May 2009, Issue 117
to our bi-weekly
of Amsterdam Journal.
"Biomedicine is booming.
Recent advances in Genomics, Systems Biology, Nanomedicine, Tissue Engineering,
Biophotonics and other disciplines have not only raised hopes for new
drugs and diagnostics, but have also made it more likely than ever that
real innovative products for improving Human Health will be available
within 3-8 years.
The announcement on March 6 of this year that US president Obama ends
Bushs ban on embryo stem cell research will allow US researchers
to catch up with their EU and Far-East colleagues, who were restricted
in finding good stem cell sources for purposes of Tissue Engineering.
Microarray technology makes it possible and feasible to quickly monitor
thousands of potentially active compounds in their ability to bind to
receptors or affect cell metabolism, leading to new drugs.
Through genomics the expression of countless genes can be measured and
the results can be used to develop personalized medicine, probiotics
or functional foods.Biophotonics has become an extremely sensitive tool
to support medical imaging on a molecular scale, leading to earlier
diagnostics in cancer research, allowing for earlier intervention.
The presentations will focus on the above developments and their role
in maintaining and improving human health."
Event concept: Gerhard Mulder,
In case you
would like to hear more and also share your thoughts, then email us
or visit our next event about
future of BioMed
on May 28. Location:
De Ruyterkade 5, 1013 AA Amsterdam [Building
of the Chamber of Commerce]
And a special announcement:
Club of Amsterdam visits the
future of Connectivity
Quotes from the Healthcare Manifesto by
- the European Association for Bioindustries
biotechnology refers to a medicinal or diagnostic product or a
vaccine that consists of, or has been produced in, living organisms
and may be manufactured via recombinant technology. This technology
has a tremendous impact on meeting the needs of patients and their
families as it not only encompasses medicines and diagnostics
that are manufactured using a biotechnological process, but also
gene and cell therapies and tissue engineered products.
Today, the majority of innovative medicines, whether manufactured
using biotechnology or via a chemical synthesis like a traditional
small molecule medicine, and many diagnostic products, are made
available by applying modern biotechnology in their development
and/or manufacturing processes."
Did you know that
- More than 350
million patients have benefited from approved medicines manufactured
through biotechnology and gene technology to treat or prevent
heart attacks, stroke, multiple sclerosis, breast cancer, cystic
fibrosis, leukaemia, hepatitis, diabetes and other diseases, including
- Today, more than
600 new biotech medicines and vaccines are being tested
for more than 100 diseases pushing the frontiers of science. Biotech
medicines are estimated to account for more than 20% of all marketed
medicines and about half of all medicines in the pipeline.
- The industry in
Europe in 2007 comprised more than 1,700 companies and
represented a market worth more than €17 billion.
- Healthcare biotechnology
continues to grow annually at an average rate of 20% (more than
double that of traditional pharma) and that it is 7 times larger
than it was 10 years ago.
- Currently, the leading
classes of biotech therapies are growth factors for blood cells
(used in treating anemia resulting from chronic kidney disease,
from chemotherapy and radiation treatments, and from other critical
illnesses such as heart failure); cancer treatments (new and targeted
treatments for cancers - such as the use of monoclonal antibodies),
treatment of autoimmune diseases, enzyme replacement therapies
to treat rare diseases and anti-diabetic therapies.
- For the first time
in the history of human healthcare, biotechnology is enabling
the development and manufacturing of therapies for a number of
rare and very rare genetic diseases, collectively affecting some
20 to 30 million Europeans and their families.
- Biotechnology has
a major impact on the provision of safe and effective vaccines
against infectious diseases, and provides safer recombinant alternatives
to proteins derived from human blood or tissue.
In 2004, the European Commission ambitiously launched a series
of reforms at national and European level aimed at making the
European Union (EU) the most dynamic and competitive knowledge
based economy in the world by 2010.
To support this, biotechnology and healthcare became a high priority
on the political agenda of both the Member States and of the European
Union. Innovation in these two areas been and will continue to
be a key element in achieving this goal. However,
policies in these two areas need to become more interlinked, as
practically all future medicines and therapies will use healthcare
biotechnology in the R&D process and/or in manufacturing.
EuropaBio calls for healthcare systems in Europe that are committed
to put the patient at the centre of any medical, social, economical
and ethical consideration. Budgetary considerations should be
secondary to this overarching political mandate and its
Designing policy to foster innovation in biotechnology is not
an easy task, however; biotechnology is a complex field with complex
potential outcomes and impacts while new insights need to be thoroughly
discussed with and within society. The policy-making process faces
a number of further challenges when transferred to the healthcare
sector including a small knowledge base mostly found within
the companies themselves, complex ideas to pass on to patients,
new approaches to promote development of treatments for unmet
but rare medical needs, treating diseases that introduce new concepts
and paradigms into patient/physician relationships (e.g.: monoclonal
antibodies and personalised medicine), a significant SME (Small
and Medium-Size Enterprises) base, and potentially polarising
issues (such as some stem cell-based therapies).
The EU addresses this issue through a range of initiatives such
as the introduction of the orphan medicinal products regulation
to foster development of medicines to treat rare diseases, opening
an SME office at the EMEA and regulating advanced therapies
(cell, gene and tissue therapies).
EuropaBio was a full member of the High Level Pharmaceutical Forum
for its expert input in these areas. 2009/10 will see a continuation
of these initiatives. Building on the EuropaBio Healthcare Vision,
this Manifesto sets out how EuropaBio will contribute to this
process of policy development, as well as regulatory implementation,
in 2009/10. These actions are laid out in the Healthcare Council
Mission, four areas that will need to be addressed in order to
handle the healthcare innovations expected over the next few years
that will provide answers to unmet medical needs.
You can download the
The Invisible Revolution
future of BioMed
May 28, 2009
De Ruyterkade 5, 1013 AA Amsterdam
[Building of the Chamber of Commerce]
The speakers and topics are
Director, Personal Space Technologies
Using Virtual Reality (VR) to improve human health
Inventions to Innovation: Lessons from Medical Devices
van de Wiel,
Regulatory Affairs Manager, DSM Food Specialties
Nutrition, an emerging business area
Our moderator is Gerhard
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