News flash from Basel: Yes, Novartis really is considering selling off a few of its units, in deals that could be worth $15 billion to $20 billion. And no, Roche and Novartis aren't likely to embark on any big joint projects, much less consider a merger.
In drug development, everything's a gamble, if you're doing something new and shooting at a big target. But there has to be a reasonable assumption that if safety issues aren't being glossed over and the efficacy data hold up, these top drugs can change standards of care and grab market share. So here's my pick of the likely big winners >>
The interest in vaccine deals stems from a belief that tweaking the immune system can have a major impact on cancer care.
When John Reed headed up Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, the marathon runner was well known for early starts and fast finishes. And now, as the new head of Roche's Basel-based Pharma Research and Early Development group--better known as pRED--he's in for the run of his life. Read the full feature >>
Perjeta is now the first cancer drug approved to treat patients before surgery. Developed by Roche's Genentech unit, and already approved for women with advanced HER2-positive breast cancer, Perjeta can now reach a huge new group of patients at early stages of the disease.
Roche and Novartis may not head to the altar anytime soon--if ever. But the Swiss drugmakers could spend some quality time together. As Roche CEO Severin Schwan said over the weekend, why not collaborate? After all, Roche cooperates with plenty of other rivals.
Researchers have posted early-stage data demonstrating that Roche's PD-L1 drug MPDL3280A--which takes the blinders off the immune system to spur an attack on cancer--scored a hopeful 26% response rate among a small group of non-small cell lung cancer patients who smoked.
Struggling gene sequencer Pacific Biosciences signed a diagnostics product-development deal with industry giant Roche worth as much as $75 million.
Struggling gene sequencer Pacific Biosciences saw its stock rocket upward in the wake of a diagnostics development deal with industry giant Roche that's worth as much as $75 million, closing at $5.98 on Sept. 25, a jump of more than 72.8%.
Roche's massive diagnostics division has signed on with yet another development partner: California's Pacific Biosciences, which focuses on gene sequencing. The pair will develop diagnostics products for clinical research.