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    Deep Dive

    After a record run, fewer biotechs are going public. Here’s how they’re performing.

    Prime Medicine became the first gene editing company to seek an IPO in 2022 and could be the first to go public since Caribou Biosciences last July. 

    Updated Sept. 26, 2022
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    Sponsored by Medscape

    Health equity: the current environment and a path to improvement

    Over the last 2 years, a greater spotlight has shone on inequalities in health care, and the greater need to improve health equity.

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    J&J’s consumer health spinout to be named Kenvue

    The planned split is a major shakeup for the world’s largest drugmaker and one of the most familiar corporate brands. The new company will sell well-known products like Tylenol and Band-Aids.

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    Roche pays $70M in another bid to catch up on cancer cell therapies

    Rival companies have set a standard in lymphoma and leukemia. Now the Swiss drugmaker wants to be a pioneer in cell treatments for solid tumors.

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    Courtesy of Scribe Therapeutics

    Sanofi partners with Scribe to gain gene editing tools for cell therapy work

    The California biotech will receive $25 million upfront from Sanofi, which plans to use Scribe’s platform to edit natural killer cells for cancer treatment.

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    Biogen to pay $900M to settle lawsuit over MS drug outreach

    A former Biogen employee sued in 2012, alleging the company paid physician fees to encourage prescribing of its drugs. Biogen did not admit wrongdoing as part of the settlement.

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    Adeline Kon/BioPharma Dive
    Deep Dive

    Biotech M&A is picking back up. Here are the latest deals.

    Rocket Pharmaceuticals’ acquisition of Renovacor is the 12th biotech company buyout valued over $50 million so far this quarter and part of a pickup in dealmaking activity. 

    Updated Sept. 20, 2022
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    GSK names Julie Brown, former Burberry executive, its first female CFO

    The U.K. drugmaker now also stands to become the first big pharmaceutical company to have women in its top two roles, with the transition planned for May 2023.

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    Seagen, amid deal rumors, spends $50M on a dual-targeting cancer drug

    While a long-rumored acquisition by Merck & Co. still hasn’t materialized, Seagen is forging ahead with a deal of its own, grabbing rights to a bispecific antibody drug from Lava Therapeutics. 

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    Courtesy of Pfizer

    Pfizer, BioNTech seek FDA clearance for updated COVID-19 booster in children

    The request, if cleared, would make U.S. kids between 5 through 11 eligible to receive a "bivalent" shot targeting components of the omicron variants currently circulating. 

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    Sarah Silbiger via Getty Images

    FDA advisers back microbiota-based treatment for gut infection

    Committee members voted in support of Rebiotix’s treatment for recurrent C. diff infections of the intestines, a condition with no approved options after antibiotics fail.

    Updated Sept. 23, 2022
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    Joe Raedle / Getty via Getty Images

    FDA user fee package to be included in bill to fund government, avoid shutdown, senators say

    A “practically clean” version of the bill will allow the FDA to continue its review and testing programs, while leaving more ambitious goals to be dealt with in a funding bill later this year.

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    AstraZeneca gives up on Ionis’ RNA drug for heart disease

    The British drugmaker decided the medicine, which works similarly to Novartis’s Leqvio, wasn’t potent enough to justify further testing. 

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    Pfizer, Sangamo set to resume gene therapy study after safety delay

    Concerns over blood clotting risk had derailed testing of the hemophilia treatment last year, leading the companies to adjust their trial protocol.

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    GSK buys into Spero’s comeback plan

    The British drugmaker is investing in Spero Therapeutics and acquiring most of the rights to an oral antibiotic the FDA previously rejected, but could approve if it succeeds in a new Phase 3 trial.

  • Lilly drug wins FDA clearance for gene-mutated solid tumors, regardless of type

    The approval is another example of so-called tissue-agnostic indications, which are based on a cancer’s genetic signature rather than where it is in the body.

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    Servier cuts ties with Allogene, ending complex CAR-T partnership

    The French drugmaker terminated a nearly decade-old deal that helped Allogene emerge as the sector's largest "off-the-shelf" cell therapy developer.

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    Novartis warns of sales hit after federal court turns back patent appeal

    The Swiss company is evaluating “all available options” following the ruling, which could lead to the launch of copycat versions of its MS drug Gilenya.

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    Emerging biotech

    Cell therapy startup Carisma merges with troubled Sesen in bid for Wall Street

    The deal results from a strategic review Sesen, formerly known as Eleven Biotherapeutics, undertook after the FDA rejected its top drug last year. 

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    Courtesy of University of Copenhagen

    Foundation behind Novo Nordisk to invest $200M in building quantum research ‘powerhouse’

    The grant is one of the Novo Nordisk Foundation’s largest and will fund a 12-year research collaboration to construct a quantum computer dedicated to the life sciences.

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    mady70 via Getty Images

    Fennec wins approval of first drug for chemotherapy-induced hearing loss in children

    The drug, Pedmark, has been in development for more than two decades and was previously rejected twice by U.S. regulators. 

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    Stock via Getty Images

    Rocket gives struggling gene therapy company a lifeline after SPAC merger

    Rocket is acquiring Renovacor at a roughly 75% discount to its public debut price last year, when it became one of dozens of biotechs to merge with a blank check company, or SPAC. 

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    Kena Betancur via Getty Images

    Merck to resume testing of closely watched HIV drug, but at lower dose

    Safety concerns had derailed a slate of studies involving the drug, called islatravir, last fall. A partial FDA hold remains on any study using a higher dose.

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    Mario Tama via Getty Images

    J&J opens new research hub near San Francisco

    The roughly 200,000-square-foot facility will house about 400 employees and more than double the size of the drugmaker’s presence in San Francisco.

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    gorodenkoff via Getty Images
    Emerging biotech

    Vesalius Therapeutics, a buzzy, Flagship-backed startup, cuts jobs six months after public launch

    When the company debuted in March, it announced plans to hire 200 employees over two years. Now, it’s laid off nearly half its staff in a year when the biotech sector has experienced a sharp market downturn.

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    Permission granted by Bluebird bio

    Back-to-back gene therapy approvals give Bluebird shot at survival

    The FDA’s clearances of Zynteglo and Skysona are a boost to Bluebird, and could help lift the research field after a series of setbacks. But selling the high-priced therapies will be a challenge.