The Cross-Border Biotech Blog

Biotechnology, Health and Business in Canada, the United States and Worldwide

Tag Archives: foundations

Biotech Trends at BIO 2010

As I’m preparing for the BIO conference in Chicago next week, I’m excited to see that several of the biotech trends we’ve been following on the blog are showing up as conference sessions.

  • Interested in “A New Kind of Non-Dilutive Financing and Fundraising: Partnering With Not-for-Profits”? Get an early start at our trends page on Commercialization by non-profit foundations!
  • Does “Comparative Effectiveness Research and the Government Role” or “Transforming Health Care Through Personalized Medicine” catch your eye? Check out the stories we’ve highlighted on Comparative Effectiveness and Personalized Medicine!
  • Of course, with the new regulatory pathway created by Health Reform legislation in the U.S., Follow-on Biologics (aka Biosimilars) are all the rage at BIO this year.
  • and the whole thing kicks off with Lilly’s General Counsel speaking on “Leveraging IP to Spur Global Biotechnology Innovation, Investment and Jobs” – emphsizing the link between IP Constituencies and Global Innovation that we have been following for some time.

Stay tuned for news from these and other sessions as we hit the conference next week!

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Biotech Trends of 2009: Three Biggest Losers

When we started the blog almost a year ago, we identified what we thought would be key trends for biotech investors and companies to watch.  Most panned out, but a few turned out to be… not so trendy.  You can call them premature (if you’re feeling generous) or call them dumb (if you’re feeling mean); but you can definitely call them losers, since they clearly failed their appointed purpose (making us look smart informing you, the reader).

Without further ado, 2009’s three biotech trends that weren’t:

  • Genetically engineered animals.  Way back in February, the FDA released final guidance on GE animal approvals and approved ATryn (a drug produced in the milk of GE goats).  We thought 2009 would be a year of approvals and other successes in this area, but we’ve hardly herd (sic, sorry) from anyone since.  We’ll keep an eye out for ewe, but this is one trend that probably won’t be baaaaack.
  • Commercialization by Foundations.  Despite a late-breaking story on this front about creative approaches in ALS and Diabetes communities, this “trend” has been another loser.  When we kicked things off, we identified two driving forces behind this trend, and each has taught us a lesson: (1) never use the words “availability heuristic” in a blog post about biotech; and (2) a sinking tide sinks all boats.  The crappy economic environment in 2009 was really no better for foundations than for anyone else, but we look forward to more creativity and private enterprise in this area next year.
  • Patent Reform.  It huffed, and it puffed, but with S.610 still in committee, patent reform carries over to another year.  Maybe now that health care reform is almost done using up all the reform oxygen, the patent system will get another turn. Don’t hold your breath, though.

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Trends in 2009: You’ve Got a Friend In…

story yesterday reminded me about a movement I think we’ll start seeing a lot more of — funding to commercial entities by disease advocacy foundations.  This will be fueled in 2009 by two factors:

  • a self-perpetuating availability heuristic that will encourage foundations to seek commercialization opportunities; and
  • an economic environment that will have companies looking harder than ever for non-dilutive financing.

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