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Updated: 16 min 50 sec ago

Nektar unveils Inheris Biopharma, its new CNS-focused offshoot

51 min 6 sec ago
Nektar Therapeutics created Inheris Biopharma, a new subsidiary helmed by Merck veteran Jay Galeota that will focus on developing and marketing drugs for central nervous system disorders.

EuroBiotech Report—Novartis-GSK, Affimed U-turn, Amgen-Nuevolution, Roche and VC fund raises cash

4 hours 22 min ago
In this week's EuroBiotech Report, Novartis bests GSK in asthma trial, Affimed scraps T-cell engager program and Amgen inks Nuevolution buyout.

Miniature livers reveal behavior of common cancer-causing gene mutation

4 hours 29 min ago
Dutch researchers are using miniature livers, or “organoids,” the study the function of mutated genes in liver cancer. They've uncovered insight into the commonly mutated gene BAP1 that may explain how benign cells in the liver turn malignant.

EuroBiotech: More Articles of Note

4 hours 30 min ago
In our EuroBiotech roundup this week, Boehringer backs startup, Zealand delays filing plan and Scancell eyes cancer trial start.

Fountain Healthcare raises €118M for EU-focused fund

4 hours 34 min ago
Fountain Healthcare Partners has raised €118 million for its third life sciences fund. The transatlantic VC shop, which backed Inflazome and Kandy Therapeutics with its second fund, will pump most of the money into European biopharma and medtech companies.

Tonix boosts pipeline with Columbia University-developed cocaine intoxication drug

5 hours 31 min ago
Tonix Pharmaceuticals is getting into the addiction business, licensing a phase 2 treatment for cocaine intoxication from Columbia University. The company is planning to start a pivotal trial for the enzyme, which breaks down cocaine, in 2020.

Affimed scraps T-cell engager program, parts company with CSO

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 23:02
Affimed has terminated its phase 1 bispecific T-cell engager program seven months after the FDA hit it with a clinical hold. The action shifts Affimed’s focus to innate cell engagers that it plans to combine with other modalities to treat cancers.

That was fast: Ex-FDA commish goes back to biotech investing

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 21:42
Less than two months after stepping down as the FDA commissioner, Scott Gottlieb has slipped right back into his old ways, becoming "special partner" at his old life science venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates.

Locana bags $55M for RNA-targeting gene therapies

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 14:13
Locana, a biotech working on gene therapies that target RNA rather than DNA, raised $55 million to expand its platform and pipeline as well as to build out its leadership team. The company is taking aim at diseases caused by problems in RNA that stop cells from producing essential proteins.

Google’s cancer-spotting AI outperforms radiologists in reading lung CT scans

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 08:22
Google’s artificial intelligence development has reached a milestone in lung cancer imaging and prediction, with a CT scan model being able to diagnose cases as well as or better than a group of six radiologists.

Improving viral vectors for hemophilia gene therapies by tricking the immune system

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 08:05
The popular adeno-associated virus is frequently used as a vector to deliver gene therapy, but most people are immune to the virus, rendering the therapy ineffective. To bypass that mechanism, scientists in Italy have improved lentiviral vectors for hemophilia gene therapies and shown improved efficacy in monkeys.

Chugai ponies up $1B+ to combine R&D operations in Yokohama

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 07:22
Chugai Pharmaceuticals is shelling out ¥127.3 billion on a new R&D site in Yokohama, where it will combine the work of two long-standing research labs in nearby cities. It will start building the new facility this August.

Spire Health launches COPD study with its machine-washable wearable

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 06:33
Using an innovative wearable, Spire Health has launched a study to develop new digital biomarkers that can predict exacerbations—and potentially hospitalizations—in patients with severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Novartis' asthma triplet beats GSK's Advair in phase 2 trial

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 05:32
Novartis’ triple combination asthma candidate QVM149 has beaten GlaxoSmithKline’s Advair in a phase 2 trial. The study linked QVM149 to statistically significant improvements in lung function, leading Novartis to talk up its potential to improve outcomes in uncontrolled asthma. 

Amgen bids $167M to buy drug discovery shop Nuevolution

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 00:29
Amgen has offered $167 million to buy Nuevolution. The takeover will give Amgen control of a drug discovery platform that landed Nuevolution deals with leading companies plus a pipeline of early-stage cancer and inflammation programs.

Biotech builder ElevateBio reveals its first portfolio company: AlloVir

Tue, 05/21/2019 - 20:43
A week after launching with $150 million, ElevateBio is unveiling its first portfolio company: AlloVir, a biotech working on off-the-shelf cell therapies against several common viruses, including flu, respiratory syncytial virus and a type of herpes virus.

Novartis, Otsuka, Pfizer, Sanofi join Verily's Project Baseline

Tue, 05/21/2019 - 07:01
Novartis, Otsuka, Pfizer and Sanofi have signed onto Verily’s Project Baseline, a program aimed at mapping out a baseline for human health.

Ocular's sustained-release insert misses bull's-eye in phase 3 glaucoma trial

Tue, 05/21/2019 - 06:26
Ocular Therapeutix’s drug-eluting insert to treat glaucoma—a small, resorbable hydrogel plug that sits within the tear duct designed to replace 90 days’ worth of daily eye drops—fell just short of meeting the primary endpoint of its first pivotal phase 3 trial.

K2HV secures $400M to offer life science debt financing 

Tue, 05/21/2019 - 05:50
K2 HealthVentures has secured $400 million to support public and private companies in life sciences and healthcare. The East Coast investor will primarily provide debt financing to enable companies to reach milestones with minimal equity dilution.

Merck boosts late-phase cancer pipeline with $1.1B Peloton buy

Tue, 05/21/2019 - 05:15
Merck has struck a deal to buy Peloton Therapeutics for $1.1 billion upfront days before the biotech was due to list on Nasdaq. The deal will give Merck control of an experimental oral HIF-2α inhibitor that could challenge Keytruda for the metastatic renal cell carcinoma market.