Biopharma happenings, including deals and partnerships, grants, preclinical data and other news in brief: Anabios, Anticancer, Aytu, Century, Correvio, Curadigm, Cytovance, Emergent, GT, Hong Kong Teson, Immunitybio, Innovation, Kuur, Medicinova, Mesoblast, Nkarta, Novavax, Point, Scintomics, Trianni.
LONDON – The Gates Foundation and Wellcome Trust have joined forces with financial services specialist Mastercard in establishing a $125 million seed fund to accelerate development of drugs to treat COVID -19. The COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator aims to play a catalytic role by speeding up evaluation of new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat the novel coronavirus in the near term, and other viral pathogens in the longer term
With Friday’s last-minute decision to move to an all-virtual format, the opening session of the 2020 Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) was certainly an unusual one. “We are in uncharted waters,” conference co-chair Sharon Hillier, Richard Sweet Professor of Reproductive Infectious Disease at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, told the audience via livestream.
The financial markets were delivered a one-two punch March 9 – a plunge in oil prices along with fears that the coronavirus is continuing to spread unabated. As a result, the Dow Jones Industrial Average cratered 1,500 points in early trading after a brief halt with market circuit breakers kicking in. Biopharma equities did not escape the carnage, with the BioWorld Biopharmaceutical index trading down about 4% by market close, with the Dow closing down 7.8%.
HONG KONG – U.S., China and the Netherlands-based Harbour Biomed Therapeutics Ltd. has teamed up with Mount Sinai Health System, New York City's largest academic medical system, to develop novel biotherapies in oncology and immunology. The two parties will also be using Harbour’s H2L2 Harbour Mice platform to develop a monoclonal antibody (MAb) against the coronavirus that has turned into a global epidemic.
LONDON – The World Health Organization (WHO) has released its COVID-19 R&D roadmap, highlighting the gaps in knowledge about the virus and setting out priorities for research. The organization is now calling on groups around the world to use the document – drawn up by 400 experts – to coordinate their efforts.