Latest Stories


CRISPR-Cas9

A CRISPR alternative for editing genes without cutting

17 June 2019

A well-known challenge facing scientists who want to use the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology to address a range of diseases is that it requires cutting DNA, which can lead to errors.

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Scinus Cell Expansion

Company on the Spot: A leap in stem cell therapy production

13 June 2019

Company on the Spot written by Michiel Jannink – CEO at Scinus Cell Expansion B.V., Managing Director Demcon Medical Systems

Scinus Cell Expansion is all about a new and exhilarating technique for cell therapy production. Current cell expansion methods do not deliver up to par standards.

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Biomarkers: in the era of molecular medicine

11 June 2019

Blog by Elaine Lima de Souza – Ph.D. in Sciences

The medical and scientific communities are both engaged in to understand and to develop solutions for a better quality of life. From basic to translational research, it is all that matters.

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alzheimers

Viral vaccines could be weapons against alzheimer’s disease

07 June 2019

Scientists in Sweden have found that some viruses can increase the buildup of protein ‘plaques’ linked to Alzheimer’s disease, a discovery that could lead to new vaccines treating the condition.

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cells

New understanding of how cells form tunnels may help in treating wounds, tumors

05 June 2019

A simple slice of the finger sends a complex series of interactions between types of cells into motion. Two types of cells in particular, called macrophages and fibroblasts, work together to clean up and repair the fibers destroyed by the cut.

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tissue engineering

Scientists use molecular tethers, chemical ‘light sabers’ for tissue engineering

03 June 2019

Tissue engineering could transform medicine. Instead of waiting for our bodies to regrow or repair damage after an injury or disease, scientists could grow complex, fully functional tissues in a laboratory for transplantation into patients.

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dna

UK scientists open bacterial genome up to making artificial proteins

31 May 2019

A research group from the University of Cambridge has created bacteria with less complexity in their genome, which could free up DNA code for producing synthetic proteins never before seen in nature.

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bcf career event 2019

BCF Career Event for career awareness, enhancing skills and networking

29 May 2019

Blog by Elaine Lima de Souza – Ph.D. in Sciences

Last week was the BCF Career Event in Utrecht. Events like this have many benefits. Mainly they create a great opportunity to network with companies and getting relevant leads that will help find your dream job.

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stroke

Stroke drug cocktail normalises brain fluids, restores movement in mic

27 May 2019

Adrenergic receptor (AdR) antagonists work by counteracting electrical and chemical disturbances in the brain. New research in mouse models suggests that a cocktail of these drugs may reduce the spread of tissue damage and aid in recovery. 

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cells

How proteins help influenza A bind and slice its way to cells

24 May 2019

Researchers have provided new insight on how two proteins help influenza A virus particles fight their way to human cells.

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pfizer

Pfizer pays up to €700M to acquire swiss biotech restoring bone growth in achondroplasia

22 May 2019

Pharma giant Pfizer is acquiring the Swiss biotech Therachon, which is developing a protein drug to boost bone growth in the genetic condition achondroplasia.

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rnai

RNAi therapy smashes solid tumours in preclinical tests

20 May 2019

Developed by the UK biotech Celixir, a therapy based on silencing genes with RNA molecules in a process called RNAi has shrunk tumours by 50% in culture.

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schizophrenia

Schizophrenia treatments could be tested and personalised using patients’ blood

17 May 2019

Scientists at the University of Cambridge have developed a way to screen treatments for schizophrenia on single cells from a patient’s blood sample, which could speed up drug discovery and help to personalize treatments for people with the condition.

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gene mutation

Newly discovered gene mutation reduces fear and anxiety, and increases social interaction

15 May 2019

Finnish researchers at the University of Eastern Finland and the University of Oulu have discovered of a new type of gene mutation that reduces fear and anxiety, and increases social interaction.

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antibiotic

Drug mopping up bacterial toxins shows potential to tackle antibiotic resistance in phase I

13 May 2019

An antibiotic-enhancing drug developed by the Swiss biotech Combioxin to tackle antibiotic resistance showed promising effects in a phase I trial.

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bcf

Want to elevate your career to the next level?

10 May 2019

BCF Career Event organises an event for everyone interested, active or wants to be active in the life sciences industry.

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next generation

Next-greneration CAR-T therapy shows promise in child’s neuroblastoma

08 May 2019

Cell Medica’s next-generation CAR-T cell therapy has resulted in ‘extensive tumour regression’ in a child with high-risk neuroblastoma, one of the deadliest types of childhood cancer.

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gels

Welding with stem cells for next-generation surgical glues

06 May 2019

Scientists at the University of Bristol have invented a new technology that could lead to the development of a new generation of smart surgical glues and dressings for chronic wounds.

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ISHEO

Company on the spot: Integrated Solution of Health Economics and Organizations (ISHEO)

03 May 2019

Company on the spot interview by Davide Integlia – CEO ISHEO

Innovation as a social phenomenon

“I think that innovation is a social phenomenon that comes from people’s skills, competencies, wishes and sense of respect for human beings and surrounding environment,

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medicine

Personalising precision medicine with combination therapies improves outcomes in cancer

29 April 2019

Precision oncology often relies on treating patients with a single, molecularly matched therapy that targets one mutation in their tumour.

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stem cell

First Stem Cell Therapy for Liver Failure Shows Promise in First Human Trials

26 April 2019

A stem cell therapy developed by the Belgian company Promethera has improved symptoms, such as jaundice, in patients with acute liver failure, a condition with no effective treatments.

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CRISPR

CRISPR edits out a deadly lung disease in mice before birth

24 April 2019

Some inherited diseases, including those that affect the lung, can lead to death at the time of or shortly after birth. What if we could use CRISPR to edit out malfunctioning genes before a baby is born?

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biotech woman

Biotechnology Industry Wants to Diversify Leadership

22 April 2019

“Continued progress requires an unprecedented level of innovation and problem solving—and this is best achieved by tapping into multiple and diverse perspectives and experiences,” said Helen Torley of BIO.

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meningites

Scientists Develop Treatment to Combat Antibiotic Resistance in Meningitis

20 April 2019

Researchers based in Sweden and Denmark are developing a meningitis treatment that could overcome antibiotic resistance by targeting white blood cells called neutrophils.

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corneal

UK Scientists Activate Stem Cells to Heal Corneal Injuries

17 April 2019

A group of researchers in the UK has developed a potential treatment for corneal injuries, such as those caused by chemical burns, by making surrounding tissue softer and letting stem cells regenerate damaged tissue.

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diabetes

Traveling guide for people with diabetes

15 April 2019

Diabetes currently affects 30.3 million Americans.  That’s nearly one in ten!

The odds that either you or someone you love suffers from diabetes are alarming. 

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VitroScan

VitroScan closes €800k seed funding round

12 April 2019

VitroScan, developing tests to predict treatment outcome for cancer patients, has closed a round of seed funding for €800.000. Lead investor Libertatis Ergo Holding B.V. (LEH) will be welcomed as new board member.

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Synthetic Bacterial Genome

Swiss Scientists Make Synthetic Bacterial Genome Using Computers

10 April 2019

Synthetic biology researchers at ETH Zurich are the first to construct a simplified artificial bacterial genome with the help of computer algorithms, which could lead to better-engineered microorganisms for the production of therapeutics and other chemicals.

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Galapagos with Rheumatoid Arthritis medicine

Galapagos Nears First Drug Approval with Phase III Success in Rheumatoid Arthritis

08 April 2019

Galapagos has released positive data from two phase III trials testing its flagship drug candidate, filgotinib, that will let the company and its partner Gilead apply for marketing approval.

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sequencing

New tool uses RNA sequencing to chart rich maps of cellular and tissue function

05 April 2019

A new technique developed by scientists at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard gives an unprecedented view of the cellular organization of tissues. Known as Slide-seq, the method uses genetic sequencing to draw detailed, three-dimensional maps of tissues, revealing not only what cell types are present, but where they are located and what they are doing.

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gene

Gene Therapy Exceeds Expectations in Treating Children’s Neurological Disease

03 April 2019

A gene therapy developed by the UK company Orchard Therapeutics has greatly improved the motor symptoms of children with an incurable neurological disease.

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heart fat balloon

Treating heart failure by targeting fat metabolism

01 April 2019

By burning fats and glucose, our hearts get the energy necessary to function well. Scientists at Ohio State University have identified a compound that’s key in fat metabolism but that diminishes when the heart becomes stressed. Restoring it could reduce the risk of heart failure, they found. 

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jawbone

Grow a better jawbone in your ribs

29 March 2019

The jawbone is not typically connected to the rib bone, but it might be in an emergency. Rice University bioengineers and their colleagues have developed a technique to grow live bone to repair craniofacial injuries by attaching a 3D-printed bioreactor — basically, a mold — to a rib.

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microsoft

Microsoft partners with biotech on ‘biological computing’ and cell DNA programming

27 March 2019

Microsoft aims to bring its coding skills to bear on biotech, with the goal of building an end-to-end platform for programming the biology of living cells to better produce new medicines and potentially materials that could be applicable to a range of industries.

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pollen

Shares Drop 40% as Allergy Therapeutics Announces Failed Phase III Trial

25 March 2019

Allergy Therapeutics has revealed that its immunotherapy for birch pollen allergy did not result in a significant symptom improvement when compared to a placebo.

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injection

Monthly Injection Proves as Good as Daily Pills Against HIV in Phase III

22 March 2019

Two phase III trials conducted by ViiV Healthcare have concluded that a monthly injection of two anti-HIV drugs is as effective as the standard daily treatment taken by people infected with HIV.

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dna

DNA and RNA Copying made easy

20 March 2019

Whether revealing a perpetrator with DNA evidence, diagnosing a pathogen, classifying a paleontological discovery, or determining paternity, the duplication of nucleic acids (amplification) is indispensable.

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stem cells knee

Stem Cells and Hydrogel Make Potential Osteoarthritis Treatment

18 March 2019

Scientists from the Netherlands have received a €600,000 grant to test a treatment for osteoarthritis in humans that combines hydrogels and stem cells to help the knee joint heal.

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rare disease blue

All Patients Survive in Cell Therapy Trial for Rare Genetic Disease

15 March 2019

All 20 patients with a rare immunodeficiency disease survived for at least two years after receiving a cell therapy developed by Orchard Therapeutics.

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Ipsen buyout

Ipsen strikes $1.3B Clementia buyout to boost rare disease unit

13 March 2019

Ipsen has struck a $1.3 billion (€1.1 billion) deal to buy Clementia Pharmaceuticals for its late-phase rare disease drug palovarotene. The transaction will see Ipsen hand over $1 billion upfront to acquire the retinoic acid receptor gamma agonist ahead of a filing for FDA approval.

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biotechnology genetic research

Swiss Scientists Find ‘Silver Bullet’ Against Bacterial Infections

11 March 2019

Using the gene editing tool CRISPR-Cas9, researchers in Lausanne have uncovered antimicrobial molecules in the fruit fly that can selectively kill certain bacteria. This could lead to new therapeutics combatting antimicrobial resistance, and even preventing infections before they start.

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biopharma

GE to sell its biopharma business to Danaher for $21.4B

08 March 2019

General Electric has moved to sell its growing biopharma manufacturing business to Danaher in a $21.4 billion deal, as the conglomerate looks to slim down its operations and pay off its lingering debt.

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biotechnology genetic research

Nitisinone increases melanin in people with albinism

06 March 2019

A small pilot clinical study at the National Eye Institute (NEI) suggests that the drug nitisinone increases melanin production in some people with oculocutaneous albinism type 1B (OCA-1B), a rare genetic disease that causes pale skin and hair and poor vision.

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Scientist with equipment and science expirements laboratory glassware

Researchers define cells used in bone repair

04 March 2019

Research led by Johns Hopkins investigators has uncovered the roles of two types of cells found in the vessel walls of fat tissue and described how these cells may help speed bone repair.

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a plastic brain in a lab

British Biotech Spin-Offs Get €40M Funding to Treat Narcolepsy

01 March 2019

Orexia and Inexia, two new virtual companies spun out of Sosei Heptares, will develop drugs for neurological diseases such as narcolepsy with funding from Medicxi Ventures.

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Experiments in the laboratory

Combo of Immunotherapy and Diabetes Drug Could Beat Breast Cancer

27 February 2019

A Finnish research group has combined two cancer drugs with the diabetes drug metformin, making mice with breast cancer survive for longer than when given the treatments individually.

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Test tubes closeup.medical glassware

How a decades-old HIV drug might help treat Alzheimer’s, age-related diseases

25 February 2019

Drugs that inhibit an enzyme called reverse transcriptase have been on the market for decades to treat HIV. Now a team led by Brown University scientists may have found another use for them—to treat age-related disorders, including Alzheimer’s.

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Entrepreneurs and business people conference in modern meeting room

Gossamer Bio pulls off $276M IPO to push a trio of programs through the clinic

22 February 2019

Late last month, Gossamer Bio filed to raise up to $230 million in a fixed-price IPO so it could go public despite the partial shutdown of the U.S. government. Now that the government has reopened, the San Diego biotech has returned to its original plan, pricing its traditional IPO at $276 million. 

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T Cells

Finding clues to a functional HIV cure

20 February 2019

George Mason University’s Yuntao Wu is the lead scientist on a research team that has identified a measurable indicator that could prove instrumental in the fight against HIV.

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Biotechnology

Anti-rejection drug rapamycin shows promise in liver cancer

18 February 2019

Scientists at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine were studying the cells that surround the liver’s central vein when they made a serendipitous discovery. Cells with a mutation in a gene called β-catenin also made high levels of the mTOR protein—a fault that they believe could promote the development of cancer.

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Ebola

New bat-borne virus related to Ebola

15 February 2019

Researchers from Singapore’s Duke-NUS Medical School, in collaboration with scientists in China, have identified and characterised a new genus of filovirus from a Rousettus bat in China. Their findings were published in the journal Nature Microbiology.

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Salmonella

Gene expression study sheds new light on African Salmonella

13 February 2019

Scientists at the University of Liverpool have taken another step forward in understanding the bacteria that are causing a devastating Salmonella epidemic currently killing around 400,000 people each year in sub-Saharan Africa.

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human

Topical Gene Therapy Shows Early Promise for Inherited Skin Disease

08 February 2019

A gene therapy applied to the skin, developed by UK company Amryt Pharma, showed positive preclinical results for the treatment of a rare genetic skin disease.  

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Gene-editing tool CRISPR repurposed to develop better antibiotics

06 February 2019

A University of Wisconsin-Madison researcher and his collaborators at the University of California, San Francisco have repurposed the gene-editing tool CRISPR to study which genes are targeted by particular antibiotics, providing clues on how to improve existing antibiotics or develop new ones.

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bacteria

A little squid sheds light on evolution with bacteria

04 February 2019

Bacteria, which are vital for the health of all animals, also played a major role in the evolution of animals and their tissues. In an effort to understand just how animals co-evolved with bacteria over time, researchers have turned to the Hawaiian bobtail squid, Euprymna scolopes.

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Clinical Research

The distance between pharmaceutical companies and Medical Specialists

31 January 2019

Interview with Rogier van Heijst

We spoke to Rogier van Heijst, an Advisor for pharmaceutical companies, to find out more regarding the distance between pharmaceutical companies and Medical Specialists. 

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dna Gene

Scientists provide new insight on how gene expression is controlled

28 January 2019

Researchers have provided new insight on the mechanism underlying the control of gene expression in all living organisms, according to a study published today in eLife.

The findings, first reported on bioRxiv, could ultimately improve our understanding of how certain antibacterial drugs work against the enzyme RNA polymerase (RNAP) in treating conditions such as Clostridium difficile infections and tuberculosis.

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tumor

Researchers uncover new mechanism of gene regulation involved in tumor progression

24 January 2019

Genes contain all the information needed for the functioning of cells, tissues, and organs in our body. Gene expression, meaning when and how are the genes being read and executed, is thoroughly regulated like an assembly line with several things happening one after another.

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Linda Dijkshoorn

How did I get to be CEO of a Biotech company?

21 January 2019

Blog written by Linda Dijkshoorn

I have always had a peculiar mind-set. When someone asks me if I can do something, even if I had never done it before, I always say ‘yes’. Because why not? I am a fast learner, and if I make a mistake, that is just human. I put my head down and try to master the skill as fast as possible. This allowed me to dream big.

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meningites

New bio inspired material interacts with surrounding tissues to promote wound healing

17 January 2019

Imperial researchers have developed new bio inspired material that interacts with surrounding tissues to promote healing.

Materials are widely used to help heal wounds: Collagen sponges help treat burns and pressure sores, and scaffold-like implants are used to repair bones. However, the process of tissue repair changes over time, so scientists are developing biomaterials that interact with tissues as healing takes place.

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biotechnology

The immune system’s fountain of youth

14 January 2019

If only we could keep our bodies young, healthy and energetic, even as we attain the wisdom of our years. New research at the Weizmann Institute of Science suggests this dream could be at least partly obtainable in the future.

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cancer cells

Stopping cancer from recruiting immune system double agents

10 January 2019

Cancerous tumors trick myeloid cells, an important part of the immune system, into perceiving them as a damaged part of the body; the tumors actually put myeloid cells to work helping them grow and metastasise (spread). A research team co-led by scientists at Rush University Medical Center have discovered a potential therapy that can disrupt this recruitment and abnormal function of myeloid cells in laboratory mice. The findings of their latest study were published on Dec. 19 in Nature Communications.

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Stem cells

French scientists find a weak spot in HIV-infected cells

07 January 2019

Researchers at the Institut Pasteur were able to selectively kill the cells where HIV hides from antiretroviral drugs, opening the way for a new form of HIV treatments.

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Cancer cells

Personalised Immunotherapy for Brain Cancer Succeeds in Clinical Trials

03 January 2019

A European trial has proved the feasibility and efficacy of treating cancer with a personalized immunotherapy tailored to each patient. The phase I/II trial, run across six European centers, tested a combination of two personalized vaccines in patients with glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer. 

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Future Pharma

The trends in the pharma industry

01 January 2019

Just like most industries, the biotechnological and pharmaceutical industry have gone through massive changes. Enormous amounts of R&D expenditures enables these industries to create and use things that were unthinkable a couple of years ago. But, what are these trends in the pharma industry?

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micriobiome

Gut microbiome regulates the intestinal immune system

31 December 2018

Scientist have long known that bacteria in the intestines, also known as the microbiome, perform a variety of useful functions for their hosts, such as breaking down dietary fiber in the digestive process and making vitamins K and B7

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science and medicine

A megadeal with Pfizer that could change the global healthcare

27 December 2018
  • The British pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline plans to combine its consumer-health business into a joint venture with its US rival Pfizer to create a medical superpower.
  • The deal could forge the largest provider of medicinal products sold directly to the public in the world.
  • The move means that GSK will split into two businesses going forward.
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On behalf of the Biotechnologycommunity, we would like to wish you a merry Christmas!

25 December 2018

christmas

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research

First line immunotherapy combination fails

24 December 2018

First line immunotherapy with durvalumab or the combination of durvalumab and tremelimumab does not improve overall survival in unselected patients with lung cancer, according to late breaking results from the MYSTIC trial presented at the ESMO Immuno-Oncology Congress.(1)

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tumor

Antibody Hitting Tumor Self-Destruct Button Passes Phase I

20 December 2018

A first-in-class antibody cancer treatment, from the French company Netris Pharma, has shown good safety and anti-tumor effects in a phase I trial in patients with advanced solid tumors.

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biotechnology

What does the largest biotech IPO ever mean for European biotech?

17 December 2018

With a massive €530M ($604M) raised, US-based Moderna has made a record biotech IPO. The news could give a significant boost to developers of messenger RNA, a technology that is still several years away from the market.

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brain

Effective new target for mood-boosting brain stimulation found

14 December 2018

Researchers have found an effective target in the brain for electrical stimulation to improve mood in people suffering from depression. As reported in the journal Current Biology on November 29, stimulation of a brain region called the lateral orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) reliably produced acute improvement in mood in patients who suffered from depression at the start of the study.

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Daniel Schneider: Photocure’s New CEO

10 December 2018

On September the 20th, Photocure, a company that focusses on improving lives of bladder cancer patients, announced that Daniel Schneider will be the new CEO, starting on November 1st. With his experience, Dan can bring Photocure to the next level. We asked Dan some questions to find out what his motives are, and what exactly he can bring to Photocure.

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sickle cell

Gene Therapies for Blood Disorders Marching Through the Clinic

07 December 2018

Gene therapy holds great potential as a cure for blood disorders such as hemophilia and sickle cell disease, which have limited treatment options.  This week, several gene therapy companies have released promising clinical trial results in hemophilia and sickle cell anemia.

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innovative technologies

Can Immunotherapy Offer New Hope for Parkinson’s Sufferers?

05 December 2018

Parkinson’s disease affects many people around the world, but effective treatments are proving elusive. Immunotherapy is being developed as a new treatment for the disease. I spoke to some experts in the field to find out just how promising the new therapies being developed are.

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VIB Logo

How does VIB contribute to establishing the Biotech hub in Flanders?

03 December 2018

Interview with Jerômé van Biervliet – Head of Business Development/Head of VIB Discovery Sciences – VIB

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3D Placenta

Long-Lasting Placenta Organoids Could Improve Pregnancy Research

02 December 2018

Researchers have made 3D placenta organoids from human cells that can last for over a year, improving over the current models to study disease in pregnancy and develop drugs. 

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Approved

Galapagos receives Fast Track designation from FDA for GLPG1972/S201086 in osteoarthritis

28 November 2018

Mechelen, Belgium; 27 November 2018, 22.01 CET – Galapagos NV (Euronext & NASDAQ: GLPG) announced that the FDA has granted GLPG1972/S201086 Fast Track designation for the treatment of patients with osteoarthritis (OA).

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Crispr

Genome-edited babies claim provokes international outcry

28 November 2018

A Chinese scientist claims to have helped make the world’s first genome-edited babies — twin girls, who were born this month. The announcement has provoked shock and outrage among scientists around the world.

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Ovarian Cancer

Therapy response prediction for cancer patients – VitroScan

28 November 2018

Interview with Willemijn Vader – Managing Director VitroScan

Personalised medicine is aimed for the treatment of patients with all kind of diseases.

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vaccine

Parkinson’s Disease Vaccine Shows Preclinical Promise

26 November 2018

The biotech company United Neuroscience has developed a candidate Parkinson’s disease vaccine that targets a protein linked to the condition.

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Venom

Scorpion venom to shuttle drugs into the brain

21 November 2018

The Peptides and Proteins lab at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona) has published a paper in Chemical Communications describing the capacity of a small molecule (peptide) derived from chlorotoxin, found in scorpion venom (Giant Yellow Israeli scorpion), to carry drugs across the blood-brain barrier (BBB).

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Partnership

AbbVie Enters Industry Collaboration to Fight Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease

19 November 2018

The UK biotech Mission Therapeutics has teamed up with AbbVie to develop new drugs to treat the neurodegenerative conditions Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.

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BiotechMeeting 22nd of November

14 November 2018

On Thursday the 22nd of November, the last BiotechMeeting of 2018 will take place. During this meeting, innovators will share their promising biomedical innovations and questions within the network of partners. We asked one of the organisers, Boris Polm from BiotechPartners, what people can expect during this event.

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Healthcare

Gap in research means millions living with long-term consequences of cancer

14 November 2018

Millions of people are living with the long-term consequences of cancer and its treatment, but currently there is very little research on the problems they face and how these can be tackled, according to the UK’s National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI).

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microscope

Cell behavior, once shrouded in mystery, is revealed in new light

12 November 2018

A cell’s behavior is as mysterious as a teenager’s mood swings. However, University of Missouri researchers are one step closer to understanding cell behavior, with the help of a specialized microscope.

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Vaccination

Fascination for Vaccination

06 November 2018

When it comes to receiving vaccines, there has been some discussion regarding this lately. Whether you open up a newspaper or turn on the TV, vaccines are the topic. The discussion is regarding the choice everybody has to make if they will receive the vaccines or not.

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HIV search

Virus detectives test whole-body scans in search of HIV’s hiding places

02 November 2018

Antiretroviral drugs have transformed HIV infection from a death sentence to a chronic condition for many people who carry the virus. But because HIV never truly leaves the body, the virus rebounds rapidly if patients stop taking the drugs for even a short time.

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Partnership

Digging deeper into strategic alliances

29 October 2018

When it comes to gathering information, the Internet continues to serve its purpose. You can find whatever you desire and more importantly you can gather it from good sources.

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Salary

How Much Salary Can You Expect in a Biotech Job?

26 October 2018

If you’re thinking of taking a job in biotech, you’re probably wondering how much you’ll be paid. Here’s what you can expect depending on how high in the ladder your new position is.
Salary is undoubtedly an important factor when searching for a new job position, so it’s important to know what you can expect.

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10X Genomics

10X Genomics Inc. Opens new European Headquarters in Leiden

24 October 2018

10X Genomics, a California-based company in the genomics area, has expanded to The Netherlands and opened their European Headquarters in Leiden. The Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA) and InnovationQuarter assisted 10X Genomics with their settlement at the Leiden Bio Science Park.

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startup

The 6 Best Biotech Startup Competitions

22 October 2018

If you are looking for an opportunity to pitch your startup, look no further. Here’s a guide to the key European events for biotech startup competitions.

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Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence aids automatic monitoring of single molecules in cells

19 October 2018

To understand the mechanisms by which molecules act in cells, or the effects of drugs on them, it would be ideal to be able to track individual molecules, including where in the cell they are located and what modifications they undergo when conditions in the cell change. However, this has proven difficult with existing technologies, particularly given the amount of time required to perform such monitoring.

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Elaine

Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare: What it can do for us?

17 October 2018

Blog by Elaine Lima da Souza

 We are living in the Age of Data. Everything is happening fast, and we are not able to keep following up with all information available. We need to be assisted by technology. Artificial Intelligence (AI) can help us to make a good use of all the data and to generate improvements in healthcare.

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Nobel Prize

This Year’s Nobel Prizes Highlight Advances in Biotechnology

15 October 2018

Immune system brakes, optical tweezers, and enzyme evolution. Three separate subjects that span this year’s Nobel Prizes in Physiology or Medicine, Physics and Chemistry. Despite the differences in theory, however, the diverse discoveries have one thing in common: they have applications in the biotechnology industry, Labiotech’s favorite subject.

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Itchy skin

Could treating psoriasis in the future be as easy as going online?

12 October 2018

For approximately 8 million Americans, visiting a doctor regularly is the key to managing their psoriasis, a chronic inflammatory skin condition characterised by itchy or painful red patches that can appear anywhere on the body. But for some people, seeing a specialist regularly can be a monumental challenge, especially for those who live in rural or underserved communities.

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Stem cells

Blood test detects early stage pancreatic cancer

10 October 2018

Pancreatic cancer is currently very difficult to detect while it is still resectable. A new blood test developed by researchers at Lund University in Sweden, Herlev Hospital, Knight Cancer Center and Immunovia AB, can detect pancreatic cancer in the very earliest stages of the disease.

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kidneys

Kidney Transplant Success Improved by Swedish Biotech’s Drug

08 October 2018

There is hope for many patients on the kidney transplant waiting list, as a Swedish biotech’s lead candidate drug could help reduce rejections in kidney transplant patients.

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Geneva

Alcon confirms commitment to Switzerland ahead of proposed spinoff from Novartis

05 October 2018

Alcon, the global leader in eye care and a division of Novartis, today announced plans to locate its future global headquarters in the Canton of Geneva, Switzerland, following completion of its proposed spinoff from Novartis. Alcon’s new global headquarters in Geneva will be the primary location for Alcon’s senior corporate leadership and other corporate and commercial functions. It will be co-located with Alcon’s Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) regional office, which is already based in the city. The new premises will be in a modern office complex offering world-class services and amenities, including close proximity to the Geneva international airport.

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HRM

Human Resource Management in the Pharma industry

03 October 2018

Industries are changing and developing, and so is the pharmaceutical industry. Not only the size of the industry, the expenditures and the techniques are changing, but also the Human Resource Management sector has gone through several changes over the past few years. We wanted to know more about these changes, and asked an expert, Leonard Polman, for his experiences and opinions on the developments.

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Funding

Argenx Attracts Huge €250M Investment Following Positive Phase II Trial

01 October 2018

Belgian biotech Argenx raised over €250M in public investment on the Nasdaq Stock Market after announcing positive Phase II results for its lead autoimmune drug candidate.

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Startup pitch

Check Out Europe’s Hottest Pitching Event for Startups!

28 September 2018

Last year Berlin, this year Copenhagen – No matter where in Europe, this is the best opportunity to meet the most inspiring biotech startups out there: The Startup Slam at BIO-Europe 2018!

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Organoids

New Experimental Models for Drug Screening

26 September 2018

Blog by  Elaine Lima de Souza, Ph.D.

Billions of dollars are spent in drug screening and development of new medicines. However, about 90% of the drugs fail when reaching phase 1 of the clinical trials or show unpredicted side effects. Therefore, efforts are needed to create new experimental models for drug screening.


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whole fat dairy

Whole fat dairy may protect from cardiovascular disease and stroke

24 September 2018

One of the commonest diet fads these days is choosing low fat dairy over whole fat milk and milk products. A new large study however, has now shown that full-fat dairy and dairy products may be more beneficial for the heart. The results of the study appeared in the latest issue of the journal The Lancet.

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TU Delft

TU Delft – iGEM

21 September 2018

Doping has been an issue for fair sports for many years. Lance Armstrong for example won the Tour the France seven times before he was caught for the use of doping. At the end of 2012 all these seven victories were taken. The cycling world was shocked.

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Lorin Raats

The ambiguity of authorship in scientific articles

19 September 2018

Lorin Raats, a Biotechnology Associate, gave his opinion as a reaction to an article in Nature. Read his reaction down below.

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Thousands of scientists publish a paper every five days

19 September 2018

To highlight uncertain norms in authorship, John P. A. Ioannidis, Richard Klavans and Kevin W. Boyack identified the most prolific scientists of recent years.

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Approved

The EMA Recommends the Approval of First Nanobody from Ablynx

19 September 2018

Update: The EMA has officially approved Cablivi for the treatment of adults with acquired thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura, following its earlier recommendation in June. The drug has also been accepted for priority review by the US FDA, with a decision due on 6 Feb 2019.

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Exercise

How exercise generates new neurons, improves cognition in Alzheimer’s mouse

17 September 2018

A study by a Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) research team finds that neurogenesis -inducing the production of new neurons — in the brain structure in which memories are encoded can improve cognitive function in a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease. Their investigation shows that those beneficial effects on cognition can be blocked by the hostile inflammatory environment present in the brain of patients with Alzheimer’s disease and that physical exercise can “clean up” the environment, allowing new nerve cells to survive and thrive and improving cognition in the Alzheimer’s mice.

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Microscopy

Electron microscopy provides new view of tiny virus with therapeutic potential

14 September 2018

The imaging method called cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) allows researchers to visualize the shapes of biological molecules with an unprecedented level of detail. Now, a team led by researchers from the Salk Institute and the University of Florida is reporting how they used cryo-EM to show the structure of a version of a virus called an AAV2, advancing the technique’s capabilities and the virus’ potential as a delivery vehicle for gene therapies. 

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Brexit

More Brexit Bad News: EMA Pulls Contracts Early From UK Regulatory Body

12 September 2018

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has pulled all contracts with the UK’s medical regulation body ahead of the UK withdrawing from the EU next year.

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Stem cells

Stems Cells Used as Delivery Truck for Brain Cancer Drugs

10 September 2018

Common brain cancers in children, such as medulloblastoma, have been notoriously difficult to treat therapeutically, with traditional interventions reliant on inefficient surgical techniques to remove the bulk of the cancerous tissue. However now, new data from the University of North Carolina (UNC) Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy may lead to a more effective way to treat these aggressive tumors.

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Nanoparticles

This Tiny Particle Might Change Millions of Lives

07 September 2018

Remember the scene in the movie Mission: Impossible when Tom Cruise has to sneak into the vault? He had to do all sorts of moves to avoid detection. That’s what it’s like to sneak a targeted drug into a kidney and keep it from getting eliminated from the body.

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Partnership

The 7 Do’s and Don’ts of Biotech Partnerships

05 September 2018

The question of whether to partner with another company is critical to the long-term development of a biotech. Nonetheless, it can be easy for a small company to underestimate the resources it needs to put into a successful collaboration. Here, we’ll go over some expert advice on what to do and what not to do to set up a partnership, keep it up and running and make it successful.

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Car-t

Update: Kite and Novartis’s CAR T-Cell Therapies Approved in Europe

03 September 2018

Update: Following on from earlier approvals in the US, the European Commission announced it has given marketing approval for both Kite’s Yescarta and Novartis’s Kymriah for treatment of patients with various forms of blood cancer.

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Blood cells

Researchers develop new way to detect cancer cells in the blood using malaria protein

31 August 2018

Cancer tumor cells in the blood can be more accurately and cheaply detected using a malaria protein, new research led by UNSW’s Chris Heeschen shows. 

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DNA

Synthetic DNA-based enzymes

29 August 2018

Enzymes perform very specific functions and require only little energy — which is why the biocatalysts are also of interest to the chemical industry. In a review article published in the journal Nature Reviews Chemistry, Professor Thomas Happe and Associate Professor Anja Hemschemeier from the Photobiotechnology work group at Ruhr-Universität Bochum have provided a summary on what is known about the mechanisms of enzymes in nature.

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Brain

Why some patients with brain markers for Alzheimer’s never develop the condition

27 August 2018

An intriguing new study has marked the beginning of the answer to a medical mystery: why is it that some people with classic markers for Alzheimer’s Disease never show any signs of dementia throughout their life?

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Vaccination

Pfizer Offers €374M for German mRNA Flu Vaccine

24 August 2018

BioNTech, based in Mainz, Germany, has entered into a partnership with Pfizer worth up to $425M (€374M) to develop an mRNA-based flu vaccine, which could be produced much more quickly than current flu vaccines.

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Cell lines

Researchers engineer three cell lines to produce nonproprietary versions of NISTmAb

22 August 2018

When the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) issued the world’s first standardized monoclonal antibody (mAb) in July 2016, the exhaustively analyzed protein known as NISTmAb (NIST Reference Material 8671) was intended as a valuable tool for biopharmaceutical companies.

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Brain

Genotype-Specific Microparticle Treatment for Brain Cancer

20 August 2018

Glioma, a type of brain cancer, is normally treated by removing as much of the tumor as possible, followed by radiation or chemotherapy. With this treatment, patients survive an average of about 10 years, but the tumors inevitably grow back. 

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Stem cells

Stem cell transplants to be used in treating Crohn’s disease

17 August 2018

A clinical trial has begun which will use stem cell transplants to grow a new immune system for people with untreatable Crohn’s disease – a painful and chronic intestinal disease which affects at least 115,000 people in the UK.

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Mosquito's

New study analyzes risk factors associated with mosquito-borne infectious diseases

15 August 2018

In one of the largest studies of its kind, researchers analyzed chikungunya and dengue outbreak data from 76 countries over a period of 50 years, focusing on regions across the Indian Ocean that are hard hit by these and other mosquito-borne infectious diseases.

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Car-t

Kite Partners with Dutch Biotech to Develop a New Form of CAR-T Therapy

13 August 2018

Kite will support Gadeta in the development of a new type of CAR-T therapy that could be more effective in solid tumors.

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Lungs

New Gene Therapy Could Treat Cystic Fibrosis With One Dose

10 August 2018

A new partnership in the UK will develop a gene therapy for cystic fibrosis that could treat the disease with a single dose.

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Gut bacteria

Gut bacteria may be important determinant of weight loss

08 August 2018

A preliminary study published in the August issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings suggests that, for some people, specific activities of gut bacteria may be responsible for their inability to lose weight, despite adherence to strict diet and exercise regimens.

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Brexit

EMA Temporarily Scales Back Activities to Prepare for Brexit

06 August 2018

As a result of Brexit, the European Medicines Agency will suspend some of its activities to prepare for staff cuts and its move from London to Amsterdam next year.

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Crispr

CRISPR-Cas9 Shown to Cause Previously Unseen DNA Damage

02 August 2018

Researchers at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in the UK have found that gene editing with CRISPR-Cas9 can cause significantly more off-target damage to the DNA than previously thought.

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Ebola

Promising new class of antibodies protects against HIV-1 infection

30 July 2018

A group of scientists at Texas Biomedical Research Institute have zeroed in on a new defense against HIV-1, the virus that causes AIDS.

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Artificial Intelligence

Insilico and A2A launch new Duchenne-focused AI drug company

26 July 2018

Two artificial intelligence-based drug design firms, Insilico Medicine and A2A Pharmaceuticals, have launched a new joint company aimed at developing small molecules for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and other rare orphan diseases.

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Corrie

Why do I work in the biotech industry?

09 July 2018

Corrie Kroeze, Senior MSL Manager at Celgene, explains us her reasons to work in the biotech industry. She started in this industry 29 years ago at Lorex Pharmaceutica (what is now known as Sanofi Genzyme) as a rep.

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Tobias Gladbach

From University to Grünenthal GmbH

06 July 2018

Recently, we spoke to Tobias Gladbach a passionate Biotechnologist, who recently attained his Master of Sciences degree and started working in the pharmaceutical industry at Grünenthal GmbH. We talked about his experiences and how he ended up in this industry.

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Cancer cells

Personalised cancer vaccine may increase long-term survival in patients with deadly brain cancer

03 July 2018

An international Phase III study led by researchers at UCLA and at Northwest Biotherapeutics, Inc. has found that a personalized glioblastoma vaccine may increase long-term survival in some patients. Nearly 30 percent of patients in the current trial have now survived at least three years post-enrollment, with patients continuing to be followed over time.

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personalised medicine1

Is personalised medicine of necessity?

01 July 2018

Within the pharmaceutical industry, many scientists dream of making medicines that are tailored to the needs and characteristics of an individual patient. Scientists believe that a personalised medicine would provide treatment with the highest possible safety and effectiveness. Moreover, personalised medicines would be cost-saving. However, the dream of these scientist have not come true, because of challenges they are facing. Do you think personalised medicine is essential?

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HIV

An HIV Cure by 2020? A Review of the Future of HIV Therapy

30 June 2018

HIV research has come a long way since the disease was discovered in the 1980’s. Antiretroviral therapy was a major milestone that has changed the lives of millions, but the goal now is to find an HIV cure before 2020. We’ve scanned the biotech industry to identify the most promising developments towards finding the cure.

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Pills

FDA chief: First-ever withdrawal drug could vault more patients into addiction therapy

26 June 2018

Patients who go off opioid painkillers face excruciating withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, nausea, vomiting, insomnia, muscle aches and more. Now, thanks to an FDA approval for US WorldMeds’ Lucemyra, they’ll have the first drug designed to fight those symptoms.

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Blood cells

Engineering Red Blood Cells to Fight the Most Severe Cancers

21 June 2018

Our very own red blood cells could soon become a treatment for some of the most severe forms of cancer; After a long journey of ups and downs, Erytech is now near the finish line to launch the first red blood cell therapy.

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Algorithms

Note to pharma: AI companies could use your help detailing doctors

18 June 2018

Artificial intelligence companies are coming up with all kinds of ways to help pharma improve clinical trials, zero in on which patients will benefit most from their drugs and go well beyond the pill. So how can pharma return the favor? By convincing reluctant doctors to jump on board, for starters.

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CRISPR

FDA Puts Clinical Trial for CRISPR Therapy on Hold

15 June 2018

The FDA has put a hold on CRISPR Therapeutics’ planned Phase I/II trial testing a CRISPR gene-editing therapy in patients with sickle cell disease, which will likely delay the use of CRISPR-based therapies in humans.

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Plant

Planting the Seeds to Grow the Italian Biotech Industry

12 June 2018

Many European countries, including the UK, France, Germany, and Switzerland, boast a thriving biotech industry. Others are still a step behind when it comes to industrialising their research. Let’s take a look at how Italy is pushing through to make it to the first league.  Italy is certainly a pioneer and leader in life science research — three of the gene and cell therapies approved in Europe come from Italian research. However, the country has not yet translated its strong science into a strong biotech industry. 

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Crohns

Microbiome Company Enters $534M Deal With Genentech To Develop Treatments for IBD

08 June 2018

UK biotech Microbiotica has entered into a multi-year collaboration with Genentech, one of the world’s first biotechs, to develop microbiome-based treatments for inflammatory bowel disease.

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biotech companies

The 5 best Biotech companies in Europe’s history

07 June 2018

The United States is where the biotech started back in the days. The biotech industry is rapidly growing nowadays and is one of Europe’s biggest employers. Europe has stepped up as a major competitor in the development of ever better technologies within the biotech industry. In Europe there are many upcoming companies and achievements within the biotech industry.

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Brexit

Brexit: the consequences for Biotech and pharma

05 June 2018

You cannot have missed it: Brexit. On March 29, 2019, the United Kingdom will officially leave the European Union. The results and follow up will take years. Many economists believe that the Brexit is likely to have a negative impact on the medium and long-term UK economy. But what are the consequences for biotech and pharma industry in Europe?

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the future

A CRISPR therapy future

04 June 2018

CRISPR was discovered in the early 1990s, and seven years later it was first used in biochemical experiments. CRISPR has rapidly become the most popular gene editing tool among researchers within the biotechnology industry, mainly in fields of microbiology, human biology, and agriculture. Over the past couple of years, CRISPR has been making headlines.

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Pharma

Most important drug inventions

02 June 2018

A lot of the drugs we have and use nowadays are considered as normal. However, over the past few decades these drugs were invented, and at the time, they were groundbreaking. To this day, these medicines are saving lives and making the lives of billions of people around the world a lot easier. Here are the most important drug inventions ever.

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tumor

Tumor-like spheres help scientists discover smarter cancer drugs

01 June 2018

Cancer is a disease often driven by mutations in genes. As researchers learn more about these genes, and the proteins they code for, they are seeking smarter drugs to target them. The ultimate goal is to find ways to stop cancer cells from multiplying out of control, thereby blocking the growth and spread of tumors.

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Pneumonia

Swiss Company Raises Ambitious IPO to Fight Antibiotic Resistance

28 May 2018

 

Polyphor has closed an IPO of CHF 165M (€138M) to continue developing a new class of antibiotics against pneumonia, as well as treatments for cystic fibrosis and breast cancer.

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