Merck KGaA inks cancer metabolism drug discovery alliance with Selvita

Merck KGaA has teamed up with Selvita to discover small molecule drugs against multiple oncology indications. The alliance builds on an earlier two-year research collaboration into the discovery of enzyme inhibitors to regulate metabolic processes in cancer cells.

Marquee VCs back a $40M round for Crinetics' acromegaly drug

A group of marquee venture investors has joined forces to back a $40 million Series A for Crinetics Pharmaceuticals, an early-stage biotech in San Diego that has been working on a next-gen oral treatment for acromegaly.

Daiichi Sankyo's cancer drug wins the FDA's coveted 'breakthrough' tag

Daiichi Sankyo picked up the FDA's breakthrough therapy designation for a Phase III cancer drug, putting it in line for preferential access to agency experts as it moves toward approval.

Voyager spells out its $92M IPO pitch as Wall Street sours on biotech

Gene therapy developer Voyager Therapeutics is angling for as much as $92 million in a planned IPO, braving choppy waters for biotech after a string of disappointing debuts for life sciences companies.

CAR-T looks great in the clinic, but how do you commercialize it?

Novartis, Juno Therapeutics and Kite Pharma have made headlines around the world with a new technology for modifying T cells to better attack cancer. But translating clinical promise into a marketable product will likely prove difficult if and when so-called CAR-T therapies win approval.

Sanofi dumps a $663M MS deal with India's Glenmark

Sanofi has backed away from a multiple sclerosis treatment developed alongside Indian drugmaker Glenmark Pharmaceuticals after the antibody came up short in a midstage trial.

With a new FDA nod, Novartis enters a crowded COPD field

Novartis won FDA approval for a combination COPD treatment it hopes can steal market share from entrenched rivals GlaxoSmithKline and Boehringer Ingelheim, planning to launch the inhaler next year.

AstraZeneca's olaparib looks promising for a targeted set of prostate cancer patients

Scientists in the U.K. say that AstraZeneca's drug olaparib, approved by the FDA late last year to treat ovarian cancer and sold as Lynparza, has demonstrated distinct signs of efficacy in a small and very targeted group of prostate cancer patients who share a distinct type of genetic mutation.

Repros tanks on another FDA hurdle for its 'low-T' treatment

Repros Therapeutics is facing yet another setback for its long-delayed testosterone treatment as the FDA has backed out of a preapproval meeting and raised serious questions about the company's pivotal data.

Former Covidien CEO Almeida to head Baxter

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 Eric Sagonowsky (email) or...

Grifols bags €100M for Alzheimer's R&D; Ipsen inks $137M cancer deal; Oryzon raises €17M

In this week's EuroBiotech Report, Catalan biotech Grifols secured a €100 million ($110 million) loan from the European Investment Bank's €315 billion fund. The money will support a ratcheting up of R&D into Alzheimer's disease and other indications. And more.

Gilead tees up another hep C combo for FDA review

Gilead Sciences, reaping billions from its duo of approved hepatitis C therapies, is moving toward the market with a third pill that promises to cure a wider range of patients with the virus.

Cellectis shares jump after off-the-shelf CAR-T clears manufacturing hurdle

Cellectis has completed three production runs of its off-the-shelf CAR-T therapy under GMP conditions. The news sent shares in Cellectis up by 20% in early trading in Paris, emphasizing the key role manufacturing know-how is seen as playing in the upcoming immuno-oncology scrap.

MD Anderson doubles up on cancer 'Moon Shots'

MD Anderson, which has attracted a who's who in immuno-oncology as partners for its Moon Shots R&D program, is adding 6 new cancers to its list of targets.

Ultragenyx launches an RNA collaboration with upstart Arcturus

The rare disease specialists at Ultragenyx are turning to an upstart biotech for new platform technology.

BioBlast sets sights on PhIII after efficacy prompts early halt of mid-stage study

BioBlast Pharma has posted a glimpse at the data that prompted it to wrap up a Phase II trial after enrolling just one-third of the targeted number of patients. And while there is very little data available publicly to support BioBlast's optimism, the company thinks it has a strong enough hand to start discussing a Phase III trial with FDA.


Oryzon raises €17M ahead of planned IPO

Oryzon Genomics has topped up its bank balance through a private placement months ahead of its anticipated listing on the Madrid Stock Exchange. The €16.6 million ($18.4 million) investment gives Oryzon the cash to keep pushing ahead with its pipeline plans in the months until it goes public.


Biotech IPOs are staggering as the bulls begin to fade back

Third Rock startup MyoKardia staggered onto Nasdaq on Wednesday, pricing its IPO at $10 a share--a deep, bargain basement discount from the hefty range it set for itself.

The top 10 biopharma pipeline disasters of 2015

Drug R&D is a tough business. The odds are almost always against success, and the price to be paid for being wrong is cruelly high. That said, it did seem a little harder than usual this year to...

Grifols lands €100M EU loan to bankroll Alzheimer's R&D

Grifols has become one of the first companies to receive cash under the €315 billion (€344 billion) Juncker Investment Offensive. The €100 million the European Investment Bank is funneling into Grifols will support a ratcheting up of R&D into the use of plasma proteins to treat Alzheimer's and other diseases.