Posts Tagged Pearl Therapeutics
Rakeysh Mehra, famed Bollywood Filmmaker will speak at TiEcon 2014
Rakeysh Mehra, highly acclaimed Bollywood Filmmaker & Screenwriter, will speak at TiEcon 2014. Have you registered? You can register as my guest through the link http://tinyurl.com/kr2hkcw and enter code “TiEvalue” to get $100 off.
The process of filmmaking begins with a great story and then the filmmaker or the producer needs to work with the screenwriter to develop the story or screenplay they have just purchased. Rakeysh Mehra is an Indian filmmaker and screenwriter, known for writing and directing such films as Rang De Basanti (he won Best Director Filmfare Award for it in 2006) and directing blockbuster “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag”, starring Farhan Akhtar as Milkha Singh, India’s legendary runner (here’s link to my review http://bit.ly/1cUwG4o). “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag” acquired international fame and was nominated for 10 awards. Obtaining the right script and developing it into a good screenplay and then directing it into a successful film, is a highly challenging process, in the cut throat film world. One needs to understand and develop the characters, ensure the dialogues are not lame, understand the story structure, identify the genre or the blend of genres and Mehra is brilliant, with each of the steps of filmmaking.
Currently, India, the largest democracy in the world, is busy with the process of deciding its new leader. Voting is in full swing, in India. Mehra has been a critic of the vote bank politics and currently he is campaigning to introduce e-voting to facilitate voting by travelers. Mehra is also deeply committed to children and the education system in India. Regarding “Bhaag Milkha Baag”, Mehra said that to see the movie connect with children as young as six and eight, was the biggest part of his success with the movie that he is proud of. He has criticized marks-driven, education system in India saying that it emphasizes test scores over actual learning and achievement. Perhaps his next movie will address this issue? The filmmaker was location hunting recently in Jodhpur, for his upcoming film. Will there be announcements? Mehra will give keynote address on the morning of day 2 of the conference.
See discount codes to register for TiEcon 2014, www.tiecon.org and for Health Technology Forum
www.tiecon.org – If you are a professional in #healthIT, #digital health, #internetofthings, #cloud, #bigdata or related, then this is the conference, you don’t want to miss – It offers a fabulous opportunity to network with 3000+ professionals and listen to top notch speakers and panelists. Register for #TiEcon (May 16 & 17 at Santa ClaraConvention Center) as my guest, at link http://tinyurl.com/kr2hkcw & enter promo code tievalue to get $100 discount.
Healthtechnology Forum conference http://www.healthtechnologyforum.com, focused on exploring pathways to sustainable health, is on May 20 in SF. Please register for the conference as my friend, with the discount code “HTF14-FriendOfOrganizer” and send me your first & last name at wd_darshana at hotmail dot com, to get $150 off the price of the ticket. Also check out & participate in code-a-thon on patient engagement, for May 8. Over 20K+ in prizes.
JOBS: are posted at the link http://bit.ly/1o85CTM
Healthcare Innovation & Entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley, CA
Posted by Darshana V. Nadkarni, Ph.D. in Big Data -Cloud -IoT-Software -Mobile -Entrepreneurship, Biotech - Medical Device - Life Science - Healthcare on April 16, 2014
Life Science Industry gearing up for Innovation: Code-a-thon (Health Technology Forum), TiEcon, EPPIC event
Code-a-thons are fun and also highly productive live events that bring together developers, designers, innovators and entrepreneurs, brimming with new and exciting ideas on applications and tools for any given problem. Health Technology Forum in San Francisco was formed with a mission to improve healthcare through technology. In 2013, HTF organized a very successful code-a-thon that focused on serving the needs of the underserved populations. This year again, HTF has organized a code-a-thon to precede (by about a week to 10 days) its annual conference focused around the theme of Pathways to Sustainable Health, on May 20, at Parc 55, Wyndham Hotel, SF. Additionally, HTF has proposed a series of events to follow the weekend code-a-thon challenge, including a unique second phase to enable the winning team to be placed on-site at one or more safety-net hospitals.
So how do code-a-thons help spur innovation? These short and focused events often result in the rapid development of breakthrough concepts and working prototype applications. Code-a-thons highlight a problem in need of a solution. This spotlighting of the problem, with clarity around its challenges and opportunities, helps the problem to remain the primary focus of innovation, and not the technology. This is a good mental discipline for enthusiastic bright innovators who tend to fall in love with their own idea, and often fail to pay heed to the needs of the market. The ideas and technologies that come out of code-a-thons often lead to creation of actual products that can be deployed in the marketplace. Further, if these innovators would receive coaching from stakeholders within the hospital centers then it is inevitable that the positive impact will be enormous and immediate, in creating new innovative solutions, for sustainable healthcare. Few can argue that our healthcare system needs an overhaul, and something that will greatly impact the transformation in the healthcare system is the impact that Big Data will have. For instance, Big Data can help empower patients to be in charge of their own health. From providing access to their medical records, to enabling continuous health monitoring, it will help inform and empower patients to be proactive managers of their own health. Similarly, mounds of clinical and epidemiological data can lead to greater insights in diagnosis and therapeutics of various diseases. The requirements of this particular code-a-thon will be centered around developing and designing the prototype of an app that supports the collection and communication of health care data about key diseases and behaviors. Please stay tuned for more information, and sign up for the code-a-thon and for the annual conference at www.healthtechnologyforum.com and follow them on twitter @healthtechforum. You can follow me on twitter @DarshanaN.
Additionally, mark your calendar for 2 other interesting life science events.
May 16, 17 is #TiEcon 2014, the largest entrepreneurship conference, at Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. The Healthcare Track on Day 2 will feature panels on exciting topics like “Harnessing Healthcare Data”, “Engaging Patients of the Future”, “Where the VCs are Investing in Healthcare” and more. Register by May 1, for www.tiecon.org through the link http://tinyurl.com/kr2hkcw as my guest and enter promo code tievalue to get $100 off.
May, 6 EPPIC event – EPPIC frequently spotlights success stories of local entrepreneurs and on My 6 at Cubberley in Palo Alto, will host Dr. Sarvajna Dwivedi, Founder of Pearl Therapeutics which was acquired last year, by Astra Zeneca for $1.15 B. Register at www.eppicglobal.org.
http://www.bio2devicegroup.org is a group that meets every Tuesday, in Sunnyvale and hosts speakers on a wide range of healthcare topics. Pre-registration required for “Second Tuesday of the month meetings” and all other meetings are free and open for walk-ins. For information on any of these events, feel free to send me an email at wd_darshana at hotmail dot com.
“Entrepreneurs must Focus on Market Pain” – Norman Winarsky, SRI
EPPIC organization was found in 1998, with a mission to promote networking, entrepreneurship, and mentoring for life science professionals. Each year, EPPIC Annual Conference provides a wonderful forum to realize this mission. EPPICon on March 29, 2014 was held at Westin, SF and began with opening remarks by Dr. Norman Winarksy, Vice President at SRI Ventures.
SRI or Stanford Research Institute was found in 1946 to help Stanford University professors make an impact in the world. It has a staff of 2500, of whom 1000 have advanced degrees and current revenue is in the range of $600M. Many revolutionary technologies like the mouse (invented by Doug Engelbart whom I had an opportunity to meet, before he passed away, when I took his picture inserted here with the first red mouse that investor Peter Gerber is holding), electronic banking, robotic surgery (which spun out as Intuitive Surgical), and SIRI to name a few, have come out of SRI. All SRI personnel are taught to identify the value proposition and work towards that goal, said Winarksy. SRI is a non-profit organization but gives 34% of royalty to the individual or the team that worked on the specific technology and that is how SRI competes with high salaries in Silicon Valley. SRI process always begins with identifying the market pain, ideally a larger market opportunity. Out of about 2000 opportunities identified, about 3-4 get funded and get about 10X return; many of the others become licensing deals and the rest die. Currently Tempo, a smart calendar is showing a lot of promise, said Winarsky. This was a great start to a day that proceeded with excellent panels, speed pitch sessions and SIG networking opportunities.
Next EPPIC event will be held on May 6 at 6pm at Cubberley Theater, 4000 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto. Dr. Sarvajna Dwivedi, CSO at Pearl Therapeutics will talk about the entrepreneurship journey that took him and his co-founder to build from a tiny spin out, from Nektar Therapeutics, a world class multi-site organization. Pearl Therapeutics was bought by Astra Zeneca last year, for $1.15 B. To register for the event go to http://www.eppicglobal.org .
On “Building a Pearl” – Story of Pearl Therapeutics from Concept to Acquisition by Astra Zeneca for $1.15B
Posted by Darshana V. Nadkarni, Ph.D. in Biotech - Medical Device - Life Science - Healthcare on March 17, 2014
Pearl Therapeutics is a huge success story in the biotech world. At www.bio2devicegroup.org event, Dr. Sarvajna Dwivedi, co-founder of Pearl Therapeutics talked about his own professional journey and about Pearl team, technology and products, that brought the company to pearly stunning $1.15 Billion exit. Pearl Therapeutics was acquired by Astra Zeneca in June, 2013.
Dwivedi began the talk by paying tribute to his mentors, his father, Professor Rewa Prasad Dwivedi, his first role model and a reknowed Sanskrit scholar and poet, his professor Dr. Alan Mitchell at University of British Columbia who imparted important lessons on staying true to fundamentals and understanding the properties of nature, and Silicon Valley’s prolific inventor Mr. Mir Imran, who told him long before he needed to raise money, “don’t ever take investor’s money, unless you can treat it as your own”. Dwivedi said he carried all those valuable lessons in his professional journey.
After his education where he worked on tablets, Dwivedi was invited to join Glaxo to work on inhalation products. When he was concerned about making a jump from tablets to inhalation products, he was told “you know how to keep particles together, you would know how to keep them apart too”. From Glaxo, he went on to Dura, where he worked on an electromechanical inhaler system, a complex 50 part device. Then at Alkermes, Dwivedi put together a team which designed a device with a precessing capsule inside. Each of these opportunities contributed to giving him a stronger grounding into fundamentals.
Eventually, his career journey brought him to Nektar Therapeutics. Nektar was focusing on systemic conditions like diabetes, to be treated by inhalation delivery of drugs like insulin, and on anti-infective therapies for lungs. Dwivedi and his colleagues were looking at delivering drugs uniformly into the lungs for diseases such as asthma and COPD, and especially make drug combinations with standard metered dose inhalers. Global COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma market is projected to reach $47 billion, by 2017. These were compelling clinical problems that Dwivedi and his colleagues were trying to solve, but Nektar chose to stay focused on other opportunities. Eventually, Dwivedi and his co-founder Adrian Smith formed Pearl Therapeutics and spun it out as a separate company.
Pearl Therapeutics has combined two bronchodilator drugs in one inhaler, and put it into Phase III. Pearl has now demonstrated that it can also combine three drugs, to treat the fatal lung condition, COPD. These drugs typically do not mix well together in a common inhaler and that leads to less than ideal distribution of the drugs in the lungs. Pearl’s secret is its proprietary technology. Dwivedi said the lessons he learned earlier in life regarding staying true to fundamentals and to not fight nature, were most useful in navigating these challenges. The nature of particles is to coalesce, and therefore it’s very difficult to keep them separate for aerosolization purposes. This can be achieved easily with liquid propellant suspensions, such as those in commonly used metered dose inhalers. Pearl creates these suspensions with a proprietary technology utilizing specially engineered phospholipid porous particles. When these inhalers are actuated then the porous particles go back from liquid to vapor, facilitating consistent and uniform inhalation delivery. The porous particles traverse the back of the throat easily and spread aerosols throughout the lung. Astra Zeneca saw the tremendous promise in this technology, the product progression achieved by Pearl, the value of the product pipeline at Pearl, and the Pearl team assembled by Dwivedi and his co-founder, Smith. AZ forked over $1 B+ and acquired Pearl, with a promise to enable Pearl to continue to operate independently. This was very interesting talk and generated a great deal of discussion.