The Dish’s Weekly Biotechnology News Wrap Up – June 12, 2015

This week’s biotechnology news headlines include, blood test can reveal previous viruses, biosimilar study shows comparable results, Panasonic to buy Bayer diabetes business, Vertex and Parion partner on Cystic Fibrosis, FDA comments on Sanofi/Regeneron cholesterol drug, and China’s investment in biotech is working.

Cell Culture Events

Ask the Expert:

Live Cell Fluorescence Imaging

This Ask the Expert session is sponsored by Thermo Fisher Scientific and hosted by Virginia Spencer. Dr. Spencer is a R&D scientist with a PhD in biochemistry and epigenetics. She completed a post-doc at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and has extensive experience in live cell fluorescence imaging. Virginia has been working as an R&D scientist for ThermoFisher Scientific since 2010 and is currently developing products for improving cell culture performance and the live cell imaging experience.

Session Starts Monday!


High Performance Tour 2015

Discover how to improve efficiency and productivity for your bioprocessing workflows during our exclusive High Performance Tour.

Learn how the choice of chromatography media (resins), hardware, and services can dramatically affect your process performance.

Register now to reserve your seat at this special event where you can gain insights in improved process efficiency and productivity.

Coming to these Cities:

  • Raleigh-Durham, NC – June 22, 2015
  • San Diego, CA – September 15, 2015
  • San Francisco, CA – September 17, 2015

To Register –



  • Empowered Antibodies Congress 2015 – June 17 – 18 2015, Barcelona, Spain
  • Annual Meeting of the International Society for Stem Cell Research – June 24-27, 2015, -Stockholm, Sweden
  • BIO International Convention – June 15-18, 2014 – Philadelphia, PA
  • Viral Safety and Raw Materials Congress – June 24-25, 2015 – Austria Trend Hotel Savoyen – Vienna, Austria us at this year’s Viral Safety and Raw Materials Congress taking place in Vienna on the 24th-25th June to network and exchange with leading industry representatives, regulatory bodies and top level technology providers from across the globe to discuss and debate the latest trends in this changing sector.Packed with case studies, interactive tutorials, discussion panels and workshops, the conference agenda will provide you with key take home messages to benchmark your businesses’ strategies with regards to safeguarding against viral contamination enhancing the quality of your products.Covering all the key topics within the field of viral safety for biologics and raw materials, hear the latest on next generation detection technologies, supplier auditing, risk assessment techniques and raw material analytics from leading players including Roche, Genzyme, Sanofi Pasteur, Crucell and Abbott.For more information, please visit the event website: (please hyperlink to:




“This blood test can tell you every virus you’ve ever had,” The Washington Post

“Curious how many viruses have invaded your body over the course of your life? Now you can know.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “The Evolution of Vaccine Manufacturing – Past, Current, and Future Trends

“Drug switch study bolsters case for copies of biotech medicine,” Reuters

“New clinical data has bolstered the case for using cheaper copies of expensive biotech drugs by showing that patients with rheumatic diseases can be safely and effectively switched from original-brand medicine to a lower-cost version.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Closed Systems in Biomanufacturing Offer A Variety of Benefits

“Bayer to sell diabetes business to Panasonic Healthcare for $1.1B,” USA Today

“German pharmaceutical manufacturer Bayer AG said Wednesday it agreed to sell its diabetes care business to Panasonic Healthcare Holdings for about $1.1 billion.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Materials and Assay Systems Used for 3D Cell Culture

“FDA panel backs Amgen’s cholesterol drug for high-risk patients,” Reuters

An advisory panel to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended approval of Amgen Inc’s cholesterol-lowering drug Repatha on Wednesday, but said it should be used only in patients at high risk of cardiovascular disease.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “2014 FDA New Drug Approvals – 11 Biologics Receive Approval

“Vertex, Parion Partner in Up-to-$1.17B Cystic Fibrosis Collaboration,” Genetic Engineering News

“Vertex Pharmaceuticals and Parion Sciences said they have initiated an up-to-$1.17 billion-plus collaboration to develop investigational epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) inhibitors as a potential treatment of cystic fibrosis (CF) and other pulmonary diseases.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Tools and Strategies for Transient Protein Production in Mammalian Cells – A Discussion

“FDA staff: Sanofi/Regeneron drug lowers LDL, is well tolerated,” Reuters

“An experimental drug made by Sanofi SA and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc effectively lowers bad LDL cholesterol and is generally well tolerated, according to a preliminary review by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Cell Culture Media Optimization: Making the perfect magical potion

“China’s big biotech bet starting to pay off,” Reuters

“Years of pouring money into its laboratories, wooing scientists home from overseas and urging researchers to publish and patent is starting to give China a competitive edge in biotechnology, a strategic field it sees as ripe for “indigenous innovation.”

If you like this story, please see our blog titled “Continuous Bioprocessing – The Biomanufacturing Model of the Future?”

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