The Dish’s Weekly Biotechnology News Wrap Up – December 11, 2015

This week’s biotechnology news headlines include, FDA approves Alexion drug, CAR T Cell Therapy updates, Pfizer’s lung cancer drug gets speedy review, Nohla Therapeutics to improve cord blood stem cell transplants, Roche signs immunotherapy deal with Pieris, Teva asthma drug gets recommendation for advisory committee, and first dengue fever vaccine approved by Mexico.

Cell Culture Events



  • World Stem Cell Summit & RegMed Capital Conference– December 10-12, 2015 – Hyatt Regency, Atlanta, Georgia-The World Stem Cell Summit, produced by the Genetics Policy Institute (GPI), is the largest interdisciplinary, networking meeting of stem cell science and regenerative medicine stakeholders, uniting the diverse community. With the overarching purpose of fostering biomedical research, funding and investments targeting cures, the Summit is the single conference charting the future of this burgeoning field. –
  • ASCB – December 12-16, 2015 – San Diego Convention Center, CA – The 2015 ASCB meeting overarching theme is about making connections at different scales, from the intracellular level to the tissue level, to the organism level all the way up to the macrocosmic level, all in the light of big data and information integration. This integration will help us ask the right questions and find answers to the challenging problems in medicine, living systems, and ecosystems.-

Visit Essential Pharmaceuticals Booth #748 at ASCB

Attend the Tech Talk:

Variables in FBS Impact Cell Performance, Reproducibility and Relevant Experimental Results

Tuesday Dec. 15, 2015 2:00 – 2:45 PM

Exhibit Hall, Theatre #2


“FDA approves Alexion drug for ultra-rare disease,” Reuters

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday approved Alexion Pharmaceutical Inc’s treatment for an ultra-rare and potentially fatal genetic disorder.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Biomanufacturing CHO Media – A look at different approaches and optimization opportunities

“Killer T-Cells Provide Hope For Treating Toughest Blood Cancers,” Forbes

“At the 57th annual meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH), wrapping up today in Orlando, FL, much of the excitement centered around cancer-killing immune cells known as chimeric antigen receptor T-cells, or CARTs. And it’s no wonder. Three companies working on the technology presented promising data of their CARTs from clinical studies in a variety of blood cancers, led by Swiss pharma giant Novartis, which confirmed it is on track to file for FDA approval of its investigational CART, called CTL019, in 2017.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Cool Tool – Gibco Essential 8 Flex Stem Cell Media Eliminates Need for Daily Feeding

“Pfizer’s Xalkori gets speedy review for ROS1 NSCLC,” PharmaTimes

“The US Food and Drug Administration is undertaking a speedy review of Pfizer’s kinase inhibitor Xalkori for the treatment of patients with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer whose tumours are ROS1-positive.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “BioProcess International Conference (BPI) 2015 – An Overview For Anyone Who Missed It!

“Startup Nohla Therapeutics to build on Hutch cord-blood work,” The Seattle Times

“With decades of research and a handful of successful clinical trials behind it, a biotechnology startup is launching Thursday to work on improving the use of umbilical-cord blood in stem-cell transplants.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Cool Tool- Hybridoma cell growth and performance in reduced serum + Zap-SR

“Roche Inks Up-to-$409M Cancer Immunotherapy Alliance with Pieris,” Genetic Engineering News

“Roche will join Pieris Pharmaceuticals in an up-to-CHF 415 million ($409 million) cancer immunotherapy collaboration designed to develop new drug candidates based on Pieris’ Anticalin® technology platform against an undisclosed target.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Exosomes: A Major Phenomenon Flying Under the Radar

“U.S. FDA advisers recommend approval of Teva asthma drug for adults,” Reuters

“An advisory committee to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended on Wednesday that the agency approve Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd’s <TEVA.TA) experimental drug reslizumab for severe asthma in patients aged 18 and older.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Hollow Fiber Provides a Sweet Spot for Several Biomanufacturing Applications

“First Dengue Fever Vaccine Approved by Mexico,” The New York Times

“A dengue fever vaccine developed by the French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi has been approved for use by Mexico, the first approval in the world for any vaccine for the disease, which afflicts tens of millions of people around the world and is becoming an increasing threat.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “You can teach an old dog new tricks: Vero cells for virus-based cancer vaccine therapies

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