Elan's High Wire Act Finds a Semi-Safe Net
Elan's and Johnson & Johnson's multi-faceted Alzheimer's disease partnership, announced on July 2, addresses the strategic needs of both parties--but also creates new uncertainties.
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Four start-ups previously profiled in START-UP – CoMentis, EnVivo Pharmaceuticals, Avid Radiopharmaceuticals and AC Immune SA – show how some biotechs have successfully ridden through the rough patches any company brave enough to tackle Alzheimer’s disease will likely face.
Johnson & Johnson believes its future success is directly dependent on its ability to access best-in-class science via more flexible, less risky partnerships. The health care giant's global head of pharmaceutical R&D, Paul Stoffels, explains in greater detail J&J's open innovation model.
Neurodegenerative diseases have emerged as one of the toughest and potentially most attractive frontiers in specialty drug development. Companies interested in the NDD space have the option of pursuing several strategies: disease-modifying therapies, symptom management therapies, or a hybrid approach, in which symptom-modifying drugs provide near-term revenues but also have longer-term potential for disease modification. Given the extraordinary difficulty associated with producing a successful disease-modifying new therapy, drugs aimed at treating symptoms are likely to dominate the NDD space for years. Licensors are rewarding developers with promising symptom modification programs with attractive deals.