Bayer will invest over $30 million, spanning five years, to research and develop new treatments for chronic lung disease as well as a joint lab to broaden Bayer’s presence in the Boston biotech ecosystem. Bayer will join with Partners HealthCare’s founding members Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) to launch the new lab hosting scientists from all three parties.
Chronic Lung Disease
About 65 million people suffer from chronic lung diseases including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). 3 million die annually, making it the third leading cause of death worldwide.
The new collaborative framework includes four leading experts that will combine their expertise in the search for new treatment options for patients who suffer from chronic diseases:
- Edwin Silverman, MD, PhD, Chief of Channing Division of Network Medicine, BWH
- Bruce Levy, MD, Chief of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, BWH
- Benjamin Medoff, MD Chief of Pulmonary and Critical Care, MGH
- Markus Koch, PhD, Head of Preclinical Research, Lung Diseases, Bayer
What is the Collaborative’s Value Proposition
By complementing “in-house” research, Bayer hopes to get “closer to providing life-changing treatment options for patients living with chronic lung diseases,” reports Dr. Joerg Moeller, Member of the Executive Committee of Bayer AG’s Pharmaceuticals Division and Head of Research and Development.
Bringing together the industry sponsor, academia and provider enables “novel approaches to drug discovery” and ultimately will help “accelerate the pace of discovery toward the goal of getting new therapies from the lab to the patients safely and efficiently,” reports Paul Anderson, MD, PhD, SVP and Chief Academic Officer, Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Anderson believes that the collaboration will incorporate novel findings “directly into the drug development pipeline.”
Lab Right at Brigham and Women’s Hospital: Shared Rights to IP
The lab is located at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and will see more than 20 people from all three organizations work in combined teams. The rights to the research findings will be shared equally between the organizations.
Bayer Expands into Boston Ecosystem
Boston is one of the largest biotech clusters in the world—rivaling the San Francisco Bay Area. The new Bayer-funded lab at Brigham and Women’s Hospital is located in the Longwood Medical and Academic Area and bolsters Bayer’s existing presence in Boston. Earlier in the year, Bayer committed to opening lab and office space in the heart of Kendall Square, further expanding its research and development efforts. In 2018, Bayer established a first joint lab in Boston with the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in the area of cardiovascular diseases. Bayer’s Pharmaceuticals Business Development & Licensing team facilitated that 2018 collaboration.