The Dish’s Weekly News Wrap Up – April 11, 2014

This week’s headlines include, big pharma is working together to discover cancer treatments, Stem Cell Research news, Amgen ends marketing agreement with GSK, study finds less research conducted on diseases of the poor, and H5N1 needs only five mutations to spread in humans.

Cell Culture Events


“FDA Grants Breakthrough Therapy Designation to Novartis Meningitis B Vaccine,” Forbes

“Novartis AG in Basel announced early this morning that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has granted Breakthrough Therapy Designation– a rapid development track – for potential approval of Bexsero®, their innovative vaccine against type B meningococcal meningitis. Bexsero® is a four-component vaccine (called 4CMenB) that’s currently approved in Europe, Canada and Australia. It was deployed last year for outbreaks at Princeton University and the University of California, Santa Barbara under an Investigational New Drug application to combat meningitis B cases.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled Troubleshooting Media Development for Bioprocessing”

“To Spark Cancer Discoveries, Several Big Pharma Companies are Sharing Idle Clinical Trial Data,” Med City News

“Big Pharma spends billions of dollars each year researching, developing and testing new treatments for cancer. In the meantime, it’s also collecting millions of data points that figuratively sit on a shelf and collect dust once a clinical trial is complete. A consortium of Big Pharma companies and research organizations are attempting to give that raw data a second life by making it available to researchers on the new Project Data Sphere platform. The not-for-profit PDS initiative was designed to be a single place where the cancer research community can share and analyze data. Specifically, it’s housing de-identified, patient-level data from late-stage comparative studies.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Biologics Still on Top in Best Selling Drugs of 2013

“Amgen Ends Marketing Agreement with GSK for Osteoporosis Drug,” Reuters

“Amgen Inc said it would end an agreement with GlaxoSmithKline Plc for the marketing of its osteoporosis drug in some regions outside the United States. Amgen said it would take over the marketing of the drug, sold under the brand name Prolia, in most areas under the agreement, including the European Union, Switzerland, Norway, Russia and Mexico, by Dec. 31.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled Paper or Plastic: A Study on Single-Use and Sustainability

“Study: Fewer Clinical Trials, Less Animal Research Conducted on Diseases of the Poor,” Fierce Biotech Research

“An analysis of nearly 4 million scientific articles has found that drug and disease research is disproportionately focused on medical conditions that predominantly afflict wealthy nations–such as diabetes, cancer and skin diseases–while less attention is given to diseases that burden developing countries. “Our study demonstrates that health research follows the market, but likely not just because of the market,” said lead author James Evans, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Chicago, in a statement. “Countries want to fund research that burdens their populations. Where this leads to inequality in health knowledge is that the disease burden of rich and poor countries are different, and that rich countries obviously produce much, much more research.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled Flexible Facilities for Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing

“Deadly H5N1 Bird Flu Needs Just 5 Mutations to Spread Easily in People,” Los Angeles Times

“It’s a flu virus so deadly that scientists once halted research on the disease because governments feared it might be used by terrorists to stage a biological attack. Yet despite the fact that the H5N1 avian influenza has killed 60% of the 650 humans known to be infected since it was identified in Hong Kong 17 years ago, the “bird flu” virus has yet to evolve a means of spreading easily among people.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled Choosing a Cell Culture Media Development Strategy for Biopharmaceutical Production

“What’s Happening with Stem Cell Research in California,” Sacramento Business Journal

“Nine of the first 14 disease research teams funded by California’s stem cell agency are actively enrolling patients for clinical trials or expect to begin doing so by the end of the year. Two trials have already started: one to test therapies related to HIV/AIDS and the other for congestive heart failure, agency staff said at a local update on the program at University of California Davis last week.

If you like this story, please see our blog titled Stem Cell Therapy Indications for Cardiovascular Disease in Phase II/III Clinical Trials

“Ears, Noses Grown from Stem Cells in Lab Dishes,” CBS News

“In a north London hospital, scientists are growing noses, ears and blood vessels in the laboratory in a bold attempt to make body parts using stem cells. It is among several labs around the world, including in the U.S., that are working on the futuristic idea of growing custom-made organs in the lab. While only a handful of patients have received the British lab-made organs so far- including tear ducts, blood vessels and windpipes — researchers hope they will soon be able to transplant more types of body parts into patients, including what would be the world’s first nose made partly from stem cells.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Captivating Cell Images

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