Bon appetit: Cellectis CEO Choulika hosts a gene-edited feast; CRO Medpace adding 650 staffers

Andre Choulika

Andre Choulika, Cellectis

Cellectis CEO André Choulika loves nothing better than celebrating the pioneering work he’s planning to do with gene editing and next-gen CAR-T. But he also runs an ag bio outfit called Calyxt which plans to bring the gene editing revolution into the food supply. And what better way to highlight that work than the world’s first feast involving gene-edited foods. According to the PR, the dinner in New York required “a six-month preparation time entrusted to The Lab-Ducasse Conseil’s chefs and experts with a series of trials where the ingredients were cooked and tasted in a variety of ways. Attendees included university professors, doctors, reporters, celebrities, entrepreneurs and key opinion leaders.”

What does Endpoints News‘ Marco “Hot Twitter Bot”Teva’s drug repurposing strategy, and Celgene’s new drug safety offering all have in common? They’re all powered by Watson, an umbrella term employed by IBM to personify a disparate collection of AI techniques customized by its engineers for highly specific business applications. We use Watson at Endpoints to read tens of thousands of tweets and websites daily to surface the most viral information, assisting editors in the creation of this newsletter. Celgene wants high-volume automated analysis of disparate sources of data related to drug safety. These are problems any highly technical team armed with cloud computing credits could roll internally — there are no industry-wide standards for what constitutes ‘cognitive computing’, ‘artificial intelligence’, or ‘deep learning’. Celgene and Teva are betting those are all functions best suited for brand name consultants to come in and collaborate on with instead.

Execs for the CRO Medpace has told Ohio economic development officials that they plan to add 650 workers and invest $7 million into its operations.

France’s Genfit has raised €44.6 through the sale of shares. Combined with a €33.9 million private placement, the biotech has now raised €78.5 million for its clinical work on NASH.

Eisai has launched a Phase III study for its BACE drug E2609 in patients with early-stage Alzheimer’s.

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Sr. Manager, Regulatory Affairs, CMC
CytomX Therapeutics San Francisco, CA
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