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Harvard and Deerfield Establish Lab1636, a Major Translational Research Alliance

Wednesday, March 13th 2019 at 12:00pm UTC

Deerfield commits $100M to inject fuel into translational life science
research at Harvard

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Harvard University and Deerfield Management, a healthcare investment
firm, have established a major strategic R&D alliance to speed the
development and translation of biomedical and life-science innovations
into transformative treatments that can improve life, health, and
medical care. Through a newly launched company called Lab1636, Deerfield
has committed an unprecedented $100 million in initial funding to
support the alliance.

Spearheaded by Harvard
Office of Technology Development
(OTD), the alliance is expected to
catalyze the development of novel therapeutics and rapidly drive
innovations toward clinical validation.

“We envision the Harvard-Deerfield collaboration as a powerful means to
fuel translational research across the University, enabling promising
innovations to advance beyond their laboratory roots,” said Harvard
Provost Alan M. Garber.

“By working with an alliance partner who is prepared to support
early-stage research and to invest in the success of pre-clinical and
clinical-stage commercial development, we’re enhancing the opportunities
for Harvard’s life-changing innovations to reach patients in need,”
added Isaac T. Kohlberg, Senior Associate Provost and Chief Technology
Development Officer at Harvard. “Success in a research alliance requires
a partner with a long vision and operational and development expertise,
as well as the financial resources, and we’re delighted to launch this
initiative with Deerfield.”

A private company wholly owned by affiliates of Deerfield, Lab1636 will
support Harvard R&D projects throughout various stages of drug discovery
and development, for example enabling studies to explicate the biology
of disease, validate therapeutic targets, or achieve a proof-of-concept
necessary for filing an Investigational New Drug (IND) application.

“Harvard is an outstanding partner for an alliance,” said James E.
Flynn, Managing Partner at Deerfield. “The University’s outstanding
science, breadth of technologies, and mix of esteemed junior and senior
faculty constitute a fertile environment for the continuous generation
of novel insights. This, in combination with its experience advancing
potential therapeutics, makes it the perfect place to establish an
impactful translational partnership.”

At any research university, the most commercially promising innovations
eventually outgrow the lab bench, requiring greater resources or more
focused development than an academic setting can provide. In addition to
funding research on campus, Lab1636 may facilitate licenses to outside
companies and is equipped to provide substantial support to the launch
and growth of new startups dedicated to developing Harvard technologies.

“The sheer scope of this collaboration with Deerfield may prove
transformative for Harvard research,” said Vivian Berlin, Managing
Director, Strategic Partnerships in OTD. “This alliance has immense
potential to bridge the development gap, ensure continuity of resources,
and complement our other major translational programs, such as the
Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator.”

Kohlberg added, “We hope that our R&D alliance with Deerfield will
further sustain and speed the commercialization of innovations from
across the University toward societal impact.”

Harvard’s R&D projects to be funded by Lab1636 will be selected by a
joint advisory committee, and the projects will be initiated by
principal investigators from labs across the University. The projects
will generally focus on the development of novel therapeutics, ideally
advancing many to a stage that would enable the filing of an IND
application and, if successful, the commencement of clinical trials in
patients.

About Harvard Office of Technology Development

Harvard’s Office of Technology Development (OTD) promotes the public
good by fostering innovation and translating new inventions made at
Harvard University into useful products that are available and
beneficial to society. Our integrated approach to technology development
comprises sponsored research and corporate alliances, intellectual
property management, and technology commercialization through venture
creation and licensing. More than 70 startups have launched to
commercialize Harvard technologies in the past 5 years, collectively
raising more than a billion dollars in financing. To further bridge the
academic-industry development gap, Harvard OTD manages the Blavatnik
Biomedical Accelerator and the Physical Sciences & Engineering
Accelerator. For more information, please visit https://otd.harvard.edu.

About Deerfield Management

Deerfield is a healthcare investment management firm committed to
advancing healthcare through investment, information and philanthropy.

Contacts

Harvard Office of Technology Development
Caroline Perry,
617-495-4157
caroline_perry@harvard.edu

Deerfield Management Company
Karen Heidelberger, 212-551-1600
karenh@deerfield.com

Source: Harvard OTD


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