science funding

The Best of Times, the Worst of Times with Bruce Jenett, DLA Piper

Podcast Sponsor: Ingenuity - iReport, the fastest and most accurate way to get biological meaning from your expression data. iReport/


Bruce Jenett, Partner, DLA PIPER Bio and Contact Info

Chapters: (Advance the marker)

0:49 Taking a macro look at the industry

3:54 The dirty secrets of VC

9:59 The myth that no one funds early stage company

17:31 An attorney in Silicon Valley is expected to help a company get funded

22:50 We're digging a gold mine with a teaspoon

27:58 What do you think of open collaboration?

36:10 Where do you go for your information?

Bruce Jenett is a partner at the global law firm, DLA Piper. Bruce has been in the industry for 30 years representing life science customers. He says the job of an attorney in this industry is to help their clients raise money. Bruce came up with the Dickensian title for today's show. From his perch, Bruce offers a macro picture of the industry and shares some of the dirty little secrets he's picked up along the way.

How to Rescue the Life Sciences from Technological Torpor

Having spent my career in two fields grounded in the physical sciences that made better, faster, cheaper a core driving principle—telecommunications and semiconductors—it’s hard not to cast a jaundiced eye at the sorry state of the pharmaceutical industry. To paraphrase the immortal Dean Wormer in Animal House, ineffective, slower, and more expensive is no way to go through life!

Commercializing Research: U of I Research Park

Podcast Sponsor: Ingenuity - iReport, the fastest and most accurate way to get biological meaning from your expression data. iReport/


Laura Frerichs, Director, University of Illinois Research Park Bio and Contact Info

Yi Lu, PhD ,Professor, University of Illinois Bio and Contact Info

Listen (3:49) What is the process for turning research into a successful startup?

Listen (10:53) Advantages to using the U of I Research Park

Listen (2:45) Trend is toward commercializing more research

Listen (1:46) Are there conflicts of interest here?

Listen (5:59) Dr. Lu is the founder of two companies at U of I Research Park

Listen (3:32) Decision to start a company

Listen (7:18) Leveraging existing glycometers to look for biomarkers

Listen (4:37) Does commercialization detract from research?

Listen (4:52) Why he's excited about digital health

Recently we’ve had on several guests who have created start-ups from technology developed at Stanford University. Today we have two guests on the program to talk about commercializing technologies developed at universities.

Laura Frerichs is the Director of the Research Park and Incubation Facilities at the University of Illinois. Laura discusses the programs that the Research Park has put in place to assist young businesses.

Later we talk with Dr. Yi Lu, a professor at the University of Illinois and founder of two start-ups, one of which has graduated from the Incubator.

In the Shoes of the Biotech CEO

To raise awareness of and preview the upcoming sessions at the BioExec Institute, Prescience (with UC Berkeley and Deloitte as partners) has been putting on some terrific discussion nights with thought leaders of the biopharma industry. Last night, at one of their typical hip venues in San Francisco, they hosted a panel discussion titled The Corner Office, What Is It Really Like to Be a Biotech CEO? Leading the discussion was Jim Schaeffer from Merck.

Innovating in the New Austerity: Steve Burrill Discusses His Book

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Steve Burrill, CEO, Burrill and Co. Bio and Contact Info

Chapters (Move marker to advance)

0:58 Is there a connection between innovation and austerity?

8:58 Consequences of the world's aging population

13:57 Ramifications of upcoming Supreme Court decision on Affordable Care Act

17:41 Opportunities abroad

25:40 Challenges abroad

31:21 AliveCor and Digital Health

39:03 A biologic on track to be world's top selling drug

Today we’re at the offices of Burrill and Co with CEO, Steve Burrill. Steve hardly needs an introduction in our industry. He was an early pioneer of biotech and helped set up such companies as Genentech and Cetus. Each year Burrill and Co. publishes a book on the state of the industry. It’s a complete almanac of information from what’s going on in such places as Singapore and Brazil to the digital health boom happening right here at home. More importantly it’s not just information, but a comprehensive guide to the industry and full of insight. Steve is more comfortable talking about the future than anyone I know. Today he challenges us with the notion that innovation can come at a time of austerity, and downplays the ramifications of the upcoming Supreme Court decision on the Affordable Care Act of 2010. Burrill also discusses a company he's recently invested in and whose board he chairs, AliveCor and makes his own projections of the rapidly growing industry of digital health.

Support by purchasing Steve's book, "Innovating in the New Austerity," here.

Asset Based Drug Development: Barbara Handelin, BioPontis Alliance

Podcast brought to you by: Assay Depot - the world's largest cloud-based marketplace for research services. With Assay Depot, you can easily find the perfect research service provider and manage your project from anywhere in the world.


Barbara Handelin, PhD, President, BioPontis Alliances Bio and Contact Info

Listen (6:02) BioPontis, an asset based model for drug development

Listen (8:04) Designing new incentives for academic researchers

Listen (6:07) First finding out where industry partners place value

Listen (3:54) Advantages of an overall view

Listen (6:11) How do you find the best science?

Listen (2:32) Why not create new companies?

Listen (8:32) Virtual model built on strong relationships and new agreements

Listen (4:36) Challenges for a virtual company

BioPontis Alliance is pursuing a new asset based model in drug development. That means the company sees drug candidates through from the original science to early phase without creating companies to develop each drug. Rather, through an alliance of university researchers, a venture fund, CROs and industry partners, BioPontis stays focused on the particular drug candidate, or asset. Dr. Barbara Handelin is the president of BioPontis. She is a veteran entrepreneur and molecular medical geneticist who has pioneered the responsible application of genetics to clinical medicine for over 25 years. In 1987 Dr. Handelin established one of the first commercial DNA testing laboratories at Integrated Genetics (now Genzyme Genetics). After co-founding a gene therapy company in 1995 (Genovo), Dr. Handelin began her own consulting practice, Handelin Associates. She served 10 years as a board member of Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research (PRIM&R) as well as on a variety of federal committees and advisory panels on ethics in genetic testing.

At BioPontis they are addressing critical problems in the industry. One of these is the misaligned incentives for academic researchers. It's so often the case today that researchers hold back important discoveries until they are able to publish in an important journal and so advance their career. BioPontis has designed agreements to address this protectionism, offering researchers incentives for collaborating more closely. Also, in doing away with the idea that you have to form a company for each new drug candidate--more overhead, more time, more cost--BioPontis focuses instead on 'assets', saving time and money. Barbara talks about the virtual model that's really a hybrid between venture fund and R & D and how this model could very well be the future.

Leading Through Creative Investment: Corey Goodman, VenBio

Podcast brought to you by: Assay Depot - the world's largest cloud-based Research Exchange for pharmaceutical research services.

1:53 A new model of investing at VenBio

10:13 All the leaders of big pharma know the industry is in crisis

14:54 Attempt to change Pfizer

24:10 What excites you about the industry?

26:52 Influenced by Buddhism

32:13 City kid on a ranch

Dr. Corey Goodman is a man of many talents with an illustrious background in bio. He’s a renowned scientist, entrepreneur, educator, and corporate executive. And now his latest role is that of investor as a Partner in the VC firm, VenBio. He has been President of Pfizer’s Biotherapeutics and Bioinnovation Center, was co-founder of Exelixis and Renovis, and was a professor at Stanford Univeristy and UC Berkeley for over two decades. He’s currently an adjuct professor at UC San Francisco. Corey talks about the new model of investing he's pursuing with VenBio. He gives insight into his brief stint at Pfizer where he fostered an impressive ambition to change from the inside the world's largest drug maker. Beginning with the goal of creating a Pfizer Genentech, Corey left the pharma giant after just two years without being able to do much change at all. Corey works part of the week from his ranch, where the interview is taped, and shares some of his personal thoughts on the industry and on life. He also shares some of his music.

Will Scientists Take Back the Pharma Industry?

“Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.” Bertrand Russell

Retirement can do a lot for someone who’s been bottled up in a big company for thirty years. Especially if they don’t actually retire. Bernard Munos spent thirty years at Lilly where for the last ten years he was focused on disruptive innovation. But it didn’t happen there. So he’s out to see if he can ignite a fire for disruption in the industry before it’s too late.

Investing at the Intersections with Rowan Chapman, Mohr Davidow

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Rowan Chapman, Mohr Davidow Bio and Contact Info

Listen (3:35) I've got a PhD, what next?

Listen (5:38) How did you become an investor?

Listen (6:14) Mohr Davidow investing in industry intersections

Listen (3:58) What can you tell start-ups about approaching VC?

Listen (4:17) Trends in life science funding

Listen (4:20) What hot spots excite you today?

Rowan Chapman is a partner at the VC firm, Mohr Davidow, and first dedicated member of the team devoted to life science. Rowan says she has a passion to work with entrepreneurs in a "hands on" role to help get companies started and financed. She’s a board member of four companies including Sequenta, VitaPath Genetics, and Health Tap and a board observer at Cardio Dx and Tethys Bioscience. Prior to that she worked closely with the board for PacBio, Paralelle, and RainDance. She has her finger on things all the way from tools, to social media, to diagnostics, to therapeutics. She is also a member of the Personalized Medicine Coalition. Prior to joining Mohr Davidow, Rowan held the position of director of business development at Rosetta Inpharmatics (acquired by Merck) We’re very happy to have her join us to talk about the investment side of the industry.

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