) to advance its treatment for a painful uterine condition, drawing the support of a few major drugmakers.

Novartis racks up a new slate of promising PhIII data for secukinumab

Just days after an FDA advisory group gave its unanimous blessing to Novartis for secukinumab (AIN457) as a new treatment for plaque psoriasis, the pharma giant has produced a new slate of Phase III data backing the IL-17 therapy for ankylosing spondylitis.

Lilly bets another $375M on Zymeworks' two-pronged cancer tech

Eli Lilly is expanding its relationship with Canadian biotech Zymeworks, signing a broader deal that promises up to $375 million in milestones for its partner as the two collaborate on cancer immunotherapies.

Celgene adds $1B-plus immuno-oncology deal, buyout option for Sutro

Close to two years after Celgene closed its first development deal with Sutro Biopharma, the prolific partnering machine at the big biotech has come back and taken an option on buying the company and its antibody-drug conjugates and bispecifics. And Celgene is expanding their collaboration to include immuno-oncology drugs, the hottest R&D field in biotech.

J&J heads to Texas with its R&D farm system, scouting for biotech startups

Johnson & Johnson is expanding its network of biopharma incubators, taking to Texas with a plan to host as many as 50 local biotech startups.

Pfizer, Novartis chip in on $17M round for an Atlas upstart focused on pain

The busy partners at Atlas Venture have gathered together a $17 million Series A for their latest biotech creation: Quartet Medicine, which pairs together two scientific founders who have been exploring the frontiers of pain management. This is Atlas' fourth maiden round for one of their biotech launches in a little more than a week, with Cambridge, MA-based Quartet joining Unum, Raze and Bicycle in a rare streak of startups. And there are likely some more to come.

Proteon banks $61M in a down-sized IPO as it moves on without Novartis

Proteon Therapeutics priced its IPO below its expected range, clearing $61 million to pay the way for its investigational vascular drug.

Viamet drops IPO, spins out cancer drug as ex-Elan chief funds $60M round

Confronted by an increasingly tough group of biotech investors, Research Triangle Park, NC-based Viamet Pharmaceuticals has scrapped plans for an IPO, instead opting to grab a $60 million venture round to finance its development work on antifungals while spinning out one of its assets into a separate company. And it's working with one of the most controversial figures in biotech to push the company forward.

Roche blueprints a sprawling $1.8B R&D complex for pRED

They're building a new home for John Reed and Roche's pRED research group in Basel--and the pharma giant is thinking big. Roche said today that it is committing $1.8 billion to build a new research center in Switzerland that will encompass four new office and lab buildings to house 1,900 R&D staffers.

Regulus soars on promising--but early--results for its hep C contender

Regulus Therapeutics, at work on a microRNA approach to hepatitis C, watched its shares skyrocket on positive early data for its lead candidate, which significantly reduced viral loads with a single dose.

J&J gives the Ebola vaccine push a $200M boost

With several players now in the race toward a vaccine for Ebola, Johnson & Johnson says it is ramping up development efforts toward its own program, devoting $200 million to the cause.

GlaxoSmithKline weighs an IPO for HIV-focused ViiV as it sharpens the budget ax

GlaxoSmithKline is considering taking its HIV joint venture public, tersely dropping hints of an IPO for ViiV Healthcare as it lays out plans to again slash R&D costs and refocus its business.