Biotech’s Battlefront: Monoclonal Antibodies

Emily BurkeBiologics, Biotech Basics, Cancer, Drug Targets, FDA, Mechanism of Action, Monoclonal Antibodies, Orphan Drugs, The WEEKLY

Since their premier on the scene, monoclonal antibodies (mAb) have demanded top billing on the biotech marquee, creating a cast of therapeutics used to treat diseases like autoimmune disorders and cancer. The first player debuted in 1986 when Janssen-Cilag’s OKT3 gained FDA approval to treat transplant rejection patients. Fast forward to 2013, where half of the top ten best selling … Read More

Pursuing The Promise Of Unlimited Platelets

Emily BurkeBiologics, Cocktail Fodder, Ebola, Genomics, Mechanism of Action, The WEEKLY

Universal platelet cells—generated from human induced pluripotent stem cells—made their debut last week, courtesy of Advanced Cell Technology (Marlborough, MA). The possibility of producing platelets—the component of blood that stops bleeding on-demand and circumventing donor rejection—could be a game changer for both platelet transfusions and even other tissue transplants. Universal platelets are free of the infectious agents found in donated … Read More

Sculpting A Better Life For Sickle Cell Patients

Emily BurkeBiologics, Clinical Trials, Cocktail Fodder, Drug Development, Drug Targets, Easily Confused, FDA, Genetics, Mechanism of Action, Monoclonal Antibodies, Orphan Disease, Orphan Drugs, Small Molecule Drugs, The WEEKLY

With the recent announcement of two new biologics in Phase I studies for Sickle Cell Disease (SCD), WEEKLY takes a closer look at the treatments for this autosomal recessive disease, afflicting approximately 100,000 Americans and 25 million globally. Sickle cell anemia is caused by an SNP in the beta globin gene, which codes for hemoglobin—an oxygen-binding protein in red blood … Read More

Mutations And Disease: The Spice Of Life

Emily BurkeBiologics, Biotech Basics, Cancer, Cardiovascular Disease, Cocktail Fodder, Drug Targets, FDA, Genetics, Mechanism of Action, The WEEKLY

This week’s issue features excerpts from the “Genetic Variation” chapter of The Biotech Primer, our 200-page book that provides an in-depth look at the biotech industry and the science that drives it. In this chapter, we explain the different types and causes of genetic mutations and then explore their relationship to disease and therapeutics. Today, we begin with a discussion … Read More

Squeezing The Juice Out Of Drug Metabolism

Emily BurkeCardiovascular Disease, Drug Targets, HIV, Mechanism of Action, Small Molecule Drugs, Term of the Week, The WEEKLY

When popping a pill, we seldom think about what happens next—to the pill, or even to our bodies. We assume the body welcomes any extra help to fix the problem, but the reaction is quite contrary. A swallowed pill (small molecule drug) is instantly labeled by our body as foreign and the reaction of our body is to immediately get … Read More