The FierceBiotech panel: Top research execs tackle the fast-changing field of cancer drug R&D

Looking over a list of the FDA's "breakthrough" drugs for the past two-and-a-half years, you can see a full lineup of the most promising cancer therapies to hit the market in recent times. Drugs like Keytruda (pembrolizumab) from Merck ($MRK) or Pfizer's ($PFE) Ibrance (palbociclib) and Imbruvica from J&J ($JNJ) and Pharmacyclics.

All these therapies were delivered by development groups and companies that are working on a whole new timetable for oncology meds. Traditional development schedules are being meshed together, demonstrating how pipeline efforts can be accelerated for everyone in biopharma; one of the most important trends influencing drug development strategies today.

Some of the leaders in the field will be gathering for a special FierceBiotech panel discussion on clinical trial design, execution and new technologies for cancer drugs, which I'll be moderating at the upcoming annual meeting of BIO in Philadelphia on June 16. I'll be joined by Roy Baynes, Merck's senior vice president for global clinical development; Mark Frohlich, head of research at Juno Therapeutics ($JUNO); Peter Lebowitz, head of oncology R&D at J&J; and Robert Iannone, head of immuno-oncology at AstraZeneca.

Taking the lead on drug development requires a deep understanding of what the FDA and the EMA expect by way of convincing data. And with billions of dollars of potential new revenue on the line for drugs that are fundamentally changing the way cancer is treated, this is one of the most critical discussions in the R&D industry today.

I hope you'll come by and join us for this panel event in Philadelphia, which includes a Q&A with the audience and a pre/post-event meet and greet. You can check it out and register here. -- John Carroll, editor-in-chief (email | Twitter)