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December 21, 2012
In avoiding the fiscal cliff, Congress shouldn't cut the programs that are vital to health of our nation. Read about the impact of these programs on BIOtechNOW.

The news summaries appearing in BIO SmartBrief are based on original information from news organizations and are produced by SmartBrief, Inc., an independent e-mail newsletter publisher. The information is not compiled or summarized by BIO. Questions and comments should be directed to SmartBrief at bio@smartbrief.com.

  Today's Top Story 
  • M&A may be an outcome but shouldn't be a startup strategy
    Young biotech companies should not plan either to be acquired or to stand alone but instead should concentrate on building value that gives investors an appropriate return, writes former Avila Therapeutics CEO Katrine Bosley. Young biotechs should plan for and determine how to get one or more new drugs to market and reimbursed, she writes. Such a strategy attracts capital and allows flexibility in whether to allow an acquisition or go it alone in the IPO market, she writes. Xconomy (12/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Health Care & Policy 
  • Shire, Arrowhead unite to develop peptide-drug conjugates
    Arrowhead Research granted Shire the rights to use its human-derived Homing Peptide technology to develop and market peptide-drug conjugates. "With this novel platform technology, Shire has the potential to move into a wider range of orphan diseases," said Philip J. Vickers, head of R&D at Shire Human Genetic Therapies. Arrowhead will get research funds plus up to $32.8 million in milestone fees per candidate. Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (12/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Va. biotech plans to expand headquarters, hire more workers
    Health Diagnostics Laboratory plans to invest about $24 million to expand its 112,000-square-foot headquarters at the Virginia Biotechnology Research Park in Richmond, Va. The six-story building is under construction, but the firm already submitted a development plan to add 100,000 square feet. The expansion is expected to bring the hiring of 400 new workers over the next two years. RichmondBizSense.com (Va.) (12/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Gene therapy may boost life expectancy in rare brain disorder
    An experimental gene therapy in which healthy genes were inserted into patients' brain cells via a virus to produce the enzyme aspartoacylase extended the lives of children with a rare brain disorder called Canavan disease, a study showed. The treatment slowed down the degeneration of brain tissues and improved the quality of life of the children with fewer seizures, better sleep quality, and more mobility and alertness. The findings appear in the journal Science Translational Medicine. Bloomberg Businessweek (12/19), U.S. News & World Report/HealthDay News (12/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Company & Financial News 
  • Funding round brings in $75M for Ultragenyx
    Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical secured $75 million in a Series B funding round and will use the money to further develop its lead drug candidates, UX001 and UX003. UX001 is being developed as a replacement therapy for hereditary inclusion body myopathy, while UX003 is an experimental enzyme replacement therapy for mucopolysaccharidosis type 7. North Bay Business Journal (Santa Rosa, Calif.) (12/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Regado Biosciences raises $51M for anticoagulant trial
    Regado Biosciences will advance Phase III trials of its anticoagulant REG1 using $51 million raised in a Series E round of financing. The trials will test the drug's efficacy in managing bleeding in coronary angioplasty procedures. The company is also aiming for a parallel indication for the drug in open heart surgery. MedCityNews.com (12/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Food & Agriculture 
  • World Wide Fund for Nature VP backs use of biotech crops
    Adoption of biotech crops and intensive agriculture can help meet the world's food demands, while protecting the environment, said Jason Clay, senior vice president for market transformation at World Wide Fund for Nature. "The productivity of land will need to increase dramatically while at the same time waste production and the burden on the environment will need to fall," Clay said. "I'm convinced that modern genetic technology could help get better yields from local and regional crops in Africa and Southeast Asia," he added. Horticulture Week (U.K.) (12/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Industrial & Environmental 
  • Consortium gets $263M EU grant for Dutch biorefinery project
    A consortium involving BioMCN, Siemens, Linde and Visser & Smit Hanab has received a $263 million grant to further the development of a biorefinery in the Netherlands. The grant was administered by NER300, a funding program managed by the European Commission, the European Investment Bank and EU member states. The proposed biorefinery is slated to convert wood residue into chemicals and fuels. Biofuels-News.com (U.K.) (12/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  SmartQuote 
How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives."
--Annie Dillard,
American author


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