Red Carpet

For big biotech game. BIO International Convention

Red Carpet for Big Biotech Game

Red Carpet for Big Biotech Game













BIO International Convention, Chicago 2013

With millions of lives and hundreds of billions of dollars at stake, the game could not have higher stakes.

One might wonder why HealthyLivinG would report on a Big Pharma/Biotech conference—given that we dedicate so much coverage to natural health and medicine. Yet we must give Pharma/Biotech well deserved credit for addressing the most grievous diseases, stretching life expectancy and saving human lives every day. One could not report on the BIO International Convention 2013 in Chicago without feeling the deep commitment to cure cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, heart diseases and improve lives that emanated from the hallways and exhibits.

Advanced molecular medical science lives inside the walls of Pharma/ Biotech, attracts world’s best human resources due to the fact that medical scientists, passionate about treating their, often a very young and lethally diagnosed patients, are determined to make a change, which is possible where the cutting edge science thrives, and can only be supported by blockbuster drug obvious reason: the Food and Drug Administration approval cost is about to reach a billon per molecule.

Red Carpet for Biotech Game

Red Carpet for Biotech Game

But even Big Pharma/Biotech can’t do this alone. Democratization in biotechnology has made research at the discovery level accessible to any small lab. Startups from many nations discover molecules that just might hold an important cure for a disease—but they don’t have resources to bring that research to patients; startups must partner with drug makers early on, well before beginning to design clinical trials, or the research will die.

BIO Convention 2013 joined for a round-table conversation the tsars of modern medical molecular science- Big Pharma/Biotech’ Research and Development leaders: Briggs Morrison, Executive Vice President of Global Medicines Development and Chief Medical Officer at AstraZeneca; Martin Fitchet, Chief Operating Officer and Heart Drug Expert at Johnson & Johnson; Jose-Carlos Gutiérrez-Ramos, Senior Vice President of Research and Development at Pfizer; and Perry Nisen, Senior Vice President of Science and Innovation at GlaxoSmithKline, to discuss ways of helping early stage discoveries make their way into the giants’ pipelines.

We spoke to Morrison, who gave a sense of how the company’s standards in evaluating scientific opportunities have shifted, saying now it’s not just when the medicine works, whether it’s effective and safe, but does it meet an unmet medical need? Briggs said AstraZeneca will double the number of molecules to third stage clinical trials pipeline within three to four years and accelerate the timeline on critical molecules, those which have the most promise, the best science and the ability to meet the largest size of unmet medical needs. “So if we can pre-invest in those molecules, the space between phases gets smaller. We put a lot of energy in trying to simplify the things in our very complex industry.” Briggs said that AstraZeneca will focus on developing drugs to combat cancer, respiratory, heart, inflammation and autoimmune diseases.

Red Carpet for Big Biotech Game

Red Carpet for Big Biotech Game

Tsars of modern medical molecular science: Research and Development leaders Briggs Morrison, EVP of Global Medicines Development and Chief Medical Officer at AstraZeneca; Martin Fitchet, COO and Heart Drug Expert at Johnson & Johnson; Jose-Carlos Gutiérrez-Ramos, SVP of Research and Development at Pfizer; and Perry Nisen, SVP of Science and Innovation at GlaxoSmithKline.

We interviewed Nisen about the most exciting current drugs in GSK’s pipeline. He named two drugs for skin cancer, lung disease, diabetes and HIv filed for FDA approval, many more in stage 2 and 3 trials and advocated early partnerships for the sake of developing promising molecules and conducting clinical trials.

Red Carpet for Big Biotech Game

Red Carpet for Big Biotech Game

In addition to its vast pipeline, GSK plans to fund the work of 40 scientists in 20 labs, hoping for a targeted innovation and discovery with plans to offer a $1 million prize to the scientist or team that can come up with a solution in the following area of research. Almost every disease that Pharma/Biotech works in has a neural circuit controlling the biology. GSK’s scientists have pioneered an incipient field in drug discovery, in an effort to develop new therapeutics that can fight disease by targeting electrical signals that harmonize human biology. GSK aims to create a new type of complex neural stimulation device that could tinker with diseases at the cellular level, combining it with molecular medicines that could potentially fine-tune complex nerve systems that control body functions.

Red Carpet for Biotech Game

Red Carpet for Biotech Game

How about researching a mechanism of action of an antiosteoporosis molecule in space, where a zero pressure on a kneecap can be achieved? The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space, selected by NASA to manage the International Space Station (ISS) and CASIS and Merck initiated a disease research plan on the ISS to focus on therapeutic monoclonal antibodies, which are engineered proteins designed to bind to targets that cause diseases, potentially allowing greater specificity than conventional therapies with fewer side effects. With more projects planned for the ISS, "This work will demonstrate the scientific economic advantages of conducting therapeutic research in space, and the benefits it will have for human health right here on Earth," said CASIS Interim Executive Director Jim Royston.

Innovation and partnering for the sake of new molecular discoveries are critical to the core existence of the human race, as human bodies have proven to be fragile to disease and consequences of its own environmental activity. So far, the US leads medical innovation because it homes most of the Pharma/Biotech giants. In the last decade the United States alone has been responsible for producing more than half of the new medicines globally.

Red Carpet for Big Biotech Game

Red Carpet for Big Biotech Game

Governments and states ingeniously fight for biotech science: Kentucky offers to match any governmental funding for any biotech program by doubling it.
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