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SBP and GSK Create Center for Translational Neuroscience

 Trending now: Academic-industry alliance seeks to find and validate new targets for drug development.

PV0616_WeirPowersSanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP), a fundamental and translational research institute, and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), a global pharmaceutical company, have created the SBP-GSK Center for Translational Neuroscience.

The new center, located on the SBP campus in La Jolla, Calif., is bringing together experts from SBP and GSK to investigate factors that influence brain function and potentially reverse or slow down neurodegeneration, with the aim of identifying and validating new therapeutic targets. Under the three-year agreement, GSK is providing funding to create and support a research laboratory. Staffed by SBP scientists, postdoctoral candidates and technicians working alongside neuroscientists from GSK, the Center will be designed to bolster research dedicated to translational neuroscience.

The number of people living with dementia worldwide is set to triple by 2050 to 135 million, yet there are currently no medicines that can prevent or cure this common disorder, and the same can be said of other neurodegenerative conditions.

Development of new medicines to treat these conditions is particularly challenging — only 8% of experimental treatments for neurological conditions that reach the testing stage in humans ever become an approved medicine. The new SBP-GSK Center for Translational Neuroscience aims to increase this success rate by improving the translation of disease biology to drug discovery through a successful collaboration that drives synergistic innovation.

“Neurodegeneration is one of the most important and challenging areas for science and medicine,” says SBP CEO Perry Nisen, M.D., Ph.D. “This unique alliance provides an opportunity to combine the complementary expertise of our institutions to address one of the greatest unmet needs of our society today.”

Industry Veterans Launch New Agency

Frank X. Powers and Lorna Weir — two advertising agency veterans — are launching a new venture called Elevate,  a multidisciplinary strategy lab serving the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device sectors. Elevate specializes in shaping and transforming product objectives into actionable sales and marketing strategies that drive commercial success.

Elevate is committed to:
Cross-disciplinary strategic expertise for comprehensive analysis of complex healthcare landscapes.

Progressive business thinking, working upstream of promotional agencies to define and translate the promise of product opportunities.

Pivoting quickly to help put strategies into action — selecting, connecting, and mobilizing the right downstream resources to increase efficiency and boost performance.

“Elevate’s role for our clients is differentiated in that we work closely with senior leadership to help lay the strategic foundation and ensure that when they pull the trigger to invest in a tactical marketing partner, all the underpinnings of an integrated campaign or launch have been fully vetted, tested, and have full corporate support,” Mr. Powers says. “We’re already working with several anchor clients, deploying our team of strategic, scientific and creative experts who become fully immersed in strategic planning, sales and marketing integration.”

eBook Discusses Future of Digital Marketing

Sermo in collaboration with Wharton, Google, and McKinsey have teamed up for the release of Pharma 3D: Rewriting the Script for Marketing in the Digital Age.

Pharma 3D draws on conclusions from across industries to help pharmaceutical companies build a pragmatic, actionable strategy for engaging with the new digital reality. To support the best practices outlined in the text, Sermo — a featured partner in the book — contributed data and case studies on the online and social media behavior of doctors. A few Sermo findings highlighted in the book include:

One in four U.S. physicians use social media daily to seek out medical information; one in seven actually contribute to a social network;

Close to two-thirds of doctors believe medical crowdsourcing on social platforms will become an important clinical decision support tool;

More than half of doctors stick to physician-only networks to discuss the business and practice of medicine; and
Close to 60% say social media improves the quality of care delivered to patients.

For more information, follow #Pharma3D on social media.

Pfizer Taps IBM for Research Collaboration

Pfizer and IBM have launched a first-of-its-kind research collaboration to develop innovative remote monitoring solutions aimed at transforming how clinicians deliver care to patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease. The experimental approach will rely on a system of sensors, mobile devices, and machine learning to provide real-time, around-the-clock disease symptom information to clinicians and researchers. The ultimate goal is to obtain a better understanding of a patient’s disease progression and medication response to help inform treatment decisions and clinical trial design, while also speeding the development of new therapeutic options.

“We have an opportunity to potentially redefine how we think about patient outcomes and 24/7 monitoring, by combining Pfizer’s scientific, medical and regulatory expertise with IBM’s ability to integrate and interpret complex data in innovative ways,” says Mikael Dolsten, M.D., Ph.D., president of Pfizer Worldwide Research and Development. “The key to our success will be to deliver a reliable, scalable system of measurement and analysis that would help inform our clinical programs across important areas of unmet medical need, potentially accelerating the drug development and regulatory approval processes and helping us to get better therapies to patients, faster.” (PV)

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