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Pharma R&D Model Needs Academic Tech Transfer Collaboration for the Future of Drug Innovation Says New Report

DALLAS, May 10, 2013 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- A new market research report on early-stage technology transfer collaborations & deals between academia and the pharmaceutical industry says a growing emphasis on academic and non-profit organization partnerships could rescue the pharmaceutical industry from the redundancy of an inefficient R&D model and plug the so-called "innovation gap". The report "PharmaSphere: Early-Stage Technology Transfer Collaborations - Enabling Platform Technologies & Deal Synergies between Academia and the Pharmaceutical Industry" argues that collaboration in drug development benefit's both parties, with academia constantly looking for sources of research funding – particularly as governments cut the amount of aid dedicated to federally-funded research – while the pharmaceutical industry would gain a partner to share in the high risks and substantial costs of bringing new medicines to market.


"The current R&D paradigm is bloated, duplicative, expensive, and in the long run, untenable," says GlobalData's Healthcare Industry Dynamics Team Analyst, Adam Dion . "There is a growing consensus in the industry that these challenges must be met collectively by bringing together public, private and government organizations to create multi-lateral collaborations to drive the next wave of scientific discovery." Dion explains that the dearth of innovative drugs on the current pharmaceutical landscape is at least partly the result of wasteful R&D activity. 2012 may have boasted the highest number of FDA drug approvals since 1996, but many of these were for "me-too" drugs or medications aimed at niche therapy areas.

"In the past, the big got bigger, as large pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer, Merck, GSK and AstraZeneca relied on organic growth, getting fat and happy on the success of their respective blockbuster drugs," says Dion. "However, many of the same companies did not put in place strategies to drive innovation into the future or manage the consequences of the patent cliff. Many industry participants are now considering a move from an old and inflexible R&D paradigm to a more collaborative and open ecosystem that fosters creativity and information sharing – a substantial cultural shift for an industry with a high level of reluctance to share anything."

Greater co-operation between rival drug companies and non-profit organisations may be a difficult pill for Big Pharma to swallow, states the analyst, but this approach may ultimately prove advantageous in the long-run. This report examines the terms, platform technologies, and deal rationale of 25 pharma-academic alliances from 2012–2013.

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Key Findings of this report include:

  • With the patent cliff and high R&D costs eroding corporate profitability, pharmaceutical companies will look for ways to replenish their pipelines by reaching out to academia in search of novel drug platforms
  • Despite the FDA approving 39 new drugs in 2012, the innovation gap continues, as many of these medicines are 'me-too' drugs, or orphan drugs indicated to treat small segments of the population suffering from rare diseases
  • Difficulty accessing capital and the continued economic recession have led to a deal adverse environment resulting in deals to decline on a global basis
  • Oncology, CNS, immunology and infectious diseases still remain hot therapeutic areas to strike licensing deals with academia

The report "PharmaSphere: Early-Stage Technology Transfer Collaborations - Enabling Platform Technologies & Deal Synergies between Academia and the Pharmaceutical Industry" helps you answer questions like:

  • What are the reasons for increased activity in strategic deals with academia by leading pharmaceutical companies and promising biotechs?
  • What are the deal terms of these collaboration agreements?
  • What therapeutic areas and geographic markets are pharmaceutical companies targeting to partner with academic research institutions?
  • What proprietary platforms and enabling technologies are these pharmaceutical companies trying to access?

Scope of the report covers:

  • Full examination of 25 significant technology transfer deals from 2012 and 2013 involving large pharmaceutical companies and academic organizations including licensing structure and terms
  • Analysis of the key drivers, trends, and strategies behind the deals undertaken by these pharmaceutical companies across major therapeutic areas
  • Discussion of the unsustainability of the current drug research model and how Big Pharma's embrace of collaboration and an open ecosystem could drive the next wave of scientific discovery
  • Tech Transfer in Action : Each section of the report includes a number of case studies and to highlight major themes within technology transfer
  • Platform assessment on enabling drug technologies being employed by academic research institutions of interest to pharmaceutical companies
  • Breakdown of disruptive innovation trends, including open-source patient data, pre-competitive information sharing, 'Big Data' and drug recycling/repurposing approaches

Comprehensive Table of Contents and more @

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