Taipei Medical University
  • 2018 Nov 29
  • TMU GLORIA Hosts Seminar on New Drug Development, TrendsTechnology Transfer of Immunotherapy
A seminar focusing new drug development and the trends and technology transfer of immunotherapy took place at NTUH International Convention Center on November 27. The event was jointly organized by Taipei Medical University, the Biomedical Development Board of Taiwan, the Drug Commercialization Center, and Clarivate Analytics. Guests, including Clarivate scientific advisor Dr. David Dunn, Celtec Inc. founder Dr. Tong-young Lee, and Biomedical Development Board of Taiwan Chief Administrative Officer Dr. Chih-hwa Lin were invited to discuss the latest global developments in new drugs worldwide and share their views on what immunotherapy niche Taiwan is suited to fill.

The seminar focus on the global development and trend of immunotherapy started with an opening speech by head of TMU Office of Business Development Dr. Chun-mao Lin. With immunotherapy heralded as one of the most important scientific breakthroughs in 2016 and the passing in 2018 of Taiwan’s “Regulations Governing Implementation or Use of Specific Medical Technology, Examination, Laboratory Testing and Medical Devices”, new possibilities for cell therapy technologies have opened up. According to Dr. Lin, research is the foundation of product development and commercialization is the aim of all research results. Dr. Lin expects academic research to better align with industry needs and looks forward to fruitful results from industry-academia exchanges.

Dr. Li-ju Wang, head of Drug Commercialization Center, indicated that the Drug Commercialization Center has been founded to foster innovative solutions for the bio-medical industry. The center’s scope of services include promoting a well-rounded industry ecosystem, consolidating resources in innovation clusters, accelerating international linking between domestic and international players, and promoting industries that are unique in their own right.

Clarivate Analytics Taiwan general manager Yong-ying Fang said that the company never stops changing and seeking M&A in the face of an ever-changing global market. Mr. Fang expressed his aspiration to help piece together the puzzle of new drug development.

A former international pharmaceutical R&D team leader and veteran of both pharmaceutical and biotech industries, Dr. David Dunn shared his experience with cancer treatment and immunotherapy clinical testing and his analytical views on the difference between the Asia-Pacific market and the rest of the world. According to Dunn, recent years have seen increased advances in immunotherapy applications and tumor treatment innovations in the Asia-Pacific region.

Dr. Tong-young Lee, founder of Celtec Inc., shared insights on global trends in immunotherapy, indicating that in the coming decade immunotherapy will be one of the prioritized development fields, though amid challenges. He suggested researchers explore immunotherapy from an allogeneic respective, which involves higher difficultly levels. According to Lee, with Taiwan becoming the world’s second country to allow cell therapy practice, potential of immune cell therapy will be expected for certain.

Dr. Chih-hwa Lin, Chief Administrative Officer of Biomedical Development Board of Taiwan, remarked that the vision and strategy of Taiwan’s effort in promoting biomedical innovations is to create an ecosystem, innovate and fulfill unmet demands on the foundation of innovative clusters and core infrastructure, and ultimately commercialize products by accelerating industrialization through intellectual property rights, merging capital markets, keeping tax regulations up to date, and improving National Health Insurance price controls.

The event ended with a session chaired by Taiwan Bio Industry Organization secretary general Apo Huang, who discussed what Taiwan should do to enter the global market, what immunotherapy R&D challenges Taiwan may encounter, and what legal challenges the country may face in the pursuit of a key position in the pharmaceutical industry chain.
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