Sanofi is pairing up with Germany's BioNTech in a collaboration potentially worth $1.5 billion, licensing some early-stage cancer immunotherapies that use messenger RNA to target tumors.
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.
More than a year after its second big Phase III program for darapladib also turned out to be a bust, GlaxoSmithKline is reporting today that losmapimod--cited by CEO Andrew Witty as a top late-stage program--failed to measure up in the first leg of a clinical marathon. And it's not planning to fund step two.
Partners Merck and Incyte are broadening their oncology alliance, moving into Phase III with a pair of treatments that use the body's natural defenses to fight cancer.
After shunning public attention for more than a year, cancer immunotherapy startup Flexus Biosciences is ready for the limelight now that it is headed toward the clinic, has banked its first two venture rounds totaling $38 million and boasts impressive management, board and advisory rosters.
Immunocore has struck another cancer R&D pact with one of the world's top drugmakers, signing a deal with Eli Lilly that'll both bring in short-term revenue and help the biotech build value in its proprietary pipeline.
Today, Roche put out the word that their PD-L1 drug MPDL3280A won the FDA's coveted breakthrough therapy designation, potentially putting it on an inside track at the agency, which has been hurrying along new medicines in the pipeline.
MD Anderson's popular "moon-shot" immuno-oncology research project has won over another big industry player looking to play catch-up in the hottest race in cancer drug R&D. AstraZeneca's biologics arm, MedImmune, has become the latest Big Pharma player to join a team that has already attracted Pfizer and J&J.
What should we make of the heavy, some would say unhealthy, concentration of drug R&D in certain hot categories like oncology and inflammation?
At Merck, the already giant-sized hope that its cancer immunotherapy program for the PD-1 drug MK-3475 represents just swelled significantly in importance. Just ahead of its 2013 earnings report Wednesday, the pharma giant announced plans to tie up with a trio of major league biopharma partners to launch a whole new slate of combination studies that could significantly extend its reach in the oncology market.