Kroger and Walgreens to Buy Products Together to Cut Costs

Total Retail | December 12, 2019

Grocery store Kroger and drug store Walgreens are teaming up. In an effort to cut supplier costs, the two companies want to start buying merchandise together, CNBC reported. The chain retailers will call this partnership the Retail Procurement Alliance, and will have them identifying overlap in products that they both are receiving so they can place their orders together. This will increase scale and lower costs for both parties, as well as reduce waste. The alliance will also evaluate if it's possible for Kroger to start manufacturing items in-house for Walgreens and vice versa, CNBC reported. Furthermore, Kroger and Walgreens hope that other companies will join the Retail Procurement Alliance in the future.

Spotlight

For immuno-oncology research and the hunt for new immunotherapies, scientists are required to reliably quantify the functions and interactions of cancer cells and immune cells. Cell proliferation assays of tumor growth are a mainstay. Activation and proliferation assays for immune cells are also used to study how the body mobilizes its forces against invading cancers. Readouts of cell migration, the underlying process for the spread and invasion of tumors as well as the directional movement of immune cells toward tumors are also key. Perhaps most importantly, co-culture assays are deployed to quantify the killing and clearance of tumor cells by the immune system.


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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Spotlight Therapeutics Appoints Visionary Global Pharma Drug Developer Antoine Yver, M.D., M.Sc. as First Independent Board Member

Spotlight Therapeutics | July 18, 2022

Spotlight Therapeutics, Inc. a biotechnology company applying new insights to develop cell-targeted in vivo CRISPR gene editing biologics, announced the appointment of Antoine Yver, M.D., M.Sc. to the Spotlight Board of Directors. Trained as an oncologist and immunologist, Dr. Yver’s extensive industry experience and perceptive acumen will be extremely valuable as Spotlight continues to strengthen its highly differentiated TAGE platform and advance lead therapeutic candidates towards the clinic. “We are thrilled to welcome Antoine to Spotlight’s Board of Directors. Few people in our industry enjoy such a remarkable track record of successful drug development, exercising extreme rigor in following the science to deliver practice-changing medicines that serve patients with significant unmet medical needs.” Mary Haak-Frendscho, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Spotlight As Executive Vice President and Global Head of Oncology R&D at Daiichi Sankyo, Dr. Yver played a key role in the development of the new breakthrough cancer biologic, Enhertu®, that is redefining breast cancer treatment and promises to set a new standard of care, as well as other Daiichi Sankyo DXd ADCs. From 2009 to 2016, Dr. Yver held executive leadership positions at AstraZeneca, including SVP & Global Head of Oncology Development. Under his leadership, Tagrisso® and Lynparza® were successfully developed and commercialized for patients. Prior to joining AstraZeneca, Dr. Yver held roles at Merck, Johnson & Johnson, Aventis and Rhone-Poulenc Rorer. Dr. Yver is Executive Vice President and Chairman of Development at Centessa Pharmaceuticals plc and currently serves as an Independent Director of the Board of Directors at Sanofi. “I am delighted to join the Spotlight Board and support the mission to unlock the full potential of gene editing and enable effective single administration therapeutics for patients,” said Dr. Yver. “Spotlight’s biologics-based delivery approach has the potential to forge a new generation of cell-targeted in vivo CRISPR gene editing medicines across multiple therapeutic areas.” “Antoine’s deep insights and vast global pharma experience will help propel Spotlight to becoming a clinical stage company,” said Craig Gordon, M.D., Spotlight board member, Founder, CEO, and CIO of GordonMD™ Global Investments. “We look forward to working together to impact the strategic decisions of the company that will ultimately provide benefit to patients.” About Spotlight Therapeutics Established in mid-2018, Spotlight Therapeutics is a privately held biotechnology company advancing a pipeline of cell-targeted in vivo CRISPR gene editing therapies. Spotlight's proprietary technology platform TAGE is a new class of biologics, CRISPR effectors engineered for direct delivery in vivo, to achieve cell-selective therapeutic genome editing. Spotlight's pipeline is advancing its modular programmable CRISPR effectors towards clinical studies in immuno-oncology, ophthalmic diseases and hemoglobinopathies.

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PHARMACY MARKET

Standigm Signs MOU with Merck Korea for AI drug Discovery Research

Standigm | June 02, 2022

Standigm Inc. the leading workflow artificial intelligence (AI) drug discovery company, announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Merck Korea, for AI-based drug discovery research. The MOU signing took place on May 30 at the headquarters of Standigm, attended by Sojeong Yun, CEO of Standigm, and Stephen Namkoo Lee, the Head of Science and Lab Solutions, Life Science business sector of Merck Korea. Under the MOU, Standigm will accelerate its drug discovery research by adopting Merck's AI software SYNTHIA™. which can help Standigm's novel compound synthesis. SYNTHIA™ is a computer-aided retrosynthetic design tool and unites network theory, modern high-power computing, and expert chemical knowledge to rapidly design synthetic pathways. "Applying AI to the drug discovery process can dramatically reduce time in discovering novel drug candidates and finding optimized synthesis paths. By pooling know-how in AI synthesis of Merck and Standigm's AI technology together, we expect better results in drug discovery faster, compared to the traditional AI drug discovery method," Sojeong Yun, co-founder and CEO of Standigm "Candidate chemical discovery using AI technology for new drug development is playing a crucial role in the growth of local bioindustry," said Stephen Nam-Koo Lee, Head of Science and Lab Solutions for South Korea, Life Science business sector, Merck Korea. As a leading workflow AI drug discovery company, Standigm has actively conducted research on AI technology in organic synthesis at its own Synthetic Research Center, established last year. About Standigm Standigm is a workflow AI-driven drug discovery company headquartered in Seoul, South Korea and Standigm has expanded its operations across the world, recently opening offices in the U.S. and UK. Standigm has proprietary AI platforms encompassing novel target identification to compound design, to generate commercially valuable drug pipelines. Founded in 2015, Standigm has established an early-stage drug discovery workflow AI to generate multiple First-in-Class compounds within seven months. Pursuing full-stack, AI-driven industrializing drug discovery, Standigm has achieved the automation of molecular design workflow, and the automation effort has been expanding to the whole drug discovery process based on Standigm AI platforms, including Standigm ASK™ for novel target discovery, Standigm BEST™ for novel compound generation. About Merck Merck a leading science and technology company, operates across life science, healthcare and electronics. Around 60,000 employees work to make a positive difference to millions of people's lives every day by creating more joyful and sustainable ways to live. From advancing gene editing technologies and discovering unique ways to treat the most challenging diseases to enabling the intelligence of devices – the company is everywhere. In 2021, Merck generated sales of € 19.7 billion in 66 countries.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Ellipses Pharma and SunRock Biopharma Enter Into a Licensing Agreement for a First-in-class Bifunctional HER3:TRAIL Fusion Protein

SunRock Biopharma S.L | May 26, 2022

SunRock Biopharma S.L. a biopharmaceutical company that is developing a portfolio of innovative bispecific antibodies to treat incurable cancer, and Ellipses Pharma Limited a global drug development company focused on accelerating the development of new oncology treatments, announce that they have entered into an exclusive licensing agreement for SRB22, a fully human bifunctional HER3:TRAIL fusion protein, which going forward will be known as EP0017. Under the agreement, Ellipses has been granted global rights to develop and commercialise EP0017 and will assume the full cost and responsibility for the remaining pre-clinical and clinical development of the compound. In line with its strategy, Ellipses intends to out licence EP0017 for commercialisation if it proves safe and effective in clinical trials. SunRock will continue to be involved in the development of EP0017 to ensure efficient translational activities through a service agreement with Ellipses. If Ellipses out-licences EP0017, SunRock will also receive milestone payments and royalties. EP0017 is a first-in-class bifunctional fusion protein with a dual mechanism of action. It selectively targets HER3, which is overexpressed in several different tumour types, and additionally, binds to the tumour death receptors DR4 and DR5, inducing tumour cell death. Promising data has been generated in a range of preclinical models that demonstrate the potential of EP0017. Laureano Simón, Ph.D., CEO of SunRock Biopharma, said “The agreement with Ellipses will speed up the development of EP0017, moving this potentially life-changing asset towards the clinic and then hopefully towards cancer patients who desperately need novel approaches to fight invasive tumours.” Rajan Jethwa, MD, CEO of Ellipses Pharma “Our mission is to rapidly develop innovative cancer therapies, to get these therapies into the clinic as quickly as possible and potentially save more lives. We are excited about the opportunity to progress the development of this promising asset and look forward to working with SunRock to expedite the preclinical work.” About SunRock Biopharma S.L. Since its inception in 2014, SunRock has developed a comprehensive pipeline of seven therapeutic antibodies, bispecific antibodies and fusion proteins with proven therapeutic effects against several types of tumours that currently lack a treatment. The innovative spirit of SunRock defines the development of all its molecules, that are the result of a disruptive technological platform that has led to pioneer therapies with an innovative format, including first-in-class bispecific antibodies and fusion proteins that target both novel and well-known therapeutic targets. SunRock’s project portfolio is generating great expectations among patient associations, major hospitals, and biopharmaceutical companies. The Government of Galicia participates in SunRock through the Galicia Innova Tech Fund, FICC. About Ellipses Pharma Limited Ellipses Pharma is a global drug development company based in London, focused on accelerating the development of cancer medicines and treatments through an innovative drug development model that combines unbiased vetting to de-risk initial asset selection with an uninterrupted funding flow to minimize the time it takes to advance lead products through clinical trials and reach patients.

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PHARMA TECH

Novotech and Medidata expand partnership to continue advancements in clinical research

Medidata | June 16, 2022

Medidata, a Dassault Systèmes company, announced its renewed, expanded partnership with Novotech, a leading contract research organisation to continue scaling clinical studies in various therapeutic areas from 2022. Leveraging Rave EDC, Rave RTSM, eCOA and eConsent technology from Medidata, Novotech is equipped with flexible, configurable tools that can address clinical research needs at scale and facilitate accelerated drug and device development in Asia Pacific and the U.S. Since its partnership in 2018, Novotech has doubled its growth and has also acquired CRO companies in APAC and the U.S. as well as invested in advanced DCT and data companies to deliver a seamless CRO platform amidst the increasing demand for clinical trials services in the region. The partnership extends access to a suite of end-to-end solutions from Medidata Clinical Cloud, the industry's only unified platform dedicated to clinical research. It also underscores Medidata and Novotech's commitment to work collaboratively towards accelerating clinical trials and research efficiently, while improving clinical trial timelines and patient experiences. The Medidata Clinical Cloud is the only unified technology platform dedicated to clinical research, with solutions that leverage centralized data to address the holistic research process from start to finish. With the physical limitations and fragmentation of healthcare ecosystems caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for digital integration for accelerated clinical development is crucial, and a unified platform allows for streamlined management of studies, sites, users, and access from a single location. "The pandemic has underscored the importance of redesigning how trials are run, with more stakeholders realising the vital role that technology plays in clinical development. Medidata is pleased to continue our strong partnership with Novotech and is dedicated to providing support in their acceleration of clinical studies. Working with leading technologies, we can deliver better patient experiences and accelerate drug development in the new normal in clinical research." Edwin Ng, Senior Vice President, Asia Pacific, Medidata Andries Claassen, Senior Director Biometrics, Novotech, added, "We are excited to continue our partnership with Medidata, with their sustained support in driving clinical research and business growth with customers. Novotech has always invested heavily in the latest technology to provide our clients with better data visibility for improved decision-making. Together, we will help sponsors deliver more efficient, effective, and scalable trials." Medidata is a wholly owned subsidiary of Dassault Systèmes, which with its 3DEXPERIENCE platform is positioned to lead the digital transformation of life sciences in the age of personalized medicine with the first end-to-end scientific and business platform, from research to commercialization. About Medidata Medidata is leading the digital transformation of life sciences, creating hope for millions of patients. Medidata helps generate the evidence and insights to help pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device and diagnostics companies, and academic researchers accelerate value, minimize risk, and optimize outcomes. More than one million registered users across 2,000+ customers and partners access the world's most trusted platform for clinical development, commercial, and real-world data. Medidata, a Dassault Systèmes company (Euronext Paris: FR0014003TT8, DSY.PA), is headquartered in New York City and has offices around the world to meet the needs of its customers. About Dassault Systèmes Dassault Systèmes, the 3DEXPERIENCE Company, is a catalyst for human progress. We provide business and people with collaborative 3D virtual environments to imagine sustainable innovations. By creating virtual twin experiences of the real world with our 3DEXPERIENCE platform and applications, our customers push the boundaries of innovation, learning and production to achieve a more sustainable world for patients, citizens, and consumers. Dassault Systèmes brings value to more than 300,000 customers of all sizes, in all industries, in more than 140 countries. 3DEXPERIENCE, the Compass icon, the 3DS logo, CATIA, BIOVIA, GEOVIA, SOLIDWORKS, 3DVIA, ENOVIA, NETVIBES, MEDIDATA, CENTRIC PLM, 3DEXCITE, SIMULIA, DELMIA, and IFWE are commercial trademarks or registered trademarks of Dassault Systèmes, a French "société européenne" (Versailles Commercial Register # B 322 306 440), or its subsidiaries in the United States and/or other countries. About Novotech Novotech is the leading Asia Pacific biotech specialist CRO with labs, phase I facilities, and drug development consulting services. Novotech has accumulated experience in over 3,700 clinical projects, including Phase I to Phase IV clinical trials and bioequivalence studies. Novotech is positioned to serve biopharmaceutical clients conducting clinical trials in Asia and globally and serves biotechs globally leveraging deep relationships built with hundreds of Asia-Pacific sites over the last 25 years. As of May 2022, Novotech has over 2,500 FTEs working across our offices in 12 geographies in Asia-Pacific and the United States.

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Spotlight

For immuno-oncology research and the hunt for new immunotherapies, scientists are required to reliably quantify the functions and interactions of cancer cells and immune cells. Cell proliferation assays of tumor growth are a mainstay. Activation and proliferation assays for immune cells are also used to study how the body mobilizes its forces against invading cancers. Readouts of cell migration, the underlying process for the spread and invasion of tumors as well as the directional movement of immune cells toward tumors are also key. Perhaps most importantly, co-culture assays are deployed to quantify the killing and clearance of tumor cells by the immune system.

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