Fetal Bovine Serum & Potential Avenues for Sourcing

Sterile filtered Fetal Bovine Serum (FBS) is a critical ingredient in growing cells in-vitro due to its growth accelerating properties. It is extracted from the fetus of domestic cattle when they are slaughtered for beef production, thereby making FBS a by-product of the beef industry. Animal vaccines, pharmaceutical drugs and biotechnology are some key industries where FBS is mainly used in cell culture. In the U.S., FBS has escalated in demand, owing to the growth of the pharmaceutical industry and R&D spend within the States. Severe climate conditions in the last few years leading to restricted availability in the U.S. and worldwide are some major price drivers of FBS. This has further led to numerous mergers and acquisitions among market participants, resulting in only four to five major suppliers of FBS in the United States. FBS can also be imported from USDA-approved countries such as Costa Rica, Chile, Mexico, Uruguay, Honduras, Iceland and Nicaragua. Brazil is the largest provider of FBS in the world but its product is currently not permitted to be imported into the United States.

Biosimilars: A New Era in Therapeutics

Biosimilars are complex and large molecular weight biological compounds produced by genetic engineering. In recent years there has been increasing demand for biosimilars, mostly due to lesser cost of treatment in comparison to traditional drug molecules. Moreover, biosimilar drugs have the potential to reach close to a 30% operating profit margin; considerably high compared to the profit margin of generic drugs, which is around 20%.

Virtual Clinical Trials Landscape

In recent years, there has been an increasing scope of decentralization in clinical pharmaceutical trials. Various pharma companies such as Pfizer and Sanofi are investing in the emerging concept of virtual clinical trials. The average capital cost of conducting the FDA's standard Phase I/II/III traditional clinical trial is around USD 1.3 Billion. However, virtual clinical trials eliminate the cost associated with site selection and clinical research laboratory setup.

How Digital Disruption Is Augmenting Patient Engagement in Healthcare

Eighty percent of Internet users seek online health information, 66 percent of Internet users look online for information about a specific disease or medical problem, and one in 20 Google searches is for health-related information.

A Perspective on Market Access to Immunization

In today’s environment, predominance of deadly infectious diseases coupled with rising healthcare awareness in emerging economies are the major factors driving demand for immunization.

Impact of the IMS/Quintiles Merger

Healthcare Information provider IMS Health is expected to merge with leader in CRO space Quintiles Transnational by October 2016. IMS Health has agreed to buy Quintiles for USD 9 Billion & the merged entities total market capitalisation is worth USD 18 Billion. The merged entity, to be called Quintiles IMS Holdings, will be the house for best of pharma research skills and analytical data.

Overcoming Challenges in Pharmaceutical Competitive Intelligence

The space of pharmaceutical competitive intelligence (CI) is becoming increasingly complex with increasing numbers of influencers and channels reaching out to them. In the current fluidic landscape, understanding a competitor’s move plays a vital role in structuring business strategies.

Sourcing Strategies for Functional Service Providers

Pharmaceutical companies have long been under pressure from regulatory authorities to bring new drugs to market at an affordable cost. In order to meet this demand in a cost-effective and efficient way, biopharma outsources its critical functions as a way to manage the workload.

Changing Dynamics - Pharmaceutical Market Access

Pharmaceutical companies have been increasingly focused on their market access strategies, with market access becoming the key concern amid tightening healthcare budgets. Market access primarily denotes the process by which a pharmaceutical company makes its product available to the patient population.


Allergan’s pending takeover by pharma giant, Pfizer has been in the news for a while as it would have been the biggest takeover—$160 billion—in the industry. Interestingly, the Obama administration was not enthusiastic about the deal that would kill a huge tax revenue from the new entity. The tax law change by the U.S.

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