The year in new drugs: Looking back and ahead –

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:49 pm

Gene therapy is a very hot area. Scientists can now fix defective genetic mutations that cause diseases. An initial focus is in rare diseases with urgent clinical needs, but the future holds the possibility for significant expansion.

Another promising area is the broadening of the scope of cell therapy, which is currently being used for blood cancers, into solid tumors. If this is successful, it could transform the field of personalized cancer care.

Finally, Biogen has a novel antibody drug for the treatment of Alzheimers. If the FDA approves this therapy, it could lead to the resurgence of Alzheimers drug development, which represents a huge unmet medical need.

How about at OMRF? What did 2019 deliver, and what has you excited for 2020?

The FDA approved Adakveo in November, a new drug for sickle cell disease based on discoveries made by OMRFs Dr. Rod McEver. In 2020, Im excited about Progentec, an OMRF spin-off company thats developing novel diagnostic and disease management solutions for autoimmune patients.

Also, we have a new startup called Ambocept thats developing novel cancer therapeutics. Finally, two drugs that began in OMRF labs are progressing in clinical trials: one to treat hearing loss, the other for people suffering from deadly brain cancers.

Paula Burkes, Business writer

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The year in new drugs: Looking back and ahead -

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