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The Business of Immunotherapy

March 18, 2014 | Matthew Tontonoz

Axel Hoos, M.D., Ph.D., knows that good science is good business. As vice president of oncology and head of immuno-oncology at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), he directs clinical and translational research on molecular mechanisms of cancer and tumor-host interactions. His main goal is to develop rational combinations of immunotherapies to optimize patient outcomes.

In this, he has some relevant experience. Prior to joining GSK, Dr. Hoos was the medical lead in immuno-oncology at Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS), where he developed Yervoy® (ipilimumab, anti-CTLA-4), the first drug ever to improve the survival rate of patients with advanced melanoma in a phase III clinical trial. Yervoy® is currently approved for use in advanced melanoma by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the European Medicines Agency (EMA), and the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). It is no exaggeration to say that Yervoy® has transformed how biopharma companies view immunotherapy as a commercial opportunity.

Dr. Hoos was recently interviewed by partnering360, an online network of leaders in the life science industry, about "The State of Play in Immunotherapeutics." The interview was a prelude to the BIO-Europe Spring conference held in Turin, Italy, from March 10-12, 2014, where Hoos served on a panel discussing the differences between immunotherapy drugs in terms of scientific risk, clinical development strategies, and commercial challenges.

You can read the entire interview here.

In addition to his work at GSK, Dr. Hoos also serves as co-director of the Cancer Immunotherapy Consortium (CIC) of the Cancer Research Institute, where he is now also a member of the Scientific Advisory Council.

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