Sat.Jan 30, 2021 - Fri.Feb 05, 2021

Bristol Myers finally wins FDA approval for cancer cell therapy

Bio Pharma Dive

Delays tied to factory inspections had pushed an FDA decision on Breyanzi past a key deadline, allowing Bristol Myers to avoid paying billions of dollars in payouts to investors

Pharma’s horrible website metrics

World of DTC Marketing

SUMMARY: The number of visitors to your website doesn’t mean anything if you have high bounce rates and low page views/time on site. More than half of mobile users leave a website that takes more than three seconds to load, yet too many pharma sites are not optimized for mobile.

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Origami with DNA

Scienmag

A team at TU Wien was able to answer important questions about the immune system – with a trick reminiscent of paper folding. Credit: TU Wien T-cells are an important component of our immune system: with the receptors they carry on their surface, they can recognise highly specific antigens.

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White paper reveals pathway for digital therapeutics use in Italy

Pharma Phorum

A white paper has outlined a pathway that could allow Italy to realise the potential of digital therapeutics (DTx). The official journal of the Smith Kline Foundation, Tendenze Nuove, has published the paper entitled “Digital Therapeutics, an Opportunity for Italy” earlier this month.

Gilead partners with a cancer biotech, seeking to develop an HIV immunotherapy

Bio Pharma Dive

Gritstone Oncology, known for its cancer research, is drawing attention in infectious disease, signing a deal with Gilead two weeks after announcing plans to develop a coronavirus vaccine

The biggest threat to the pharma industry

World of DTC Marketing

SUMMARY: The biggest threat to the pharma industry isn’t the coming tsunami of healthcare changes. It’s reshaping the company to once again focus on patients instead of profits.

Researchers find peptide that treats, prevents killer citrus disease

Scienmag

Treatment causes deadly bacterium to leak and die Credit: Hailing Jin/UCR New research affirms a unique peptide found in an Australian plant can destroy the No. 1 killer of citrus trees worldwide and help prevent infection.

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Biogen laser-focused on Alzheimer's drug as rest of business falters

Bio Pharma Dive

While the biotech prepares to launch aducanumab, its latest earnings report shows significant hits to top-selling drugs, plus another pipeline failure

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Pharma throwing money away on digital ads

World of DTC Marketing

SUMMARY: Digital ad spend in pharmaceutical brands is up 111% so far in 2020 and 80% of that money is being thrown away by fraud and the popularity of programmatic advertising. While popular, digital advertising wasn’t an immediate hit in the pharmaceuticals arena due to the strict regulations.

Drug ‘breakthrough’ gives longest-ever survival in nonresectable liver cancer patients

Scienmag

The IMbrave150 trial found median overall survival was 19.2 months in patients treated with atezo+bev vs 13.4 months for those treated with sorafenib alone, the current standard treatment Credit: EASL 6 February: The IMbrave150 trial found median overall survival was 19.2

McKinsey Settles for $573 Million Over Role in Opioid Crisis

NY Times

The consulting firm has reached the agreement with 47 states because of its advice to drugmakers, including Purdue Pharma, the manufacturer of OxyContin.

Ken Frazier to step down as Merck CEO

Bio Pharma Dive

Frazier, who's retiring after a three-decade career at Merck, will hand the reins to CFO Robert Davis at the end of June. While Frazier's tenure was framed by the success of Keytruda, his leadership extended far beyond Merck's walls

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Katie Porter attacks pharma

World of DTC Marketing

SUMMARY: “How big pharma takeovers destroy innovation” a report from Congresswoman Porter does make some points. Still, she is missing a lot of facts at a time when hospital and health insurance costs are soaring.

Ural Federal University scientists discover ways to increase oil production efficiency

Scienmag

The article “Instability of the fluid interface at arbitrary perturbation amplitudes.

FDA Hit Record Drug and Biologic Approvals in 2020, Despite Ongoing Pandemic

BioSpace

For the pharmaceutical industry, the lack of face-to-face meetings caused the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to implement regulatory workarounds to stay on top of drug and biologics approvals

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Bayer agrees to help CureVac produce coronavirus vaccine

Bio Pharma Dive

Already a partner on the shot's development, Bayer will chip in on manufacturing too, pledging to make 160 million doses in 2022

Thursday pharma headlines

World of DTC Marketing

SUMMARY: The industry is facing several challenges on several fronts. Amgen is laying off people because of their poor financial outlook. Merck’s old drugs are under more scrutiny, and anti-vaxxers are causing problems by cherry-picking unreliable information.

$4 million grant will help teach computer coding skills to rural Missouri students

Scienmag

MU’s eMINTS National Center earns grant to help advance STEM education in underserved Missouri school districts Credit: MU College of Education COLUMBIA, Mo.

Webinar Recap – Video, Voice, and Virtual: Applying New Digital Technology to Enhance Customer Experience with PMN

Pharma Marketing Network

Moderator and Panelists: Amy Turnquist , EVP, Digital, eHealthcare Solutions (Moderator). Ryan Billings , U.S. Oncology Digital Marketing & Customer Experience at GSK. Desiree Priestley , Director, Patient Support Strategy & Insights at Otsuka America Pharmaceutical.

J&J asks FDA for emergency clearance of coronavirus vaccine

Bio Pharma Dive

With J&J's application filed, the FDA will start reviewing study results which the company says show its shot to be 66% effective against moderate or severe COVID-19

Why can’t pharma unite to fight common complaint

World of DTC Marketing

SUMMARY: The biggest argument against pharma is the cost of prescription drugs. Pharma could do something about this by simply uniting to make it easier for patients who can’t afford their medications to get them free or at little cost.

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Scientists extract pigments from algae for food supplements

Scienmag

Top 60 U.S. Brand Name Drug Prices are 75% Lower Internationally, According to Rand Corporation Study

Pharmacy Checkers

Original post found on PharmacyChecker.com. The Rand Corporation has released an impressive study showing that brand name drugs cost far more in the United States than in other countries – on average 344% more.

Breaking down the barriers to decentralized trials

Bio Pharma Dive

Decentralized trials are here to stay. Here's how technology has and will continue to pave the way

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Digital health exploding but dangers persist

World of DTC Marketing

SUMMARY : DigitalHealth.com, a British website, had a fascinating look at the use of health apps during the pandemic. Among their findings: Downloads of apps supporting consumers with mental health needs increased by nearly 200% from summer 2019 to summer 2020 Downloads of those supporting consumers with diets and weight loss rose by a massive 1294% from mid-2019 to mid-2020. Some may see this as a good sign but we need to proceed with caution.

Holonyak lab team creates fast, cheap, accessible COVID-19 antibody test

Scienmag

Credit: The Grainger College of Engineering As the numbers of those infected with COVID-19 has continued to climb, the desperate need for a vaccine was apparent. Even now with the invention and administration of several COVID-19 vaccinations, the question remains: How effective are these vaccines?

Israel’s Vaccination Results Point a Way Out of Virus Pandemic

NY Times

Covid cases fell dramatically and quickly among people who were vaccinated, Israeli studies found. It’s the strongest evidence yet that a robust vaccination program can tame the pandemic.

With $588M IPO, Sana leads wave of new biotechs going public

Bio Pharma Dive

Nine other drug developers are set to price initial public offerings this week, extending a record run of financing activity from last year. Sana's is one of the largest in history

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New Study Shows How SARS-CoV-2 Evolves Into New, Antibody-Evading Variants

BioSpace

A new study report in Science suggests SARS-CoV-2 and its mutated new variants can evade immune responses via the selective deletion of small sections of the virus’s genetic sequence

Switching nanolight on and off

Scienmag

Columbia researchers discover a new way to program light on an ultra-small scale Credit: Ella Maru Studio A team of researchers led by Columbia University has developed a unique platform to program a layered crystal, producing imaging capabilities beyond common limits on demand.

Almirall, Happify partner on digital tool for psoriasis mental health

Pharma Phorum

It’s well recognised that people with psoriasis can develop depression or anxiety, particularly in moderate or severe cases where a sizeable part of the body can have skin lesions.

Shifting strategy, Coherus buys rights to experimental cancer drug

Bio Pharma Dive

The biosimilar maker will develop an immunotherapy rival to Merck's Keytruda via a deal with China's Junshi Biosciences

A Miracle Cure for COVID-19? We’ve Heard That One Before

BioSpace

On the other hand, when dealing with a novel coronavirus, a certain amount of speed and urgency is necessary. Professor Chris Molloy, Chief Executive Officer of the U.K,’s s Medicines Discovery Catapult, told BioSpace that real-time data should be considered, with a different lens applied

Dishing up 3D printed food, one tasty printout at a time

Scienmag

As Virus Variants Spread, ‘No One Is Safe Until Everyone Is Safe’

NY Times

Rich countries are cornering the market on coronavirus vaccines, leaving poorer regions as potential breeding grounds for variants, like one found in South Africa, that could make vaccines less effective.

PTC aims again for FDA review of Duchenne drug despite latest miss

Bio Pharma Dive

The FDA has rejected PTC's treatment three times, but the biotech's CEO hopes the "totality" of the results it's now accrued will finally lead to a different outcome

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GSK and CureVac Take Aim at COVID-19 Variants with Second-Generation mRNA Vaccine

BioSpace

The collaboration is valued at €150 million (approximately $180 million). The two companies already have a history of working together