Sanofi is betting the genetic technology behind the fast development of two highly effective coronavirus shots last year will lead to vaccines for other viruses as well as drugs for diseases of the lung and liver, announcing Tuesday a deal to buy research partner Translate Bio for $3.2 billion.
The acquisition is the latest sign large pharmaceutical companies view messenger RNA, which BioNTech and Moderna used to create the COVID-19 vaccines now cleared for use in dozens of countries, as a crucial drugmaking platform.
Pfizer partnered with BioNTech early on in the pandemic and aims to develop mRNA vaccines for other infectious diseases, beginning with influenza. GlaxoSmithKline is working with German mRNA specialist CureVac, while the executive chairman of Novartis recently said his company was considering investment in the technology, too. READ MORE
by Ned Pagliarulo
Big Pharma has long seen the potential for AI and machine learning to accelerate drug development. But Novo Nordisk is going a step further by channeling $200 million toward the creation of a computer that will outrun anything in existence.
Current methods for diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease rely on a complex combination of self- and caregiver-reported symptoms, a physical examination and either a PET scan or a spinal tap to look for evidence of amyloid plaque build-ups in the brain. But a new artificial intelligence-based method may make the diagnostic process a much more objective one.
There is lots of talk about diversity and inclusion in business, including in pharma and medtech. A new report by the Open Political Economy Network (OPEN), a think tank focusing on migration and diversity, released its “Minority Businesses Matter: Europe” report highlighting the successes and challenges of ethnic minority-owned businesses in Europe.