“The Centers for Therapeutic Innovation represents a truly novel open innovation paradigm, combining the unique advantages of top academic research institutions with Pfizer’s leading drug development capabilities and research technologies,” said Mikael Dolsten, M.D., Ph.D., president of Pfizer Worldwide Research & Development. “This new way of engaging leading external scientists is a key component of our R&D strategy. We are excited to pioneer this approach to seek to translate science into novel proofs of mechanism in a more efficient and accelerated manner to better serve patients,” Dr. Dolsten said.
Anthony Coyle, Ph.D., will head Pfizer’s Global Centers for Therapeutic Innovation, headquartered in Cambridge, Mass. Dr. Coyle brings extensive knowledge of the full drug development process to this initiative. As former Vice President and Global Head of Respiratory, Inflammation, and Autoimmune Research at MedImmune Biologics, a division of AstraZeneca, he advanced research and the clinical biologics pipeline.
“With his keen sense of biotechnology culture, strong scientific leadership and history of building successful collaborations, Anthony Coyle is the ideal person to lead the Centers for Therapeutic Innovation,” said Jose-Carlos Gutierrez-Ramos, Ph.D., Pfizer’s senior vice president of Worldwide BioTherapeutics Research and Development. “This new model complements the venture capitalist – funded biotech start up and has the potential to catalyze the transformation of global biomedical drug discovery by advancing scientific breakthroughs in translational medicine.”
A key aspect of the Centers for Therapeutic Innovation is Pfizer’s commitment to establish local Centers at each partner site that enable Pfizer and academic medical center teams to work side by side. Pfizer will also make available its proprietary antibody libraries and advanced research tools along with technical support across the development process. In addition to funding pre-clinical and clinical development programs, Pfizer will offer its partners equitable intellectual property and ownership rights to support continued experimentation and exploration, as well as broad rights to publication. Milestone payments and royalties related to the advancement of sponsored programs will also be granted. In return, Pfizer will have the opportunity to potentially broaden its pipeline with novel and highly differentiated candidate drugs to treat diseases of high unmet medical need.
The Centers for Therapeutic Innovation will initially focus on collaborations within the U.S. and build the network at other U.S.-based medical institutions and is expected to expand into Europe and Asia in 2012. Each Center will be governed by a Joint Steering Committee comprised of Pfizer and academic medical center representatives who will provide leadership and evaluate the success of each program through discovery and early stage clinical development.
“This is an excellent example of how we can fundamentally improve the process of translating research into better drugs by bringing all of the people involved to the same table,” said Jeffrey A. Bluestone, Ph.D., UCSF executive vice chancellor and provost, and the A.W. and Mary Margaret Clausen Distinguished Professor in Metabolism and Endocrinology at UCSF. “This partnership takes advantage of the expertise in both camps to create new ways to develop drugs that have the potential to achieve their most important goal – improving patient health.”
“UCSF is a world-class academic medical center with a strong focus on both basic science and clinical research, which is why Pfizer is partnering with them on this initiative. Ultimately, we believe this could create significant benefit for the patient, for investigators, and for each institution,” said Dr. Gutierrez-Ramos.
About the University of California, San Francisco: UCSF is a leading university dedicated to promoting health worldwide through advanced biomedical research, graduate-level education in the life sciences and health professions, and excellence in patient care. For further information, visit www.ucsf.edu.
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