Blog Archives

Top 5 News: 1/9-1/15

Top 5 logo1) Reports of GE’s move follow years of local expansion of its life sciences business – BBJ, 1/13/2016
News that GE is moving its headquarters to the state comes a year and a half after the company moved the headquarters for its life sciences business to Marlborough.
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2)  Key takeaways from the Shire-Baxalta deal — and the state’s new largest drugmaker BBJ, 1/11/2016
With the planned acquisition announced this morning of two drugmakers both with a major presence in the Bay State, Shire Pharmaceuticals could soon be the state’s biggest drugmaker, eclipsing Biogen in employees and very possibly in both revenue and market value.
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3) Drug trailblazers Moderna, Juno grab forum’s spotlight Boston Globe, 1/15/2016
 New ways to fight diseases are guaranteed to get plenty of attention at the top gathering of health care entrepreneurs and investors. So it’s no surprise that Moderna Therapeutics Inc. and Juno Therapeutics Inc., pioneers in potentially game-changing drug discovery technologies, emerged as two of the highest profile companies at this week’s J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference.
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4)  State opens annual tax program for life science firms that create jobs BBJ, 1/14/2016
In a good sign for continued funding of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, the state agency today announced it’s taking applications for the annual tax incentive program which rewards companies for creating jobs.
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5) NIH pumps $260m into search for disease genes that matter – STAT, 1/14/2016
Federal science officials on Thursday announced the launch of a $260 million program to identify rare gene variants that raise or lower people’s risk of developing such common conditions as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and autism — the latest Big Science effort to mine DNA sequences for medical breakthroughs.
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Top 5 News: 12/4-12/11

Top 5 logo1) Baxalta wins FDA approval with a treatment for a rare bleeding disease FierceBiotech, 12/8/2015
Baxalta ($BXLT) picked up FDA approval for a drug that treats von Willebrand disease, a rare inherited bleeding disorder that results from a missing protein.
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2) For Epizyme chief executive, the work is personalBoston Globe, 12/4/2015
Epizyme Inc.’s new chief executive Robert Bazemore understands the disease his company is targeting only too well. When he was introduced to employees this summer, Bazemore surprised them by disclosing that he’s a survivor of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a life-threatening blood cancer that could potentially be treated by the company’s lead drug candidate.
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3) Novo Nordisk partners with IBM Watson Health to develop diabetes management tools BBJ, 12/10/2015
Novo Nordisk plans to use IBM Watson Health to analyze its data on patients with diabetes, announcing today an agreement with the IBM subsidiary.
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4) Drug may give those leaving jail a better shot at recovery – Boston Globe, 12/9/2015
But the drug itself may not be the real game-changer, said Dr. Barbara Herbert, president of the Massachusetts chapter of the American Society of Addiction Medicine. More crucial, she said, are efforts by the manufacturer, Waltham drug maker Alkermes, to push prisons to link departing inmates with services on the outside, measures often lacking in the past.
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5) FDA approves Alexion drug for ultra-rare disease – Reuters, 12/8/2015
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday approved Alexion Pharmaceutical Inc’s treatment for an ultra-rare and potentially fatal genetic disorder.
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Top 5 News: 11/28-12/4

Top 5 logo1) FDA approves new Bristol-Myers treatment for multiple myeloma PharmaLive, 11/30/2015
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said on Monday it had approved a drug to be sold by Bristol-Myers Squibb Co as a treatment for a form of blood cancer.
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2) Amid takeover rumors, Baxalta opens new Kendall Square research center STAT, 12/2/2015
A new technique for so-called gene editing that formed the basis of well-funded Cambridge startups like Editas Medicine and CRISPR Therapeutics may have another use: Turning off genes that cause a rare form of muscular dystrophy.
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3) Takeda exec to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro alongside blood cancer patientsBBJ, 12/2/2015
A nine-day trek to the summit of the world’s tallest free-standing mountain is a feat for even the healthiest of athletes. Next month, a local biotech executive will attempt to do so as part of a team in which nearly a quarter of the climbers have cancer.
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4) Everything You Need to Know About CRISPR Gene Editing’s Monster Year – MIT Technology Review, 12/1/2015
The last 12 months have been incredible ones for genetic engineering. That’s mostly due to a new technology called CRISPR—an easy, cheap, and very precise way to “edit” the DNA of living cells.
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5) New law restores lost time for makers of some drugs – STAT, 11/30/2015
After nearly three years of controversy, President Obama has signed a law that resets approval dates for some medicines that contain controlled substances. The goal is to streamline the process used by the US Drug Enforcement Agency to place prescription drugs that are controlled substances on a list of medicines for which distribution is restricted.
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Top 5 News: 8/15-8/21

Top 5 logo1) F.D.A. Approves Addyi, a Libido Pill for Women – New York Times, 8/18/2015
The first prescription drug to enhance women’s sexual drive won regulatory approval on Tuesday, clinching a victory for a lobbying campaign that had accused the Food and Drug Administration of gender bias for ignoring the sexual needs of women.
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2) Baxalta’s Cambridge-based R&D chief describes new model as ‘small R, big D’ BBJ, 8/20/2015
Since Baxalta rejected a $30 billion bid from Shire last month, Baxalta CEO Ludwig Hantson has called the company’s pipeline of potential drugs “underappreciated” and said that “the new research and development model is gaining positive momentum.”
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3) Sarepta and BioMarin race for an FDA tag that could be worth $350M-plus – FierceBiotech, 8/21/2015
Rivals Sarepta Therapeutics ($SRPT) and BioMarin ​Pharmaceutical ($BMRN) are in line to become the next recipients of an FDA coupon for a fast review, each potentially picking up a sellable asset that recently brought in $350 million on the open market.
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4) GlaxoSmithKline flips an MS project to Novartis for up to $1B – FierceBiotech, 8/21/2015
Novartis ($NVS) is paying GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK) as much as $1 billion for the rights to a mid-stage multiple sclerosis treatment, betting it can develop an heir to the blockbuster Gilenya, soon to lose patent protection.
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5) Biogen teams up with Columbia to decode ALS – FierceBiotech, 8/18/2015
Biogen ($BIIB) is joining Columbia University in an effort to sequence the genes of 1,500 people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, hoping to better understand the disease’s underlying biology to inform drug R&D.
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Top 5 News: 8/1-8/7

Top 5 logo1) Top 10 Best Cities for Life Science Jobs – BioSpace, 8/5/2015
While you can find successful biotech and pharma organizations in virtually every major metropolitan area in the U.S., one of the simplest ways to increase your chances of landing a life science job is to go where there are higher concentrations of employers. BioSpace.com, a leading online life science community, refers to these areas as hotbeds—thriving clusters of industry employers located within specific geographic regions.
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2) FDA Approves First 3-D Printed Drug – Forbes, 8/4/2015
On August 3, 2015, Aprecia Phramaceuticals, announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved it’s SPRITAM drug for the treatment of epilepsy. The company claims that SPRITAM is the first drug ever approved by the FDA that is manufactured using 3-D printing technologies.
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3) Teva buys into genomics to bolster its in-house R&D – FierceBiotech, 8/4/2015
Israeli pharma giant Teva Pharmaceutical ($TEVA) is investing in Cambridge, MA’s Immuneering, taking up a stake in the genomics upstart and tapping its expertise to help guide internal drug development.
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4) Baxalta Confirms Receipt of Highly Conditional, Unsolicited Proposal from Shire FierceBiotech, 8/4/2015
Baxalta Incorporated (NYSE:BXLT) today confirmed receipt from Shire plc (LSE: SHP, NASDAQ: SHPG) of a highly conditional, unsolicited proposal to acquire all of the outstanding common shares of Baxalta in an all-stock transaction under which Baxalta shareholders would receive for each Baxalta share 0.1687 Shire ADRs.
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5) These law firms are leading the way on Boston’s biotech IPO boom BBJ, 8/5/2015
The explosion in biotech initial public offerings in Massachusetts over the past two-and-a-half years has most benefitted Boston’s three largest law firms, as well as a relative newcomer to the city’s legal scene, according to a Business Journal analysis.
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