By Seth Yakatan
According to StartUP Health Insights, “Personalized Medicine Takes Off: With the advent of the $1,000 genome and new government initiatives positioned to support the greater precision medicine mission, a surge in genomic analytics companies has emerged focused on data basing, analyzing and discovering actionable insights pertaining to congenital disease treatment.” This is certainly true with the advent of Silicon Valley startup, Quartz, Quartz wants to make breast cancer-gene testing affordable to all Americans – remember Men get breast cancer as well. Under their “Color Genomics” branded testing kit, because there is no middle-man and because the company requires a physician’s involvement unlike other genetic testing companies that have had to stop their activities, Quartz has launched an Every Woman Program to provide free testing to women who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford it. http://bit.ly/1G41gnF
Another startup that is making waves in the industry, is a health-care insurance outfit called Oscar Health. Its two year’s old. with a whopping valuation of $1.5 billion valuation and you should note that UnitedHealth Group’s $114 billion market cap or even Aetna’s $37.75 billion value show that Oscar has “lots of room to grow.” Read here for more. http://wrd.cm/1Qb6GWd
Our great physicians often go unlauded when talking about companies and investments, but as a Dad, I couldn’t not comment on this great story about little Annalise out in Raliegh, NC. She was born with her esophagus only partially formed and was missing about 1.5 inches of the foodpipe. While surviving via a gastric tube, Doctor J. David Hoover, a pediatric surgeon, fused Annalise’ two disconnected foodpipe sections without surgery using magnetic nubbins to pull both ends together to create a single organ. http://bit.ly/1Ep3U9
Keytruda, a new drug, has been tested on 495 lung cancer patients where it targets mutations in genes which mask tumors from detection and destruction by immune system cells normally preventing cancer from spreading. Keytruda launches the immune system to fight tumors to not only defeat melanoma but also lung cancer. We will keep our fingers crossed for this drug. http://nbcnews.to/1InyymG
Another promising cancer therapy is the new drug combination from Bristol Myers that have shrank tumors by 59%. http://on.wsj.com/1bUqvSd
In the ever exciting and evolving world of medical cannabis, the only FDA regulated drug is currently being provided by GW Pharamceuticals. But folks, there is going to be a new player in town very soon. Watch this space and we will keep you apprised. Spoiler alert – I am personally involved in the company and very excited. www.kalyterainc.com
Editor's Note: Seth Yakatan is currently serving as Vice-President of Business Development for Invion, Ltd. (ASX:IVX). Seth has been professionally involved in the biotechnology industry for over 15 years through his work with Katan Associates.
Invion is a clinical-stage drug development company focused on the development of treatments for major market opportunities in inflammatory diseases including asthma, chronic bronchitis and lupus.
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