ramarketing review: Highlights, insights & spotlights – April

28th April, 2023

Bringing you insight from our in-house sector experts, the ramarketing review offers vital industry knowledge to keep you in the know, featuring a different ramarketing expert to deliver headline highlights.

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Introducing April’s sector expert…

Dr Caitlin Richardson PhD

Caitlin joined ramarketing as a Senior Scientific Content Specialist and uses her scientific background to deliver technically accurate and engaging content that aligns with the strategic goals of our biopharma and pharmaceutical clients.

Working within the medical device and biopharmaceutical companies as a researcher in downstream processing departments, Dr Richardson applied her in-depth scientific knowledge and analytical skills to optimise protein purification. As a result, she has a comprehensive understanding of the requirements and processes involved in developing diagnostic kits, drug substances, and drug products.

Enjoy April’s news roundup & Caitlin’s commentary on the headlines impacting companies operating inside outsourcing

AI-Proofing Workflows in Drug Development

2023 is primed to be a year filled with technological advancement, with recent innovations enabling the release of the revolutionary chatbot, ChatGPT. Leading visionaries worldwide have been left contemplating how artificial intelligence (AI) could be applied to their own sectors, including biopharma.

Offering the potential to optimize different stages of the drug development process, including drug target identification, molecule design, and toxicity prediction, AI could transform therapeutic production. The benefits boasted by AI utilization, including faster and more efficient drug discovery, reduced costs, and increased drug approval success rates have prompted a surge in AI markets. Estimated at a value of $1.1 billion in 2022, the global AI in drug discovery market is poised to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 29.6% between 2023 and 2030.[1]

Actualizing the promise of AI in drug discovery and development, however, will rely on the biopharma and pharma sectors overcoming the unique challenges of its implementation. From the need for large amounts of high-quality research and patient data to the difficulty of integrating AI with existing workflows, it is unlikely the path to AI transformation will be smooth for the biopharma and pharma industries.

A new biotech wants to ease a bottleneck in cell and gene therapy production

Continuing the theme of new technologies, innovations in the cell and gene therapy (C&GT) space continue to further the reach of these ground-breaking medicines. In a bid to alleviate the time and costs involved in using the traditional vehicle for gene delivery (viral vectors) into cells, VintaiBio is developing a new type of vector based on a non-viral delivery system using a lipid nanoparticle (LNP). Although non-viral vectors explored in the past have not lived up to the efficiency of their viral counterparts, VintaiBio’s vector shows promise in achieving high levels of gene delivery and expression. If proven successful in clinical trials, this delivery system could enable the acceleration of C&GT development and manufacturing.

Ginkgo grows its gene therapy offerings with StrideBio deal

Further advances in the C&GT space are being seen in the development of novel capsids – the protein shells that protect the genetic material in viral vectors. The use of novel capsids could lead to more effective and safer gene therapies, as it could enable better targeting of specific tissues and reduce the risk of immune reactions. 

A partnership between Ginkgo Bioworks and StrideBio aims to leverage the formers’ custom capsid designing and producing platform and the latter’s viral vectors development capabilities to produce new gene therapies. The partnership represents an important development in the field of gene therapy potentially leading to the development of more effective treatments for genetic diseases.

In the coming year, we can expect to see the impact of many innovative technologies across the C&GT space. 


[1] https://www.grandviewresearch.com/industry-analysis/artificial-intelligence-drug-discovery-market

Other pharma and biotech news from April:

Vertex/CRISPR’s gene editing therapy cost-effective at $1.9 million – pricing review group

Following other gene therapies crossing the million-dollar mark in recent years, Vertex/CRISPR’s one-dose gene editing therapy for sickle cell disease would be considered cost-effective if priced at $1.9 million. 

Solving cell and gene therapy development problems

Computational and AI advancements are providing C%GT developers with proactive solutions to process design inefficiencies. 

Function Oncology raises $28M to use CRISPR to tailor cancer diagnosis and treatment

A startup focusing on developing CRISPR-based cancer therapies, Function Oncology, has raised $28 million in funding to advance its research and expand its team.

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