Biotech gains ground in NYC: Sprawl­ing re­search cen­ter planned in $1.6B Mid­town project

Mak­ing good on its promise to inch its way to­ward biotech hub sta­tus, New York City is ded­i­cat­ing a mas­sive space for life sci­ence com­pa­nies to put down roots in a 105-year-old struc­ture in Mid­town.

Com­mer­cial re­al es­tate de­vel­op­ers have been work­ing to make over the old Far­ley Post Of­fice Build­ing, a Ro­man clas­sic struc­ture that spans two city blocks, in­to an elab­o­rate tran­sit hub to be called the Moyni­han Train Hall. Now, the two firms be­hind the $1.6 bil­lion over­haul have hired a bro­ker with ex­ten­sive knowl­edge of Boston’s re­al es­tate mar­ket and have de­vel­oped a brochure for the train hall that mar­kets the struc­ture to the life sci­ence in­dus­try.

David Green­baum

The brochure calls the space “Moyni­han Re­search Cen­ter at Far­ley” and it high­lights po­ten­tial de­signs for lab­o­ra­to­ry and of­fice space. De­vel­op­ers Vor­na­do Re­al­ty Trust and Re­lat­ed Cos, which have a 99-year lease to de­vel­op about 900,000 square feet of of­fice and re­tail space, told the Wall Street Jour­nal that they’re tar­get­ing new in­dus­tries that are rapid­ly grow­ing in the city.

“Just as Google and Face­book have de­cid­ed they need a ma­jor pres­ence in New York, there is the recog­ni­tion by life-sci­ences com­pa­nies that for kids who are the sci­en­tists of the fu­ture, they want to live in ur­ban ar­eas,” David Green­baum, pres­i­dent of Vor­na­do’s New York di­vi­sion, told the WSJ.

This new re­al es­tate project is the lat­est de­vel­op­ment in NYC’s jour­ney to biotech hub sta­tus. The city has seen a boost of life sci­ence ac­tiv­i­ty in re­cent years, thanks to ef­forts made by the state and city to in­cen­tivize biotech to plant roots in New York. The moves ap­pear to be work­ing, with new en­trants set­ting up shop in the city. NYU Lan­gone Med­ical Cen­ter is col­lab­o­rat­ing with Cam­bridge, MA-based Bi­o­Labs to cre­ate a 50,000-square-foot biotech co-work­ing cen­ter on Var­ick Street in Low­er Man­hat­tan. And the Long Is­land City Part­ner­ship is work­ing on a plan for a life sci­ences cen­ter in that Queens dis­trict.

Nan­cy Thorn­ber­ry

And a cou­ple months ago, NYC’s eco­nom­ic de­vel­op­ment group told me it post­ed a “want­ed ad” for an or­ga­ni­za­tion or joint ven­ture to de­vel­op and op­er­ate a life sci­ence R&D cam­pus in the city. New York is putting up $100 mil­lion in city cap­i­tal and city-owned land to spur the project, which has been coined “LifeSci NYC Hub,” the EDC said.

“NYC has proven to be an out­stand­ing place to re­cruit for biotech,” said Kally­ope CEO Nan­cy Thorn­ber­ry, who sits on the ad­vi­so­ry coun­cil for the EDC ef­fort.  “The scene is just be­gin­ning to grow here, and so there’s an un­tapped pool of tal­ent of sci­en­tists from acad­e­mia who are in­ter­est­ed in work­ing in biotech. There’s al­so a num­ber of in­di­vid­u­als want­i­ng to make tran­si­tion from phar­ma to biotech who want to live here in New York.”

Still, Thorn­ber­ry ad­mits the city has had a his­tor­i­cal prob­lem with find­ing space for biotech. WSJ re­ports the city has strug­gled to keep star­tups around as they grow.

New York has on­ly 2.8 mil­lion square feet of rentable lab space, com­pared with New Jer­sey’s 16.2 mil­lion and the 26.8 mil­lion square feet in the greater Boston area, ac­cord­ing to da­ta from the spring of 2017 col­lect­ed by re­al es­tate ser­vices firm JLL.

Im­age: Ren­der­ing of the Far­ley Post Of­fice Build­ing. SOM

As­traZeneca trum­pets the good da­ta they found for Tagris­so in an ad­ju­vant set­ting for NSCLC — but many of the ex­perts aren’t cheer­ing along

AstraZeneca is rolling out the big guns this evening to provide a salute to their ADAURA data on Tagrisso at ASCO.

Cancer R&D chief José Baselga calls the disease-free survival data for their drug in an adjuvant setting of early stage, epidermal growth factor receptor-mutated NSCLC patients following surgery “momentous.” Roy Herbst, the principal investigator out of Yale, calls it “transformative.”

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Pablo Legorreta, founder and CEO of Royalty Pharma AG, speaks at the annual Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California (Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Cap­i­tal­iz­ing Pablo: The world’s biggest drug roy­al­ty buy­er is go­ing pub­lic. And the low-key CEO di­vulges a few se­crets along the way

Pablo Legorreta is one of the most influential players in biopharma you likely never heard of.

Over the last 24 years, Legorreta’s Royalty Pharma group has become, by its own reckoning, the biggest buyer of drug royalties in the world. The CEO and founder has bought up a stake in a lengthy list of the world’s biggest drug franchises, spending $18 billion in the process — $2.2 billion last year alone. And he’s become one of the best-paid execs in the industry, reaping $28 million from the cash flow last year while reserving 20% of the cash flow, less expenses, for himself.

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Paul Hudson, Sanofi CEO (Getty Images)

Sanofi CEO Paul Hud­son has $23B burn­ing a hole in his pock­et. And here are some hints on how he plans to spend that

Sanofi has reaped $11.1 billion after selling off a big chunk of its Regeneron stock at $515 a share. And now everyone on the M&A side of the business is focused on how CEO Paul Hudson plans to spend it.

After getting stung in France for some awkward politicking — suggesting the US was in the front of the line for Sanofi’s vaccines given American financial support for their work, versus little help from European powers — Hudson now has the much more popular task of managing a major cash cache to pull off something in the order of a big bolt-on. Or two.

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The Advance Clinical leadership team: CEO Yvonne Lungershausen, Sandrien Louwaars - Director Business Development Operations, Gabriel Kremmidiotis - Chief Scientific Officer, Ben Edwards - Chief Strategy Officer

How Aus­tralia De­liv­ers Rapid Start-up and 43.5% Re­bate for Ear­ly Phase On­col­o­gy Tri­als

About Avance Clinical

Avance Clinical is an Australian owned Contract Research Organisation that has been providing high-quality clinical research services to the local and international drug development industry for 20 years. They specialise in working with biotech companies to execute Phase 1 and Phase 2 clinical trials to deliver high-quality outcomes fit for global regulatory standards.

As oncology sponsors look internationally to speed-up trials after unprecedented COVID-19 suspensions and delays, Australia, which has led the world in minimizing the pandemic’s impact, stands out as an attractive destination for early phase trials. This in combination with the streamlined regulatory system and the financial benefits including a very favourable exchange rate and the R & D cash rebate makes Australia the perfect location for accelerating biotech clinical programs.

Dan O'Day, Gilead CEO (Andrew Harnik, AP Images)

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No­var­tis jumps in­to Covid-19 vac­cine hunt, as Big Phar­ma and big biotech com­mit to bil­lions of dos­es

After spending most of the pandemic on the sidelines, Novartis is offering its aid in the race to develop a Covid-19 vaccine.

AveXis, the Swiss pharma’s gene therapy subsidiary, has agreed to manufacture the vaccine being developed by Massachusetts Eye and Ear and Massachusetts General Hospital. The biotech will begin manufacturing this month, while the vaccine undergoes further preclinical testing. They’ve agreed to provide the vaccine for free for clinical trials beginning in the second half of 2020, but have not disclosed financials for after.

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Bris­tol My­ers Squibb fi­nal­ly gets in the front­line NSCLC game dom­i­nat­ed by Mer­ck, adding a sec­ond Op­di­vo/Yer­voy-based op­tion

Bristol Myers Squibb may be trailing Merck and Roche in the checkpoint race to treat frontline cases of non-small cell lung cancer, but as it does, it makes sure to bring its best feet forward.

Just days after scoring a landmark NSCLC approval for Opdivo and Yervoy alone for PD-L1 positive patients, the company said the FDA has also OK’d using the two agents with a limited course of chemo regardless of the biomarker status.

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Bryan Roberts, Venrock

Ven­rock sur­vey shows grow­ing recog­ni­tion of coro­n­avirus toll, wan­ing con­fi­dence in ar­rival of vac­cines and treat­ments

When Venrock partner Bryan Roberts went to check the results from their annual survey of healthcare leaders, what he found was an imprint of the pandemic’s slow arrival in America.

The venture firm had sent their form out to hundreds of insurance and health tech executives, investors, officials and academics on February 24 and gave them two weeks to fill it out. No Americans had died at that point but the coronavirus had become enough of a global crisis that they included two questions about the virus, including “Total U.S. deaths in 2020 from the novel coronavirus will be:”.

Roger Perlmutter, Merck R&D chief (YouTube)

UP­DAT­ED: Backed by BAR­DA, Mer­ck jumps in­to Covid-19: buy­ing out a vac­cine, part­ner­ing on an­oth­er and adding an­tivi­ral to the mix

Merck execs are making a triple play in a sudden leap into the R&D campaign against Covid-19. And they have more BARDA cash backing them up on the move.

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