The Alliance

The Weekly Dose | 03.13.20

March 13, 2020 11:24 am

The World Health Organization has declared COVID-19 a pandemic. We know there currently are more questions than answers right now. Below we have the latest on what biopharmaceutical industry is doing to meet the challenge, and if we can help answer your questions—or connect you to someone who can—please email us


We look forward to working with you.



Patrick O’Connor – Executive Director

Rosemarie Calabro Tully – Communications Director




- Exciting reporting by @statnews: there’s been mass mobilization across the drug industry to address #coronavirus. We’re optimistic about the efforts, using preventative measures like #vaccines and various #treatment options to more quickly cure #patients. Click here to RT.  


- Great article by Robert Reiss in @Forbes: pharma and tech companies are utilizing #artificalintelligence to lower both #drugprices and development time significantly, better discovering new #treatment options for #patients with rare diseases. Click here to RT.




Check out and share on Twitter our latest blog posts:


- Jumping To Meet The Threat Of COVID-19. As COVID-19 spreads globally, biopharmaceutical companies are hard at work to quickly develop treatments or vaccines. We look at the status of current research and development stands. Click here to read the full blog post. Share on Twitter here.


- A Look Beyond 2020. As the 2020 candidate field narrows, we look at the president and his potential challengers when it comes to innovation and drug prices. From price caps to importing medicine from Canada, we look at what the candidates have been saying. Click here to read the full blog post. Share on Twitter here.




- Brigham And Women’s Hospital President: Government Labs Don’t Generate Treatments. Elizabeth Nabel, president of Brigham Health and its Brigham and Women’s Hospital, has written: “Basic scientific research, which is often subsidized by the federal government through the National Institutes for Health, is absolutely critical to biomedical innovation. During my time leading the NIH’s National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute – which allocates about $3 billion in research grants each year – our team made great progress in better understanding how to treat and diagnose chronic diseases. But government labs don’t turn promising insights into actual treatments. Often, it’s the small, venture-backed biomedical companies, increasingly in collaboration with the nation’s top academic medical centers, that do.”


- A Lot Of People Don’t Like The Idea Of Drug Importation. A Lot. STAT News reports: “Pharmacists from Vermont to Alabama, biotechnology companies from coast to coast, sheriffs, and even upset Canadians all weighed in in recent weeks to oppose the Trump administration’s plan. More than 900 individuals also took part in a letter-writing campaign organized by the Partnership for Safe Medicines, an anti-importation nonprofit with deep ties to the drug industry.” IPWatchdog also says the Trump administration’s importation plan “constitutes an assault on private intellectual property rights.” And PhRMA has submitted comments on the administration’s proposal.


- New Report: Almost 400 Gene Therapies Under Development. According to a new report from PhRMA, there are 362 investigational cell and gene therapies currently in clinical development, a 20 percentincrease since 2018. These include therapies to address Duchenne muscular dystrophy, hemophilia, and to kill myeloma cells.


- New Hope For Patients With Liver Cancer. Reuters reports: “Bristol Myers Squibb’s combination of its immunotherapies, Opdivo and Yervoy, to treat a type of liver cancer received U.S. regulatory approval, the drugmaker said. … The therapy received the Food and Drug Administration’s accelerated approval to treat patients with hepatocellular carcinoma, who have previously been administered sorafenib, the current standard of care.”




According to the Pacific Research Institute’s Sally Pipes:


“Once these price controls, taxes, and other penalties begin depleting their revenue, firms will curtail research and development — and thus lay off American workers. According to a recent poll, 45 percent of drug firms said that ‘significant’ reductions in research and development could force immediate job cuts and facility closures. The ramifications of that would ripple across the entire U.S. economy.”v