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The Year In New York Biotech—Still Trying to Make It Here

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privacy regulations. Celgene didn’t find anything in Cambridge it liked this month, I suppose that counts as a point for New York.


New York’s big pharma companies may not be such a boon to the region’s emergence as a startup mecca. This month New York-based Bristol-Myers Squibb agreed to buy San Diego’s Amylin Pharmaceuticals for $5.3 billion; Merck, in Whitehouse Station, NJ, formed a partnership with Ambryx, also in San Diego, paying the California startup $15 million in upfront payments; and Swiss pharma giant Roche sent shockwaves through New Jersey when it announced it is closing its 80-year-old research site in Nutley, slashing 1,000 jobs in the process.


MedStartr opened its doors in New York this month. It’s a Kickstarter-like crowdfunding enterprise that wants to put together entrepreneurs with backers for healthcare technologies and services. The site launched with six projects, including MedStartr itself, chosen from some 75 entrepreneurs who sent in applications. So the health IT trend continues to build. Meanwhile, Celgene did not find anyone in Massachusetts to do a deal with again this month. Another trend?


Once again, a New York pharma company goes out of state. Pfizer, the world’s largest drugmaker, agreed to collaborate with Nodality,  based in South San Francisco, CA, to come up with better drugs for autoimmune diseases.


Making up for some of the pain inflicted when it closed down Nutley, Roche announced in September that it will place its new Translational Clinical Research Center at the Alexandria Center for Life Science in Manhattan. The center will conduct early stage drug … Next Page »

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One response to “The Year In New York Biotech—Still Trying to Make It Here”

  1. realposter says:

    Good coverage.

    I have 2 theories – which may or may not be correct. 1) The big pharma companies exist in the NYC metro area are in some cases 100 year old institutions – so they suck up most of the talent that is in the area. 2) the top notch research institutes are more interested in earning licensing revenues than foster entrepreneurship…(I don’t mean that in a negative way).

    Boston and San Francisco are expensive too… so that can’t be the main reason.