Madrid, 20th September 2016.– Farma-Biotech’s collaboration program, which promotes collaboration in the pharmaceutical industry with small biotech companies, academia, hospitals and R&D, celebrates five years of great success. During this period, they have selected one hundred potentially suitable projects for the development of new medicines and therapeutic solutions, from amongst more than 400 received proposals. FARMAINDUSTRIA launched this initiative in 2011 with the aim to provide the necessary information and boost potential collaborations with pharmaceutical companies, with both public and private stakeholders.
The meeting ‘Good practices in the Farma-Biotech program’, in the context of Biospain 2016, will be held in Bilbao on Friday 30th September, from 09.00 to 12.00. It aims to take stock of the work carried out at this time and review, and spread, some of the best practices developed in this initiative. In the course of this session participants will learn, in detail, the point of view of all public and private stakeholders involved in this project. For the roundtable, it is expected that, María Aguirre; Director of Research and Health Innovation of the Basque Government, Anabel Sanz; Director of Technology Transfer National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO) and representatives of pharmaceutical companies and biotechnology companies, will all participate.
The way in which Farma-Biotech operates is simple. Each year, the FARMAINDUSTRIA team seeks, receives and analyzes numerous projects in development, from both small Spanish biotechnology companies and research centres, to public and private hospitals. Between 2011 and 2015 there have been 14 days joint work, bringing together developers and companies and which have presented 102 projects selected from 412 proposals received. The fifteenth day of collaboration, will take place in Madrid on November 15th and it is then that eight new projects, selected from 54 proposals received in the first half of 2016 advanced research, will be presented.
Cancer, main therapeutic area
The therapeutic areas most explored amongst the projects covered under this program, are consistent with the main efforts of the pharmaceutical industry in the field of new product development. Cancer ranks first in terms of received proposals, followed by the developments related to the central nervous system and, in smaller numbers, autoimmune diseases, inflammatory and infectious diseases.
This collaborative program by Farma-Biotech is part of the pharmaceutical industry’s collaboration on initiatives with R&D centres, hospitals, research groups and small businesses which FARMAINDUSTRIA has been developing under the umbrella, ‘Platform for Innovative Medicines’. In this context, the BEST Project is also specifically highlighted – the initiative for excellence in clinical drug research launched in 2004 to promote the development of clinical trials in our country and, has allowed in recent years, for Spain to turn into an attractive country for clinical research. In just over a decade, BEST has recorded the completion of 2,615 trials involving 148,995 patients.
In order to advance and deepen the field of external collaboration, FARMAINDUSTRIA is also this year working in search of new opportunities in the field of R&D&i with the Ministry of Economy, Innovation and Competitiveness. Through the Ministry of Research, Development and Innovation, the Association will facilitate the development of potential agreements between pharmaceutical companies and centres of excellence, Severo Ochoa and units of excellence, María de Maeztu. The first milestone in this regard was the joint work day held on July 20th in Madrid, whose success has encouraged the start of planning new meetings.
All these initiatives are good examples of the commitment of the pharmaceutical industry with regards to the development of innovative projects in the search for health solutions. This sector is the Spanish leader in investment in this particular area, as evidenced by the recently published survey of R&D activities produced each year by FARMAINDUSTRIA between its members. Pharmaceutical companies invested €1,004m in research and development projects during 2015, a figure that represents an increase of 5.7% compared to 2014 (€950m), the largest annual increase in the last seven years. Notably, €416m went to external contracts with hospitals, academia and research centres.