The upstart revolution in biotech

In the lead-up to BIO's annual meeting in Boston next week (see below), I've been lining up one-on-ones with some of the industry's emerging companies as I finalize our fifth annual Fierce 15. It struck me that this year there's a distinct abundance of promising companies being bankrolled by some very eager venture capital groups. It's a thoroughly non-scientific approach to trend-spotting, but for me it underscores just how strong the drug development field is right now. A good business plan, experienced management and a couple of intelligent licensing deals can propel a company into clinical development in relatively short order. These biotech upstarts may just find a shortcut around the old, lengthy timelines on human drug development. - John Carroll