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January 21, 2015
J.P. Morgan 33rd annual healthcare conference highlights
By: Anne O'Riordan

Last week, from January 12 to 15, I had the privilege of attending the 33rd J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco. The conference was packed with side meetings, speaker programs and networking events focused on the major changes in the healthcare industry.

This year, based on product launches and pipelines, I detected a new sense of confidence among participants, with common themes around strong science, patient outcomes and industry/cross-industry collaborations. Participants also seemed to recognize the need for change to enable organizations to face increasing reimbursement demands, regulatory oversight, consumer expectations and substitution choices.

Technology and data were central to a number of new opportunities:

  • 23andMe launched their Accelerated Research service, leveraging genomic data to perform early stage hypothesis validation in silica.

  • David Epstein from Novartis explained the Qualcomm-Novartis decision to establish a $100 million venture fund for startups developing “beyond the pill” technologies.

  • Alex Gorsky, CEO of Johnson & Johnson, referenced 3-D printing, sensor technology, micro-electronics and optics bringing real-time access to biometric data, diagnostics and drug delivery. He also discussed the Cloud and the explosion of wearable devices, which are enabling personalized solutions for better health outcomes.

The conference is traditionally marked by the announcement of significant deals and this year’s event was no exception:

As usual, this was a wonderful event, providing private and public biotechnology and life sciences companies a unique opportunity to present to and meet with investors and pharmaceutical executives from around the world.

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