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Norway leading the pack in cancer

08.03.2012

With a bold approach, including next-generation DNA sequencing (NGS) and state-of-the-art biobanking systems, Norway is pushing forward personalised cancer treatments in its national health care system. Clinical-quality genome sequencing still isn’t widely used yet, but the country has already begun tracking every patient diagnosed with carcinoma. In mid-February, the Research Council of Norway launched a new programme to couple analysis results with data from health surveys and registers. “The main objective of the programme is to develop research-based knowledge about human health and disease through better use of human biobanks and health data as unique resources,” said Rolf Bergen, who chairs the programme. Norway has a head start in using NGS to look for tumour mutations in the clinic. Projects underway in the UK and elsewhere still use conventional genetic testing, but that might change soon. China’s BGI, the world’s largest genomics centre, has opened its first European Genome Research subsidiary in Copenhagen (Denmark). Kicked off at the beginning of February, the institute is the cornerstone of a collaboration between BGI and top Danish research institutes. “The vision is to create the best facilities in the field for genomics and bioinformatics,” said Thomas Bjønholm from the University of Copenhagen, who wants to begin development on a vaccine against cancer.

Politics / Law

06.03.2012

The human race is at war with another species, and has been for thousands of years. Each of us in Europe swats dead dozens of the enemy every summer, and in the tropics they kill thousands of people with infectious diseases...

Tech Review

06.03.2012

The Philogen group is a specialist for therapies against cancer. Unlike other private companies, the Swiss-Italian firm has developed a rich pipeline of antibodies consisting of five different molecules being tested in 15...

Tech Review

06.03.2012

Success in the biopharmaceutical industry is mainly driven by the ability to innovate, and the continuous development of new products is crucial in that context. Shortening development times is key. The use of comprehensive...

Tech Review

06.03.2012

Zurich-based NeurImmune AG follows unconventional routes – for example, the company doesn’t rely on VC investors. And Neurimmune has also turned the drug discovery process upside down by taking its drug candidates from healthy...

Tech Review

06.03.2012

The use of bispecific antibodies recognising two different targets may allow improvement of clinical efficacy. A bispecific antibody for two growth factors that stimulate the formation of blood vessels – Ang2 (Angiopoietin-2) and...

Clinical Trial

02.03.2012

Sweden’s Karo Bio AB has been hit hard by toxicity issues with its lead compound eprotirome. The anti-cholesterol drug – which was in Phase III clinical development – proved unsafe in a long-term animal tests. The drug lead to...

Clinical Trial

01.03.2012

Inspiration Biopharmaceuticals Inc. reported on 22 February that its lead candidate drug proved successful in a clinical trial involving 12 patients who suffer from hemophilia B. The results were presented at the 5th Annual EAHAD...

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