Q&A with Margaret Molloy, Global CMO, Siegel+Gale

MEDIA 7 | May 20, 2019

Margaret Molloy, Global CMO of Siegel+Gale has a 20-year track record as a business-to-business growth instigator, achieved by uniting brand building with demand generation. In Siegel+Gale’s Simplifiers series, Margaret Molloy interviews business leaders who put simplicity to work.

Considered a "CMO whisperer," Margaret is a highly influential CMO and convener of panels and roundtables. She has been recognized by Forbes as one of the top 10 CMOs on Twitter. Margaret also serves as the New York Chair of the Marketing Society

MEDIA 7: If we were to say to a bunch of people who know you, ‘Give us three adjectives that best describe you’, what would we hear?
MARGARET MOLLOY: 
Passionate, energetic and influential.

M7: What is your favourite part of working at Siegel+Gale?
MM:
Both our ethos—helping brands realize the power of simplicity, and the strategists, designers, researchers, and writers who deliver on that ethos to our clients. Our teams are truly simplifiers. I believe that in our harried, cluttered world, brands that focus on simplicity, win.


"It's incumbent on brands to be relevant in order to be part of a conversation that drives their business forward. And to be relevant, you must be in tune with your customers’ needs."

M7: What is the ‘power of simplicity’ that you’re helping CMOs and brand leaders realize?
MM: Simplicity is the ultimate driver of brand loyalty. It inspires people to spend more with a brand, motivates employees to deliver on a brand’s promise and ultimately, drives financial gain for those companies that embrace it.

M7: At Siegel+Gale, how do you align sales and marketing to achieve your branding goals?
MM:
There has always been a natural tension. A CMO’s job is to reconcile that tension by setting a vision for the brand and determining the resource allocation between short-term revenue targets and long-term brand value. At Siegel+Gale, we do not engage in random acts of marketing—all marketing is in the service of the brand and the revenue targets.


"A CMO’s job is to reconcile tension between brand-building programs and performance marketing by setting a vision for the brand and determining the resource allocation between short-term revenue targets and long-term brand value."

M7: Margaret, you were listed on Forbes Top 10 Most Influential Chief Marketing Officers on Social Media in 2017 and have won IrishCentral’s 2018 Creativity and Arts Award in Fashion and Design. How is social media transforming the marketing landscape and how do you see it evolving in future?
MM:
In previous eras, a brand’s responsibility was to broadcast its message and product offerings to the community. Today, with the advent of social media, it has become a multi-party dialogue. The fundamental shift is from controlling the brand message to engaging constituencies (i.e., customers, shareholders, the community at large). Therefore, it's incumbent on brands to be relevant in order to be part of a conversation that drives their business forward. And to be relevant, you must be in tune with your customers’ needs.  Social media is a great mechanism not only for engagement but also for listening.


"Simplicity is the ultimate driver of brand loyalty. It inspires people to spend more with a brand, motivates employees to deliver on a brand’s promise and ultimately, drives financial gain for those companies that embrace it."

M7: For your platform #WearingIrish, which channels helped you the most in reaching out to the target audience?
MM: I created WearingIrish to expose Ireland’s talented fashion designers to new markets and to showcase Irish fashion design on the global stage. Instagram is an obvious choice to reach shoppers and influencers; it’s a robust platform for any fashion brand because it's inherently visual.

In addition to Instagram, I leveraged my professional network on LinkedIn to build a broad-based board of advisors and potential collaborators for WearingIrish.

M7: What motivates you to get out of the bed in the morning?
MM:
I’m a connector, and I get my energy from convening the marketing community via live events and other programs. On a daily basis, I host conversations with ambitious CMOs and brand leaders about their challenges. I relish the opportunity to connect marketing leaders with the team at Siegel+Gale because of our depth of expertise in helping our clients build brands.

ABOUT SIEGEL+GALE

Siegel+Gale is the simplicity company. We seek it, defend it and embrace it in everything we do to help brands reach their true potential. Simplicity is the centerpiece of the strategies we develop that reveal the unique truths of an organization, the engaging stories we create that connect brands with their audiences and the meaningful experiences we deliver that are both unexpectedly fresh and remarkably clear.

Since 1969, Siegel+Gale has championed simplicity for leading corporations, nonprofits and government organizations worldwide. We have offices in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, Dubai, and Shanghai, but we’re willing to fly just about anywhere. We’re also not alone. As part of Brand Consulting Group, a division of Omnicom Group Inc., we have strong partners all around the world.

More C-Suite on deck

Q&A with Sangram Vajre, Co-founder & Chief Evangelist at Terminus

MEDIA 7 | January 9, 2020

Sangram Vajre, Co-Founder & Chief Evangelist at Terminus is also an author and host of the podcast FlipmyFunnel. He is one of the leading minds in B2B marketing. MEDIA 7: What are you passionate about? SANGRAM VAJRE: Three things: Lead professionally. Grow personally. Love family. M7: Terminus has been recognized as one of Georgia’s 40 fastest-growing companies by ACG Atlanta. What factors contribute to this pace? SV: One of our core values is #OneTeam – which means we think and act as one team and know that if we treat our team right, they will treat our customers amazing. There are no great companies, only great people that make those companies.

Read More

Q&A with Andrea Lechner-Becker, Chief Marketing Officer at LeadMD

MEDIA 7 | December 5, 2019

Andrea Lechner-Becker, Chief Marketing Officer at LeadMD is an experienced Marketing and Sales Executive with a demonstrated history of working in the marketing and advertising industry. Skilled in Business Process, Marketo, Sales, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), and IT Service Management, Andrea is also a strong business development professional and a storyteller. MEDIA 7: What inspired you to get into marketing? ANDREA LECHNER: Frankly, not having better options. I originally attended the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse thinking I’d major in Archaeology. I wanted to be Indiana Jones! But, after visiting the archaeology building – i.e. the cold, dark basement of the science building – where a girl sat to piece together pieces of an old Native American vase, I knew archaeology was not going to be the right path for me. And so, without being good at science and a major in art or art history was unlikely to pay my bills, I decided to go into “business”. I originally registered as a management major, but took my first marketing class and thought it was more interesting and switched my sophomore year. That was pretty much it. I’d never been involved in business classes or DECA in high school – I didn’t really know what to do or what jobs in marketing were even possible. I dumb lucked myself into it really. M7: As a storyteller, do you relate the brand to a story or story to the brand? AL: Both? Neither? I think there are stories in every brand, because there are people working on the brand and people engaging with the brand and people using what the brand creates. People, most often a single person, are at the heart of great stories. You can start with the “point” of the story you’re trying to tell. Say you have a software that help accountants better create reports for board meetings. It’s likely you’ll want to tell a success story about an accountant getting promoted to CFO in part because your software helped better communicate their work product to the board. You could have the idea for that and go looking for that story in your customers. OR, you could hear that story, and say, “That’s amazing!” and share it with customers, partners and internal people. Stories are all around us – the most important thing is to keep your ears and eyes open for finding them.

Read More

Q&A with Ed Breault, Chief Marketing Officer at Aprimo

MEDIA 7 | November 28, 2019

Ed Breault, Chief Marketing Officer at Aprimo is a marketer with over 18 years of industry experience. At Aprimo, Ed is responsible for the global brand and growth which includes all Paid/Owned/Earned media, Brand Experience, Product Marketing, Industry Marketing, Influencer Marketing, Strategic Communications, Content Marketing, Analyst Relations, Alliance Marketing, Public Relations, Events, Demand Generation and Account-Based Marketing. MEDIA 7: What’s your superpower? ED BREAULT: I would say it’s applying the full spectrum of art and science that is required in marketing today. Not just left or right brained, but whole-brained strategy. Being human yet data-driven and really understanding numbers and (the right) metrics to make connections to business drivers. Add storytelling to that, so I can effectively communicate to my team, the CEO and CFO as well as my Board of Directors on those metrics, and connecting all that we are doing in marketing to the mission of the business. Then quickly shifting gears to the art and creative aspects of marketing that are required to engage an audience and tell great commercial stories that take complex concepts and craft them in a way that is interesting for people to pay attention to. I have to be the ultimate point of truth for the brand. M7: At Aprimo, how have marketing leadership roles and responsibilities evolved over the past few years? EB: There are so many dimensions needed by marketing leaders today. There are several elements driving this evolution, it’s the new experience battlefront that is emerging and also marketers themselves driving changes. From a market perspective, there is a clear appetite for disruption and consumers are wanting more experiential elements to their buying experience and interactions with brands. Take a few direct to consumer disruptions like trialing products in-home, purchasing directly from a brand or even wanting to ensure that the producer’s trade practices are in line with the buyer’s or even a regulator’s for that matter. Then we want to try before we buy, and we emotionally care about the supply chain of products. Do we TRUST this brand to do business with them? Behind all of this is a story that needs to be told, and it is those marketers who know their audience well and make connections that will win the commercial game. Back to the marketer, there are so many diverse backgrounds that marketers bring now and I’m really intrigued by those who have unconventional backgrounds because they contribute something uniquely new to the field. I love hearing about the marketer’s journey.

Read More

Q&A with Sangram Vajre, Co-founder & Chief Evangelist at Terminus

MEDIA 7 | January 9, 2020

Sangram Vajre, Co-Founder & Chief Evangelist at Terminus is also an author and host of the podcast FlipmyFunnel. He is one of the leading minds in B2B marketing. MEDIA 7: What are you passionate about? SANGRAM VAJRE: Three things: Lead professionally. Grow personally. Love family. M7: Terminus has been recognized as one of Georgia’s 40 fastest-growing companies by ACG Atlanta. What factors contribute to this pace? SV: One of our core values is #OneTeam – which means we think and act as one team and know that if we treat our team right, they will treat our customers amazing. There are no great companies, only great people that make those companies.

Read More

Q&A with Andrea Lechner-Becker, Chief Marketing Officer at LeadMD

MEDIA 7 | December 5, 2019

Andrea Lechner-Becker, Chief Marketing Officer at LeadMD is an experienced Marketing and Sales Executive with a demonstrated history of working in the marketing and advertising industry. Skilled in Business Process, Marketo, Sales, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), and IT Service Management, Andrea is also a strong business development professional and a storyteller. MEDIA 7: What inspired you to get into marketing? ANDREA LECHNER: Frankly, not having better options. I originally attended the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse thinking I’d major in Archaeology. I wanted to be Indiana Jones! But, after visiting the archaeology building – i.e. the cold, dark basement of the science building – where a girl sat to piece together pieces of an old Native American vase, I knew archaeology was not going to be the right path for me. And so, without being good at science and a major in art or art history was unlikely to pay my bills, I decided to go into “business”. I originally registered as a management major, but took my first marketing class and thought it was more interesting and switched my sophomore year. That was pretty much it. I’d never been involved in business classes or DECA in high school – I didn’t really know what to do or what jobs in marketing were even possible. I dumb lucked myself into it really. M7: As a storyteller, do you relate the brand to a story or story to the brand? AL: Both? Neither? I think there are stories in every brand, because there are people working on the brand and people engaging with the brand and people using what the brand creates. People, most often a single person, are at the heart of great stories. You can start with the “point” of the story you’re trying to tell. Say you have a software that help accountants better create reports for board meetings. It’s likely you’ll want to tell a success story about an accountant getting promoted to CFO in part because your software helped better communicate their work product to the board. You could have the idea for that and go looking for that story in your customers. OR, you could hear that story, and say, “That’s amazing!” and share it with customers, partners and internal people. Stories are all around us – the most important thing is to keep your ears and eyes open for finding them.

Read More

Q&A with Ed Breault, Chief Marketing Officer at Aprimo

MEDIA 7 | November 28, 2019

Ed Breault, Chief Marketing Officer at Aprimo is a marketer with over 18 years of industry experience. At Aprimo, Ed is responsible for the global brand and growth which includes all Paid/Owned/Earned media, Brand Experience, Product Marketing, Industry Marketing, Influencer Marketing, Strategic Communications, Content Marketing, Analyst Relations, Alliance Marketing, Public Relations, Events, Demand Generation and Account-Based Marketing. MEDIA 7: What’s your superpower? ED BREAULT: I would say it’s applying the full spectrum of art and science that is required in marketing today. Not just left or right brained, but whole-brained strategy. Being human yet data-driven and really understanding numbers and (the right) metrics to make connections to business drivers. Add storytelling to that, so I can effectively communicate to my team, the CEO and CFO as well as my Board of Directors on those metrics, and connecting all that we are doing in marketing to the mission of the business. Then quickly shifting gears to the art and creative aspects of marketing that are required to engage an audience and tell great commercial stories that take complex concepts and craft them in a way that is interesting for people to pay attention to. I have to be the ultimate point of truth for the brand. M7: At Aprimo, how have marketing leadership roles and responsibilities evolved over the past few years? EB: There are so many dimensions needed by marketing leaders today. There are several elements driving this evolution, it’s the new experience battlefront that is emerging and also marketers themselves driving changes. From a market perspective, there is a clear appetite for disruption and consumers are wanting more experiential elements to their buying experience and interactions with brands. Take a few direct to consumer disruptions like trialing products in-home, purchasing directly from a brand or even wanting to ensure that the producer’s trade practices are in line with the buyer’s or even a regulator’s for that matter. Then we want to try before we buy, and we emotionally care about the supply chain of products. Do we TRUST this brand to do business with them? Behind all of this is a story that needs to be told, and it is those marketers who know their audience well and make connections that will win the commercial game. Back to the marketer, there are so many diverse backgrounds that marketers bring now and I’m really intrigued by those who have unconventional backgrounds because they contribute something uniquely new to the field. I love hearing about the marketer’s journey.

Read More

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CSL Plasma Reimagines Donor Experience With First Donations Completed on Innovative Plasma Collection Technology

CSL Plasma | August 08, 2022

CSL Plasma, the plasma collection business of global biotherapeutics leader CSL Behring, began a new era in plasma donations, collecting its first plasma donations using leading-edge plasma collection technology that is expected to significantly reduce average collection time – by approximately one-third – and improve the donor experience. The Rika Plasma Donation System, only available at CSL Plasma and developed by Terumo Blood and Cell Technologies, is designed to reduce collection time, and improve the donor and operator experience. When considering prior average CSL Plasma donation procedure times, this could represent about a 30% reduction in average donation time for donors. The new plasmapheresis system first launched today in the Aurora, Colorado, CSL Plasma location, as part of a phased rollout to CSL Plasma U.S. collection centers. Plasma collected at CSL Plasma facilities is used in the manufacturing of lifesaving plasma-derived therapies. "Today marks a threshold moment for plasma donors following years of dedication, innovation and collaboration – demonstrating how we are driven by our promise in delivering lifesaving and life-extending therapies to patients around the world. We look forward to the positive impact this new technology brings and are thankful for plasma donors who continue to do the amazing every day when they donate at CSL Plasma." CSL Chief Operating Officer Paul McKenzie CSL Plasma believes features of the new Rika system can enable the collection of more plasma, in shorter periods of time, supporting quality and safety, and, ultimately, better serving patients who rely on plasma-based therapies. One of the first plasma donors to experience the Rika system, Kelly Geiser is a resident of the Denver area. She has donated plasma since 2017, and is a Platinum level donor as part of CSL Plasma's donor loyalty program, iGive Rewards®. Geiser appreciated that she was able to complete the donation procedure with the new technology in under 35 minutes and in the fastest donation time she has experienced, while every plasma donor's experience will vary. Donating plasma is also personal for Geiser, who says that therapies made from plasma have helped her and her family, including a parent who recently underwent emergency surgery. "It feels good knowing I'm helping people and, who knows, I might've helped somebody I know," said Geiser. According to Terumo BCT, benefits of the Rika Plasma Donation System include Rika completes one plasma collection in 35 minutes or less on average. The proprietary design of the system's centrifuge maximizes the plasma yield per cycle. The Rika Plasma Donation System was designed to allow no more than 200 milliliters of blood cells outside the donor's body, resulting in a low extracorporeal volume, which may contribute to a more comfortable donor experience. With less than 200 milliliters of blood cells outside the donor's body at any given time, should the initial procedure not be completed, the donor can return and donate without being deferred. The device is designed with an advanced user interface to guide CSL Plasma front-line employees. Operators can quickly and confidently resolve alarms, thanks to guidance provided on the Rika system's touchscreen, which also alerts operators about situations that require attention and provides suggested actions to resolve the situation. The system allows for real-time data analytics to drive device maintenance and repairs. CSL Plasma is implementing the new devices at Colorado centers and then expanding to other U.S. locations, providing donors more opportunities to "do the amazing" and be rewarded for their generosity. "As a long-time leader in our industry, CSL Plasma looks forward to this new plasmapheresis technology to delight our plasma donors and attract new donors while supporting a better operating experience for our employees," said Walter Charles, CSL Plasma Senior Vice President and General Manager. "As we complete the implementation of new technology at U.S. centers, we continue to address the critical and ongoing need for human plasma to produce life-saving medicines for people with serious and rare diseases." About CSL Plasma CSL Plasma operates one of the world's largest and most sophisticated plasma collection networks, with more than 300 plasma collection centers in the U.S., Europe and China. Headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, CSL Plasma is a subsidiary of CSL Behring, a global biotherapeutics company and a member of the CSL Group of companies. Plasma collected at CSL Plasma facilities is used by CSL Behring for the sole purpose of manufacturing lifesaving plasma-derived therapies for people in more than 100 countries. The parent company, CSL Limited headquartered in Melbourne, Australia, employs more than 25,000 people. About CSL Behring CSL Behring is a global biotherapeutics leader driven by our promise to save lives. Focused on serving patients' needs by using the latest technologies, we discover, develop and deliver innovative therapies for people living with conditions in the immunology, hematology, cardiovascular and metabolic, respiratory, and transplant therapeutic areas. We use three strategic scientific platforms of plasma fractionation, recombinant protein technology, and cell and gene therapy to support continued innovation and continually refine ways in which products can address unmet medical needs and help patients lead full lives.

Read More

INDUSTRIAL IMPACT

GluBio Completes Series A+ Financing of $22 Million to Advance the Development of Novel TPD Drugs

GluBio Therapeutics Inc | August 02, 2022

GluBio Therapeutics, a biotech company focused on developing novel targeted protein degradation (TPD) drugs, recently announced the completion of Series A+ financing of $22 million. This round is led by Qiming Venture Partners and joined by Lilly Asia Ventures and Kaitai Capital, bringing the total capital raised to nearly $90 million since its establishment in March, 2021. The investment will help advance two molecular glue degraders with best-in-class potential into the clinic for hematological malignancies, accelerate the lead optimization entry of three first-in-class TPD drugs for solid tumors and inflammatory diseases, and further upgrade GluBio's proprietary TPD discovery platform and screening capabilities tailored for rapid discovery and optimization of small molecule protein degraders for 'undruggable' therapeutic targets. "We are thrilled to advance molecular-glue and heterobifunctional protein degraders, which hold a great promise of eliminating disease-causing proteins that are not amenable to traditional therapeutic approaches. In the past 16 months, GluBio made tremendous progress in developing best-in-class and/or first-in-class TPD assets and state-of-the-art TPD platform, fully maximizing the therapeutic and commercial potential of TPD technologies. We completed this round within two months of Series A financing. We are grateful for the unwavering confidence investors have in our assets and platform, and confident that this round will accelerate a smooth and successful execution of our pipeline and platform." Gang Lu, Ph.D., GluBio Founder and CEO Dr. Kan Chen, Partner of Qiming Venture Parners, said, "Targeted protein degradation is a revolutionary technology in the biopharmaceutical field. GluBio team has extensive experience in targeted protein degradation and has built a strong platform for molecular glue and new target discovery technologies, making it a promising leader in TPD field. Qiming Venture Partners is pleased to continue our support to the company's development and hopes that GluBio will accelerate its R&D and industrialization process to bring more unmet need targets to the clinical stage and new treatment options to patients worldwide." About GluBio Therapeutics, Inc GluBio Therapeutics is a pioneering TPD company dedicated to developing targeted protein degraders for human diseases with unmet medical needs. Founded by seasoned drug developers with deep knowledge and expertise in TPD drug discovery, the company has established a proprietary TPD discovery platform and robust screening capability. GluBio is advancing a diverse pipeline of highly selective small-molecule degraders across multiple therapeutic areas including oncology and immunology. The company has research operations in both San Diego, CA, USA and Shanghai, China. About Qiming Venture Partners Founded in 2006, Qiming Venture Partners is a leading China venture capital firm with offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Suzhou, Hong Kong, Seattle, Boston and the San Francisco Bay Area. Currently, Qiming Venture Partners manages eleven US Dollar funds and seven RMB funds with $9.4 billion in capital raised. Since our establishment, we have invested in outstanding companies in the Technology and Consumer (T&C) and Healthcare industries at the early and growth stages. About Lilly Asia Ventures Founded in 2008, Lilly Asia Ventures is a leading biomedical venture capital firm with offices in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Palo Alto. Our vision is to become the trusted partner for exceptional entrepreneurs seeking smart capital and to build great companies developing breakthrough products that treat diseases and improve human health. About Kaitai Capital Founded in 2009, Kaitai Capital is an investment management organization that mainly engages in venture capital, private equity, and wealth management businesses. Fields of investment include biotechnology, healthcare services, digital technology, agriculture technology and etc. Currently, the asset under management of Kaitai Capital has reached 50 billion RMB.

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MEDTECH

Synthego Launches Engineered Cell Libraries to Validate Targets with Speed and Accelerate Drug Discovery

SYNTHEGO | August 03, 2022

Synthego, the genome engineering company, announced the launch of Engineered Cell Libraries, a novel offering that further enables access to CRISPR by providing arrayed CRISPR-edited cells for direct use in functional screening assays. The innovative solution leverages Synthego’s Eclipse™ Platform. This high-throughput cell engineering platform delivers cell-based models for disease research by providing highly predictable CRISPR-engineered cells at scale through the integration of engineering, bioinformatics, and proprietary science. Synthego’s Engineered Cell Libraries provide unparalleled speed, scalability, and efficiency to accelerate the drug discovery process by enabling a faster path between experimental design and execution. As the newest addition to Synthego's Engineered Cells product line, the offering is a custom arrayed library of multi-guide™ knockout cell pools (immortalized or iPSC) delivered ready-made to researchers, efficiently enabling them to bypass the need for equipment and reagent sourcing, transfection, generation of an extensive CRISPR library, and hiring and training of staff. This allows researchers to overcome common hurdles associated with CRISPR-based target discovery and focus specifically on the science. “Arrayed screening approaches are more sensitive, compatible with a broader assortment of downstream assays, and can yield data that is more readily interpretable than the more commonly used pooled approach but are underutilized due to lack of infrastructure and limited bandwidth. With Engineered Cell Libraries, Synthego continues to provide transformative solutions for accelerated drug discovery which ultimately can bring a wider range of therapeutics to market faster.” Travis Maures, Synthego’s Chief Technology Officer With Engineered Cell Libraries, scientists specify the human or mouse cell type (Immortalized or iPSC available at launch) and gene targets they desire to knockout to generate a custom “Knockout Cell Library.” The cells are then edited on Synthego’s Eclipse Platform, which handles guide design, cell line optimization, editing through transfection, and assessment of editing efficiencies, so cells are ready to screen upon arrival. Engineered Cell Libraries on the Eclipse Platform additionally benefit customers with Scalability and flexibility - Engineered Cell Libraries allow researchers to maximize their screening power and identify more targets earlier in the screening process. Predictability and transparency - Synthego’s multi-guide™ technology achieves reliably high knockout efficiencies so researchers can confidently proceed with their screens. Cell engineering expertise and support - Synthego uses its expertise to bring automation innovation that provides greater consistency in outcomes and scalability. Synthego’s Eclipse Platform and Engineered Cell Libraries enable a wide range of applications in research and development across various disease areas and research disciplines such as oncology and neurology. Engineered Cell Libraries were employed in a recent study that used genetic screening to identify host factors that either facilitate or inhibit infection by SARS-CoV-2 and that could potentially be targeted with existing drugs that have been approved for other indications. “We were able to quickly combine our proteomic expertise with Synthego's genome engineering capabilities in a matter of weeks,” said Nevan J. Krogan, Director, Quantitative Biosciences Institute, University of California, San Francisco. “Normally, work such as this would take many years. We were able to quickly pinpoint which human genes are important for infection, and that allowed us to jump to which ones if we were able to drug them, could have a positive pharmacological effect on SARS-CoV-2 infection. That whole pipeline allowed us to identify several potential drug candidates, several of which we're still looking at.” Ultimately, Synthego’s goal is to enable scientists to spend less time thinking about method development and more time running their functional assays. The addition of Engineered Cell Libraries is driving impact in biopharma research and development. ABOUT SYNTHEGO Synthego was founded to revolutionize genome engineering technology, helping translate genomics into the clinic and ultimately making engineered biological therapies accessible to all patients. The company leverages machine learning, automation, and gene editing to build platforms for science at scale. With its foundations in engineering disciplines, the company’s platforms vertically integrate proprietary hardware, software, bioinformatics, chemistries, and molecular biology to advance both basic research and therapeutic development programs. With its technologies cited in more than a thousand peer-reviewed publications and utilized by thousands of commercial and academic researchers and therapeutic drug developers, Synthego is at the forefront of innovation enabling the next generation of medicines by delivering genome editing at an unprecedented scale.

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CELL AND GENE THERAPY

CSL Plasma Reimagines Donor Experience With First Donations Completed on Innovative Plasma Collection Technology

CSL Plasma | August 08, 2022

CSL Plasma, the plasma collection business of global biotherapeutics leader CSL Behring, began a new era in plasma donations, collecting its first plasma donations using leading-edge plasma collection technology that is expected to significantly reduce average collection time – by approximately one-third – and improve the donor experience. The Rika Plasma Donation System, only available at CSL Plasma and developed by Terumo Blood and Cell Technologies, is designed to reduce collection time, and improve the donor and operator experience. When considering prior average CSL Plasma donation procedure times, this could represent about a 30% reduction in average donation time for donors. The new plasmapheresis system first launched today in the Aurora, Colorado, CSL Plasma location, as part of a phased rollout to CSL Plasma U.S. collection centers. Plasma collected at CSL Plasma facilities is used in the manufacturing of lifesaving plasma-derived therapies. "Today marks a threshold moment for plasma donors following years of dedication, innovation and collaboration – demonstrating how we are driven by our promise in delivering lifesaving and life-extending therapies to patients around the world. We look forward to the positive impact this new technology brings and are thankful for plasma donors who continue to do the amazing every day when they donate at CSL Plasma." CSL Chief Operating Officer Paul McKenzie CSL Plasma believes features of the new Rika system can enable the collection of more plasma, in shorter periods of time, supporting quality and safety, and, ultimately, better serving patients who rely on plasma-based therapies. One of the first plasma donors to experience the Rika system, Kelly Geiser is a resident of the Denver area. She has donated plasma since 2017, and is a Platinum level donor as part of CSL Plasma's donor loyalty program, iGive Rewards®. Geiser appreciated that she was able to complete the donation procedure with the new technology in under 35 minutes and in the fastest donation time she has experienced, while every plasma donor's experience will vary. Donating plasma is also personal for Geiser, who says that therapies made from plasma have helped her and her family, including a parent who recently underwent emergency surgery. "It feels good knowing I'm helping people and, who knows, I might've helped somebody I know," said Geiser. According to Terumo BCT, benefits of the Rika Plasma Donation System include Rika completes one plasma collection in 35 minutes or less on average. The proprietary design of the system's centrifuge maximizes the plasma yield per cycle. The Rika Plasma Donation System was designed to allow no more than 200 milliliters of blood cells outside the donor's body, resulting in a low extracorporeal volume, which may contribute to a more comfortable donor experience. With less than 200 milliliters of blood cells outside the donor's body at any given time, should the initial procedure not be completed, the donor can return and donate without being deferred. The device is designed with an advanced user interface to guide CSL Plasma front-line employees. Operators can quickly and confidently resolve alarms, thanks to guidance provided on the Rika system's touchscreen, which also alerts operators about situations that require attention and provides suggested actions to resolve the situation. The system allows for real-time data analytics to drive device maintenance and repairs. CSL Plasma is implementing the new devices at Colorado centers and then expanding to other U.S. locations, providing donors more opportunities to "do the amazing" and be rewarded for their generosity. "As a long-time leader in our industry, CSL Plasma looks forward to this new plasmapheresis technology to delight our plasma donors and attract new donors while supporting a better operating experience for our employees," said Walter Charles, CSL Plasma Senior Vice President and General Manager. "As we complete the implementation of new technology at U.S. centers, we continue to address the critical and ongoing need for human plasma to produce life-saving medicines for people with serious and rare diseases." About CSL Plasma CSL Plasma operates one of the world's largest and most sophisticated plasma collection networks, with more than 300 plasma collection centers in the U.S., Europe and China. Headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, CSL Plasma is a subsidiary of CSL Behring, a global biotherapeutics company and a member of the CSL Group of companies. Plasma collected at CSL Plasma facilities is used by CSL Behring for the sole purpose of manufacturing lifesaving plasma-derived therapies for people in more than 100 countries. The parent company, CSL Limited headquartered in Melbourne, Australia, employs more than 25,000 people. About CSL Behring CSL Behring is a global biotherapeutics leader driven by our promise to save lives. Focused on serving patients' needs by using the latest technologies, we discover, develop and deliver innovative therapies for people living with conditions in the immunology, hematology, cardiovascular and metabolic, respiratory, and transplant therapeutic areas. We use three strategic scientific platforms of plasma fractionation, recombinant protein technology, and cell and gene therapy to support continued innovation and continually refine ways in which products can address unmet medical needs and help patients lead full lives.

Read More

INDUSTRIAL IMPACT

GluBio Completes Series A+ Financing of $22 Million to Advance the Development of Novel TPD Drugs

GluBio Therapeutics Inc | August 02, 2022

GluBio Therapeutics, a biotech company focused on developing novel targeted protein degradation (TPD) drugs, recently announced the completion of Series A+ financing of $22 million. This round is led by Qiming Venture Partners and joined by Lilly Asia Ventures and Kaitai Capital, bringing the total capital raised to nearly $90 million since its establishment in March, 2021. The investment will help advance two molecular glue degraders with best-in-class potential into the clinic for hematological malignancies, accelerate the lead optimization entry of three first-in-class TPD drugs for solid tumors and inflammatory diseases, and further upgrade GluBio's proprietary TPD discovery platform and screening capabilities tailored for rapid discovery and optimization of small molecule protein degraders for 'undruggable' therapeutic targets. "We are thrilled to advance molecular-glue and heterobifunctional protein degraders, which hold a great promise of eliminating disease-causing proteins that are not amenable to traditional therapeutic approaches. In the past 16 months, GluBio made tremendous progress in developing best-in-class and/or first-in-class TPD assets and state-of-the-art TPD platform, fully maximizing the therapeutic and commercial potential of TPD technologies. We completed this round within two months of Series A financing. We are grateful for the unwavering confidence investors have in our assets and platform, and confident that this round will accelerate a smooth and successful execution of our pipeline and platform." Gang Lu, Ph.D., GluBio Founder and CEO Dr. Kan Chen, Partner of Qiming Venture Parners, said, "Targeted protein degradation is a revolutionary technology in the biopharmaceutical field. GluBio team has extensive experience in targeted protein degradation and has built a strong platform for molecular glue and new target discovery technologies, making it a promising leader in TPD field. Qiming Venture Partners is pleased to continue our support to the company's development and hopes that GluBio will accelerate its R&D and industrialization process to bring more unmet need targets to the clinical stage and new treatment options to patients worldwide." About GluBio Therapeutics, Inc GluBio Therapeutics is a pioneering TPD company dedicated to developing targeted protein degraders for human diseases with unmet medical needs. Founded by seasoned drug developers with deep knowledge and expertise in TPD drug discovery, the company has established a proprietary TPD discovery platform and robust screening capability. GluBio is advancing a diverse pipeline of highly selective small-molecule degraders across multiple therapeutic areas including oncology and immunology. The company has research operations in both San Diego, CA, USA and Shanghai, China. About Qiming Venture Partners Founded in 2006, Qiming Venture Partners is a leading China venture capital firm with offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Suzhou, Hong Kong, Seattle, Boston and the San Francisco Bay Area. Currently, Qiming Venture Partners manages eleven US Dollar funds and seven RMB funds with $9.4 billion in capital raised. Since our establishment, we have invested in outstanding companies in the Technology and Consumer (T&C) and Healthcare industries at the early and growth stages. About Lilly Asia Ventures Founded in 2008, Lilly Asia Ventures is a leading biomedical venture capital firm with offices in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Palo Alto. Our vision is to become the trusted partner for exceptional entrepreneurs seeking smart capital and to build great companies developing breakthrough products that treat diseases and improve human health. About Kaitai Capital Founded in 2009, Kaitai Capital is an investment management organization that mainly engages in venture capital, private equity, and wealth management businesses. Fields of investment include biotechnology, healthcare services, digital technology, agriculture technology and etc. Currently, the asset under management of Kaitai Capital has reached 50 billion RMB.

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MEDTECH

Synthego Launches Engineered Cell Libraries to Validate Targets with Speed and Accelerate Drug Discovery

SYNTHEGO | August 03, 2022

Synthego, the genome engineering company, announced the launch of Engineered Cell Libraries, a novel offering that further enables access to CRISPR by providing arrayed CRISPR-edited cells for direct use in functional screening assays. The innovative solution leverages Synthego’s Eclipse™ Platform. This high-throughput cell engineering platform delivers cell-based models for disease research by providing highly predictable CRISPR-engineered cells at scale through the integration of engineering, bioinformatics, and proprietary science. Synthego’s Engineered Cell Libraries provide unparalleled speed, scalability, and efficiency to accelerate the drug discovery process by enabling a faster path between experimental design and execution. As the newest addition to Synthego's Engineered Cells product line, the offering is a custom arrayed library of multi-guide™ knockout cell pools (immortalized or iPSC) delivered ready-made to researchers, efficiently enabling them to bypass the need for equipment and reagent sourcing, transfection, generation of an extensive CRISPR library, and hiring and training of staff. This allows researchers to overcome common hurdles associated with CRISPR-based target discovery and focus specifically on the science. “Arrayed screening approaches are more sensitive, compatible with a broader assortment of downstream assays, and can yield data that is more readily interpretable than the more commonly used pooled approach but are underutilized due to lack of infrastructure and limited bandwidth. With Engineered Cell Libraries, Synthego continues to provide transformative solutions for accelerated drug discovery which ultimately can bring a wider range of therapeutics to market faster.” Travis Maures, Synthego’s Chief Technology Officer With Engineered Cell Libraries, scientists specify the human or mouse cell type (Immortalized or iPSC available at launch) and gene targets they desire to knockout to generate a custom “Knockout Cell Library.” The cells are then edited on Synthego’s Eclipse Platform, which handles guide design, cell line optimization, editing through transfection, and assessment of editing efficiencies, so cells are ready to screen upon arrival. Engineered Cell Libraries on the Eclipse Platform additionally benefit customers with Scalability and flexibility - Engineered Cell Libraries allow researchers to maximize their screening power and identify more targets earlier in the screening process. Predictability and transparency - Synthego’s multi-guide™ technology achieves reliably high knockout efficiencies so researchers can confidently proceed with their screens. Cell engineering expertise and support - Synthego uses its expertise to bring automation innovation that provides greater consistency in outcomes and scalability. Synthego’s Eclipse Platform and Engineered Cell Libraries enable a wide range of applications in research and development across various disease areas and research disciplines such as oncology and neurology. Engineered Cell Libraries were employed in a recent study that used genetic screening to identify host factors that either facilitate or inhibit infection by SARS-CoV-2 and that could potentially be targeted with existing drugs that have been approved for other indications. “We were able to quickly combine our proteomic expertise with Synthego's genome engineering capabilities in a matter of weeks,” said Nevan J. Krogan, Director, Quantitative Biosciences Institute, University of California, San Francisco. “Normally, work such as this would take many years. We were able to quickly pinpoint which human genes are important for infection, and that allowed us to jump to which ones if we were able to drug them, could have a positive pharmacological effect on SARS-CoV-2 infection. That whole pipeline allowed us to identify several potential drug candidates, several of which we're still looking at.” Ultimately, Synthego’s goal is to enable scientists to spend less time thinking about method development and more time running their functional assays. The addition of Engineered Cell Libraries is driving impact in biopharma research and development. ABOUT SYNTHEGO Synthego was founded to revolutionize genome engineering technology, helping translate genomics into the clinic and ultimately making engineered biological therapies accessible to all patients. The company leverages machine learning, automation, and gene editing to build platforms for science at scale. With its foundations in engineering disciplines, the company’s platforms vertically integrate proprietary hardware, software, bioinformatics, chemistries, and molecular biology to advance both basic research and therapeutic development programs. With its technologies cited in more than a thousand peer-reviewed publications and utilized by thousands of commercial and academic researchers and therapeutic drug developers, Synthego is at the forefront of innovation enabling the next generation of medicines by delivering genome editing at an unprecedented scale.

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