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Slingshot & STAT have partnered to provide you with interviews with experts led by STAT's reporters. This call is on:

Biotech readout - Taking stock halfway through the year


Who's the expert?

Name: Adam Feuerstein

Adam Feuerstein is STAT’s national biotech columnist, reporting on the intersection of biotech and Wall Street. A veteran journalist, Adam was most recently Senior Columnist at TheStreet, where he wrote about biotech and drug stocks. Adam lives near Boston with his wife, two kids and Bo, an insanely cute boxer/mutt.

Name: Damian Garde
Damian Garde covers biotech from Boston for STAT. He spent four years covering drug development at FierceBiotech, and previously wrote for and the Albuquerque Journal. Damian spends his free time watching movies and shouting at the New York Knicks through screens of various sizes.

Interview Questions

For mid and large cap growth companies (thinking Celgene, Alexion and the like) what do you think is the proper way to expand pipeline and protect revenue? Mergers, acquisitions, licensing deals or internal R&D projects?

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Another area being discussed recently by Dr. Gottlieb is the idea of re-thinking clinical trials for diseases with no current therapies and low survival rates. The main thing being discussed here is employing single arm trials with no control, moving promising drugs forward via A.A. and doing confirmatory trials post marketing approval. Do you have any drugs/companies that you think would be deserving of this approach right now? And on the other side, do you have any drugs/companies who you think do not deserve this sort of accelerated approval but may receive it anyway given our current regulatory mood from the FDA?

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Scott Gottlieb has recently been highlighting the success of drugs which have received BTD, AA and other FDA expedited review programs. Do you think this is in response to criticism the FDA is becoming too lax or rushing drugs to market? Or could this be seen more as a defense by Dr. Gottlieb of the FDA's current ability to identify and approve promising drugs in light of the recent Right to Try legislation and the mood of some that the FDA is a slow moving roadblock to patients receiving top notch care?

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Do companies like Alexion need to be more aggressive to expand pipeline and defend against competition, or are their currently beat up share prices just a blip on the radar?

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How would you compare the safety of ZFN from Sangamo with CRISPR? Do you consider the skipping of the 1st dose cohort in the MPS1 study due to "observed safety" in the MPS2 study (SGMO Q1 call) as a positive, neutral or maybe even negative sign and why?

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The divergence in performance between the large caps and the SMids is very noticeable this year. It is very hard to attract generalist inflows when large cap 'leaders' are so weak. What do large caps have to do to gain favor back with Wall Street?

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What are your thoughts on the pipeline of drugs for Sarepta?

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Please comment on how you would if you started a biotech company for developing possible cures for cancers and or reducing risk of heart disease with drugs for cholesterol navigate the scrutiny of regulation and assumed over pricing of your theoretical products?

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Any opinion on these upcoming IPOs?
Kezar Life Sciences
Autolus Therapeutics Limited

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