weekly biotechnology news wrap up

July 7, 2017

July 7, 2017

This week’s headlines include: FDA outlines plan to speed rare disease drug designation, Glimmers of hope for cancer vaccines as two neoantigen shots hit the mark, Big pharma turns to AI to speed drug discovery, GSK signs deal, A huge win for biology’: Trial shows anti-inflammatory drugs may reduce heart disease, and Scientists are dusting off a long-forgotten weapon to cope with modern bacteria


Headlines:

“FDA outlines plan to speed rare disease drug designation,” Reuters

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration plans to reorganize its drug review staff and create a SWAT team to eliminate a backlog of requests for rare disease drug designation, it said on Thursday. The agency plans to deploy a team of senior reviewers with expertise in drugs to treat diseases with 200,000 patients or fewer, known as orphan drugs…”

“Glimmers of hope for cancer vaccines as two neoantigen shots hit the mark,” Fierce Biotech

“Efforts to develop effective, personalized cancer vaccines have been largely unsuccessful to date, but two phase 1 studies suggest the tide could be turning. The results in the journal Nature add to the hope that the vaccines—which are directed at patients’ specific cancer mutations—could be combined with immuno-oncology drugs such as checkpoint inhibitors and deliver a double whammy to tumors, removing a brake on the immune response while also directing it toward the cancer cells…”

“Big pharma turns to AI to speed drug discovery, GSK signs deal,” Reuters

“The world’s leading drug companies are turning to artificial intelligence to improve the hit-and-miss business of finding new medicines, with GlaxoSmithKline unveiling a new $43 million deal in the field on Sunday…”

“‘A huge win for biology’: Trial shows anti-inflammatory drugs may reduce heart disease,” The Boston Globe

“Could we see an explosion of new anti-inflammatory therapies for heart disease? Perhaps. That’s because Novartis may have just helped validate a long-standing theory: That targeting inflammation could play critical role in reducing the incidence of heart disease…”

“Scientists are dusting off a long-forgotten weapon to cope with modern bacteria,” The Washington Post

“In 1915, British scientist Frederick Twort saw something weird happening to the bacteria that had invaded his viral cultures: They were disappearing, a sign they had been destroyed. Two years later, French-Canadian microbiologist Félix d’ Hérelle observed the same phenomenon in his own lab…”

SUMMARY

Continuous multi-column chromatography (MCC) has been gaining increasing interest as an enabling bioprocessing technique that allows for increases in specific productivity (g/L/hr) and operating binding capacity (g mAb/L sorbent) over traditional batch solutions. With recent advances, users have reported an increase in cost savings stemming from reduced resin volumes, lower buffer consumption, and increased resin usage.

Mark Pagkaliwangan presents on July 18th at 1PM EDT, with David Johnson moderating, as they discuss MCC solution advances with processes utilizing two columns or more. They will explore how the total number of columns used in a process can affect performance, and how titer and flowrate can be optimized with more columns for greater efficiency and productivity.

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