ARTICLES BY ERIN HARRIS
DEI In CGT1/21/2022
Back in 2020, I wrote an article for Cell & Gene’s sister publication, Life Science Leader magazine, on the state of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the life sciences industry. I had the pleasure of working with Eurofins’ Beth DiPaolo, PhRMA’s Yolanda Hutchins; EMD Serono’s Eileen Martin; MassBio’s Edie Stringfellow; and Toft Group Executive Search’s Robin Toft for that article to learn actionable ways to develop, implement, and require a diverse and inclusive working environment that drives innovation and profitability. Each of the leaders provided a detailed and pragmatic blueprint for all aspects of the life sciences industry so that no group is left behind. Here’s the link to the article again, because it’s that important.
What To Expect In 2022 In The CGT Sector1/12/2022
It’s no secret that the cell and gene therapy sector suffered some setbacks as a result of Covid-19. But with 2022 in full swing, here are four things to keep your eyes on that will be important this year in the world of cell and gene therapy.
AVROBIO, Novartis Gene Therapies On Patient Advocacy12/21/2021
During episode 12 of Cell & Gene: The Podcast, I had the opportunity to talk to AVROBIO’s Global Head, Patient Advocacy & Engagement, Fernanda Copeland, about the critical need to incorporate community education and patient feedback into the development and recruitment in clinical trials in order to improve them. During our discussion, Copeland explains that patient advocacy team needs to go to where the patients already are. For example, the company often starts where the manufacturers are or where the best reimbursement opportunities exist as these are rare diseases and the standard of care is different in every country, in every province.
Astellas’ Active Strategy to Gain Access to New Technologies12/13/2021
AIRM’s President, Hide Goto, Ph.D., and I discussed the collaboration and M&A deals as well as its innovation hubs in detail.
What To Expect From Cell Therapy And Gene Therapy In 2022 And Beyond12/2/2021
From innovations in clinical development and manufacturing to the evaluation of investigational cell and gene therapies (CGTs), subject matter experts from Cellectis and Immatics share a brief look back on 2021 and a detailed glimpse into the near future of gene therapy and cell therapy respectively.
Inside Carisma Therapeutics’ CT-050811/23/2021
Last year, I caught up with Michael Klichinsky, Ph.D. co-founder and VP of discovery and research at Carisma Therapeutics to discuss its then preclinical findings indicate that CAR-M therapy could overcome the key challenges that cell therapies have encountered with solid tumors — limited trafficking to the tumor site, an immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment, and the heterogeneous expression of tumor-associated antigens. In that article, among other things, Dr. Klichinsky and I discussed the challenges the cell and gene therapy sector faces when it comes to solid tumors. He explained that while it is clear that CAR-T cells are very good at killing hematologic malignancies (for example, B-cell acute lymphoid leukemia and B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphomas) in patients, they have a hard time against solid tumors.
Inside Novome Biotechnologies’ Phase 1 Study of NOV-00111/22/2021
Novome Biotechnologies recently announced positive results from a Phase 1 study of orally administered NOV-001 in healthy volunteers. The Phase 1 study demonstrated the ability to safely colonize the human gut with a therapeutically engineered microbe and control its abundance via once-daily dosing of a prebiotic control molecule. Based on these results, Novome intends to commence a Phase 2a study to evaluate preliminary efficacy in patients with enteric hyperoxaluria.
CGTs for Heart Disease11/17/2021
Although several conventional small-molecule treatments are available for common cardiovascular problems, cell and gene therapies are a potential treatment option for acquired and inherited cardiovascular diseases that remain with unmet clinical needs.
Inside Canavan Disease With BridgeBio’s Dr. Eric David10/29/2021
Canavan disease is rare genetic neurological disorder characterized by the spongy degeneration of the white matter in the brain. Affected infants may appear normal at birth, but usually develop symptoms between 3-6 months of age. According to National Organization for Rare Diseases (NORD), most affected children develop life-threatening complications by 10 years of age. Canavan disease occurs because of mutations in the aspartoacylase (ASPA) gene that affects the breakdown (metabolism) of the N-acetylaspartic acid (NNA). It is inherited as an autosomal recessive condition.
Cell & Gene: The Podcast Breaks Down Patient Engagement With Novartis Gene Therapies10/29/2021
If you haven’t had the opportunity to listen to Episode 9 of Cell & Gene: The Podcast, be sure to do so, as Novartis Gene Therapies’ VP of U.S. Patient Advocacy and Government Affairs and Cell & Gene Editorial Advisory Board member, Dr. Amy Nicole Nayar, thoughtfully covers why Cell & Gene readers do what they do every single day — the patient.