Gene Therapy Has Broad Application in Biopharma
Sky’s the limit for biopharmaceutical companies working in the space of gene therapy. Just ask Robert Habib, CEO of MiNA Therapeutics, the London-based biotech that has been developing a promising small activating RNA (saRNA) technology since 2008.
Not only has MiNA’s technology landed a collaboration with AstraZeneca, it has also established alliances with big pharma companies Bayer and Merck, who are trialling the use of its saRNA product, MTL-CEBPA, as an adjunct to their own therapies targeting cancerous lesions and solid tumours of the liver.
As if MiNA’s reach weren’t broad enough, just last month the company announced their new partnership with Servier (DeFeudis, 2021). What’s interesting is that MiNA has, until now, maintained a focus on notoriously resistant liver diseases. However, Servier works in different therapeutic spaces entirely, and they have chosen to begin testing MiNA’s technology in the treatment of neurological disorders.
Since the turn of the century, the application of gene therapy to treat various diseases has shown promise. “Cancer, infectious diseases, cardiac disease, neurological disorders and…inherited conditions are among the areas into which gene therapy research is being carried out” (Stoner, 2009, p. 270). What we are now beginning to see a few decades later is that this research has shown tremendous promise.
Biotechs working within the gene therapy space will be key players in the successful development of marketable products in other specialty fields of research. Gene therapy is being used in everything from vaccine development for illnesses such as HIV and influenza, to treating neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. It has also shown optimistic outcomes in clinical trials for the treatment of inherited diseases such as cystic fibrosis and Haemophilia.
“If you are a biotech developing gene therapies, pharmaceutical companies and smaller biotechs working in different niches can benefit from your expertise,” says Devesh Malhi of G&E Partners Talent Management Agency. “It’s a game changer in the biopharmaceutical industry significant enough that I think we should expect to see some industry shifts taking place over the next several years. For example biotech companies outpacing big pharma in terms of developing viable product.”
So what does this mean for executive search firms? When it comes to finding the perfect biotech executive leader, the expertise of candidates seeking executive biotech roles are not as cut and dry in the life sciences industries as they may be in other sectors. Highly sought after candidates are going to have a diverse skillset that is informed by various specialties.
Mergers and partnerships between biotechs; and the increasing popularity of big pharma seeking access to technology that gene therapy biotechs have to offer attracts more investment and bigger budgets, increasing the likelihood of expansion and funding capacity for new hires. For the best biotech recruiters, it’s fulfilling to know that skilled placement of candidates in executive biotech roles is furthering progress in the invention and delivery of groundbreaking therapies.
If you’re interested in learning more about G&E Partners’ Talent Management Approach to executive search, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
DeFeudis, N. (21 January 2021). Once laser focused on liver, MiNA takes swing at neurology with Servier’s backing. Endpoints News. https://endpts.com/once-laser-focused-on-liver-mina-takes-swing-at-neurology-with-serviers-backing/
Stoner, N. (2009). Gene therapy applications. Clinical Pharmacist, 1, 270-273.