Major Western device and medical technology firms launched Asia Pacific Medical Technology Association, or APACMed, pledging the association would unite a fragmented effort to work with regulators across a region that is both lucrative and frustrating on issues ranging from import rules to public tender guidelines.
The buzz around biotech in Asia has centered on friends and family bootstrap operations in China, local investor support in Taiwan and onto more formal state-backed incubation efforts in Japan, South Korea and Singapore along with boutique venture capital firms and investment arms of multinationals such as Eli Lilly Ventures.
Sigma-Aldrich formally opened its Asia-Pacific headquarters in Singapore on Friday, the latest major supplier to pharmaceutical manufacturers and research institutions in Asia to stake out a base in the wealth city-state that has seen an explosion in state-of-the-art manufacturing operations.
A team of investigators from Duke and the NUS Graduate Medical School in Singapore says they've come up with a novel one-two punch directed against mutant RAS that they believe could have broad potential in fighting cancers.
Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore's first prime minister, who developed the small city-state into a vibrant manufacturing center for petrochemicals, shipping, electronics and a financial hub also leaves a legacy for the drug and biotech industry in Asia that will play out over decades.
Singapore's Ministry of Health said that since the beginning of the year, it has been phasing in an extension of drug subsidies for intermediate and long-term care patients that allows them to buy their treatments at any approved point of care.
GlaxoSmithKline planted its flag in Singapore to build on a close relationship with the government of the wealthy city-state where CEO Andrew Witty worked and lived earlier in his career with the U.K. drugmaker.
When we got started at FierceBiotech more than 13 years ago, our world was actually quite small. The U.S. biotech hubs consumed a lot of our attention, along with the pipelines of all the Big Pharma companies, wherever they were based. But 6 years ago, well after Europe found Fierce, we began to seriously concentrate some added efforts on the continent. The EuroBiotech Report followed, and now we're stepping halfway around the world to focus on Asia with our new, twice-weekly report, FiercePharmaAsia.
Last September, Takeda announced it would be putting vaccines into their own specialty business unit to "accelerate the globalization" of the business. And now, it's positioning the unit geographically to do the same.
Japan's Takeda Pharmaceutical opened an emerging markets and vaccines headquarters in the gleaming new research hub Biopolis on Feb. 25 in the wealthy city-state as it looks to bring a Phase III dengue candidate through trials successfully and challenge Sanofi's lead in the space.