Issue Date: June 13, 2011
Pfizer Expands R&D Network
Pfizer announced the third in its network of research partnerships with medical and academic institutions last week, naming eight partners in and around Boston. The new partnership will join similar hubs in San Francisco and New York City in the company’s Centers for Therapeutic Innovation (CTI), which launched last year.
The Boston group includes Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston University School of Medicine, Children’s Hospital Boston, Harvard University, Partners HealthCare, Tufts Medical Center, Tufts University, and the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester.
In addition, Pfizer announced that it will lease about 16,000 sq ft of laboratory space at the Center for Life Science, in the Longwood Medical Area in Boston, where company researchers will work with their new academic partners. Pfizer says the facility will serve as headquarters for CTI.
Pfizer says it will invest about $100 million in the Boston-CTI partnership over the next five years. The investment will include milestone payments for partners, in addition to direct funding of research.
“We believe the Centers for Therapeutic Innovation are an industry-leading model of collaboration and innovation,” says Anthony Coyle, vice president of CTI. “Boston, with its wealth of scientific and medical expertise, is well suited to serve as headquarters for CTI.”
Pfizer’s partnership network is growing as the company cuts billions of dollars from its traditional research base. Earlier this year, Pfizer announced that it would close its Sandwich, England, research facility and move some activities out of its U.S. research headquarters in Groton, Conn. (C&EN, Feb. 7, page 5).
Jose-Carlos Gutiérrez-Ramos, senior vice president of biotherapeutics R&D at Pfizer, describes the academic partnerships as the new look of R&D at Pfizer. “The Centers for Therapeutic Innovation is a network of partnerships between Pfizer and academic centers that aims to accelerate and transform drug discovery and development,” he says. “Our ultimate goal is to bridge the gap between scientific discovery and the delivery of promising candidates to the pipeline.”
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