Pfizer vs. J&J: Antithesis to Synthesis
The two polar opposites of pharmaceutical strategy--Pfizer with its primary-care, highly centrallized approach and J&J with its niches and decentralization--are testing the limits of their models' capabilities. But these two antitheses are now beginning to move towards a synthesis.
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In an interview, Peter Corr, the new head of the industry's largest R&D organization, argues that scale, properly managed, can solve the key problem for innovative R&D organizations: the ability to feed both early- and late-stage development. Smaller firms create unbridgeable pipeline gaps by having to focus on the late-stage and starving the early work. Moreover, Pfizer is making a huge investment in attrition-reducing early-clinical technologies, especially imaging, to find biomarkers which will tell researchers whether a drug is working in humans before it begins more expensive trials. Again scale is crucial: Pfizer's investment can be amortized over a large number of projects, making it financially more affordable and productive for Pfizer than a similar investment would be for smaller companies. To increase the utilization and productivity of this investment, Corr wants to increase Pfizer's in-licensing of preclinical and Phase I compounds--a dramatic change in Pfizer's licensing habits, which have focused on late-stage opportunities and the acquisition of discovery platforms.
Cancer deals involve City of Hope/Chimeric, CARISMA/NYU, Sorrento/Mayo Clinic, Rain/Drexel, Diaprost/Memorial Sloan Kettering, Alkido/University of Kentucky. Plus, research collaborations in brief.
This edition of the Device Week podcast covers Cognoa’s development of an app to detect autism spectrum disorder early, Novocure’s customer-focused business strategy during the pandemic, and the new $585m fund created by Longitude Capital to invest in medtech, pharma and biotech.