29.10.2012 - It is a significant upgrade for Italian basic research: British-Swiss Shire collaborates with Telethon Foundation on rare disease drugs.
It is a company first for British Shire Pharmaceuticals plc. Despite having had strong ties with academia for a while, the pharma firm has also finally partnered up in a public-private partnership (PPP) with an academic institution for the first time. Last week Swiss Shire Human Genetic Therapies – Shire’s stock corporation from Nyons – and Italian Telethon Foundation entered a long-term collaboration in discovering new medicines against rare diseases. In particular, Shire will spend over the next five years €17m on research on 13 mainly undisclosed indications. The only thing known is that a number of different lysosomal storage disorders and neurodegenerative disorders are among them. With this long-term collaboration, the British hope to boost their early stage pipeline. The terms for Shire picking up a ripening project and eventually bringing it through mid and late clinical stages are still under discussion.
Telethon general manager Francesca Pasinelli underscored the importance of the deal for her foundation: „For a not-for-profit organisation like ours, this alliance represents an opportunity to fulfil the promise made to patients and donors who have been supporting us.“ Most of the research will be carried out at the Telethon Institute of Genetics and Medicine (TIGEM) in Naples. The institute’s research strength lies in gene therapeutics.
Earlier this year Shire launched another early-stage programme together with zinc-finger-technology torchbearer Sangamo Bioscience (tackling haemophilia). While Shire now enters virgin soil with a public-private partnership, Telethon already has some experience in this respect. Since 2010 the foundation – together with GlaxoSmithKline – has been developing a gene therapy for the devastating immune deficiency ADA-SCID.
05.02.2016 It is not yet clear why a man died during a first-in-man clinical trial in January. However, a preliminary report found several “major shortcomings” by responsible CRO Biotrial. However, all regulations were complied with.
04.02.2016 After having dodged multiple takeover attempts by Monsanto last year, agrobusiness giant Syngenta has now agreed to be acquired by chemical corporation ChemChina. The Swiss company also announced plans to go public within a few years.
01.02.2016 Altering human DNA with the efficient gene editing method CRISPR/Cas9, especially germline modifications, was long considered a taboo. Now, however, UK scientists have received official approval to tinker with embryo DNA.
27.01.2016 Three UK universities have teamed up with three pharma companies to create the Apollo Therapeutics Fund. With the tech transfer fund, the consortium aims to develop scientific research into medicines.
25.01.2016 Affimed means to put a promising drug combination to the test. With support from MSD, the German biopharma will carry out clinical trials for an immunotherapy combining treatments of both companies.
21.01.2016 Stop squandering antibiotics and make research profitable again: at the World Economic Forum in Swiss Davos, 83 pharmaceutical companies have called for a unified approach towards the threat of antimicrobial resistance.