News

Pulmatrix backs its way onto Wall Street with merger deal

Respiratory biotech Pulmatrix is taking an end-around path to the public market, signing a deal to merge with tiny Ruthigen to better fund its pipeline of inhalable treatments.

R&D exec Tal Zaks leaps from flagging Sanofi to fast-growing Moderna

While a long list of biopharma companies have been dropping the ax on R&D staffers in recent weeks and months, some of the top execs being shown the exit are finding that new doors are opening as fast as old positions are whisked away. Today, Tal Zaks underscored the bright side of restructuring, being named chief medical officer at Moderna Therapeutics a month after he was among 100 oncology R&D staffers who were ushered out at Sanofi in a recent reorganization.

Cidara Therapeutics makes a quick leap into the growing Q1 IPO queue

A little more than 8 months after jumping out of stealth mode with a $32 million venture round and a game plan to develop new antifungals, Cidara Therapeutics CEO Jeff Stein is jumping into the queue for Nasdaq with an IPO designed to raise $69 million.

Amgen scores a victory for PCSK9, halving cardio risks after one year

A new generation of cardiovascular drugs has proved itself capable of lowering bad cholesterol across dozens of Phase III trials, but many physicians are holding out to see whether doing so can meaningfully improve patients' lives. In an early peek at some long-term data, one such injected therapy from Amgen halved the risk of major cardiovascular problems after one year of treatment, bolstering the case for the whole class of drugs.

Merck can't get the sugammadex curse lifted, faces 3rd FDA rejection

Merck's anesthesia drug sugammadex has been cited repeatedly over the years as one of the top experimental meds in the pharma giant's pipeline, a trophy obtained in its megamerger with Schering. But the treatment has racked up a painful series of setbacks over the years, starting with its first rejection at the hands of the FDA 7 years ago and continuing now with a third looming rejection over unresolved questions surrounding a hypersensitivity study performed for its pitch to the agency.

XBiotech lines up for a $76M IPO to fund its antibody R&D

Austin, TX's XBiotech has filed to make a $76 million Wall Street debut, plotting to bankroll a fleet of antibody therapies and an ambitious plan for a manufacturing and R&D campus.

Baxter's latest hemophilia drug comes through in Phase III

Baxter, on the eve of biotech spinout, declared Phase III victory for a hemophilia treatment designed to help patients not responding to standard therapy.

With drug discovery ambitions, 23andMe recruits Genentech vet Scheller

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)...

Bristol-Myers heads back to the FDA with its long-delayed hep C drug

Bristol-Myers Squibb is finally in line for FDA approval for its once-rejected hepatitis C daclatasvir, angling to take third place among companies with next-generation cures for the virus.

Biogen Idec trims R&D staff, looks for new talent in chemistry, neurology

Biogen Idec took a look at its R&D group and decided to trim out a small group of its research staffers on Thursday. A spokesperson for the company said today that about 20 staffers were let go following a review of the company's long-term goals.

Third Rock's faded Ember gets resuscitated in merger deal

Ember Therapeutics, a Third Rock Ventures-founded biotech startup that closed its doors late last year, is getting a second chance thanks to a small New York drug developer.

Allergy biotech hauls in $80M for its oral immunotherapy

Food allergy upstart Allergen Research Corporation raised an $80 million B round to get its lead candidate into late-stage development, pushing ahead with a treatment for peanut allergies.

Sanofi backs immunotherapy hub, U.K. mulls its own 'breakthrough,' Allergy player banks £20M

In this week's EuroBiotech Report, Marseille made a pitch to turn its rich history of immunity research into a seat at the top table of immunotherapy R&D. Sanofi and Innate Pharma have signed up as founders of the lab at the center of the push, which hopes to turn scientific hypotheses into preclinically validated, licensing-ready research programs. And more.

Sustainable bull market or biotech bubble? What do you think?

Well over 300 responses have been gathered so far, which is not a bad beginning for our first survey.

U.K. looks to FDA 'breakthrough' status for inspiration in regulatory revamp

The United Kingdom government has established the scope of the hotly anticipated review into the development and reimbursement of drugs. And the independent panel is being tasked with looking beyond the U.K.'s borders for inspiration, with an analysis of what can be learnt from the U.S. FDA's "breakthrough" designation on its to-do list.

Neuralstem tanks on cloudy results for its ALS treatment

Neuralstem unveiled positive top-line safety results for its in-development ALS therapy, but some murky efficacy data led investors to question the future of the stem cell treatment, sending the biotech's shares down as much as 25%.

Epizyme retrieves global rights to cancer drug in $110M deal

Pumped by the potential commercial impact of their EZH2 inhibitor EPZ-6438, Epizyme is dragging back global rights to the drug in what the Cambridge, MA-based biotech is calling a "transformative" deal.

23andMe dives into biotech with Genentech R&D star Richard Scheller on board

Since its foundation in 2006, 23andMe has gathered genetic info on more than 850,000 people by processing spit tests at $99 a pop. Now the Mountain View, CA, outfit is planning to mine that trove of data for drug targets, transforming into a biotech company and hiring a decorated ex-Genentech luminary to steer the way.

J&J partner Aduro rides the immuno-oncology wave with $86M IPO

Aduro Biotech is taking its "breakthrough" set of immuno-oncology projects to Wall Street, where they will see if investors still have a big appetite for biotech IPOs. The company filed its S-1 on Wednesday, laying out its case for an $86 million initial offering that will help fund its late-stage work in the field.

AstraZeneca gambles on a $40M round for diabetes/cardio biotech PhaseBio

Malvern, PA-based PhaseBio rounded up $40 million in Series C money to pursue its R&D dreams in the diabetes arena, bringing in pharma giant AstraZeneca as a backer in the process.