Recovering scientist turned early stage VC A biotech optimist fighting gravity

Biotech M&A: Steadily Delivering Returns in 2013
February 5, 2014

While all eyes have been on the raging IPO market in biotech over the past year, the private biotech M&A market has continued its fourth straight year of impressive results. Yesterday, HBM Partners released their always-excellent annual report (here) on

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JPM 2014: Broad Optimism About Biotech Innovation
January 17, 2014

The annual biotech pilgrimage to San Francisco has come to an end, and the upbeat, optimistic sentiment from #JPM14 bodes well as a barometer of the healthcare industry. Amidst the presentations and partying, there was lots of bullish thinking about

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Zafgen Opens A New Front In Its Obesity Strategy: Prader-Willi Syndrome
January 15, 2014

Today Zafgen announced its initial results from proof-of-concept study in patients with an obesity-related orphan disease called Prader-Willi Syndrome (PWS). The news was also covered by Andrew Pollack in the NY Times this morning (here) so I won’t bother with

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The Arteaus Therapeutics Story: R&D Externalization with Eli Lilly
January 13, 2014

Today, we are excited to announce that we’ve successfully exited Arteaus Therapeutics to Eli Lilly (see announcement here, here).  It’s fair to say it’s been a superbly executed example of R&D externalization and a win–win for Lilly and Arteaus. Before

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Top 10 Little White Lies Told At The JP Morgan Healthcare Conference
January 9, 2014

Next week kicks off the biggest healthcare investor meeting of the year in San Francisco.  It’s a giant circus of activity revolving around the Westin St Francis in Union Square, with more than 10,000 people gathered from biotech, pharma, startups,

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Perspectives on VC-Backed Biotech: Looking Backward & Forward
January 3, 2014

Tis the season for reflecting and predicting, so I figured I’d follow the custom and share some of my thoughts about the state of biotech in 2013 and the year to come. Reflections on 2013. The Biotech IPO Returns.  This


Introducing Atlas’ Biotech Seed Class of 2013
December 17, 2013

Seed-led venture creation is our focus at Atlas, and, with the closing of our new fund, 2013 has been a very active year for us.  As part of a year-end reflection, it’s a good opportunity to present a quick sketch

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2013’s Untold Biotech Story: Success Of The 2011-12 IPO Class
December 12, 2013

The past year has certainly been the most exciting one for Biotech IPOs since 2000, with dozens of new offerings and compelling therapeutic narratives.  But focusing on these new IPOs misses an equal if not more exciting story: the significant

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Crowdfunding: Angels in Biotech, or Devil in the Details?
December 11, 2013

In the tech-dominated venture capital world, 2013 could be called the year of the crowd.  With the JOBS Act and the emergence of credible platforms like AngelList, crowdfunding has come into the mainstream in a meaningful way. Social media, software,


Correlation’s Fresh Look At Venture Capital Returns
November 18, 2013

The broad underperformance of the venture capital asset class during the past decade is widely discussed; there’s a frequently-cited assertion that U.S. venture returns trailed the overall public equity stock market in the 2000s. Few if any published analyses have


Science Being Studied: Replication, Publication, And Resource Allocation
November 8, 2013

Scientific reproducibility hit mainstream this month with a feature article and editorial in The Economist; they highlight issues around the failure to replicate peer-reviewed research, academic biases found in science, use of scarce resources in national science budgets, and even share a primer in statistics


Biotech IPOs: The Exit Challenge As Lockups Expire
October 31, 2013

Six months ago the biotech industry was on the verge of a sizzling season for IPOs, and since then, on average, we’ve seen one new biotech IPO per week.  Valuations of many of these offerings have been impressive, and this