Bayer, a German multinational, pharmaceutical and life sciences company, and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard (Boston, USA) announced the launch of the joint Precision Cardiology Laboratory, which will pursue novel scientific insights to enable the development of new therapies for patients with cardiovascular diseases such as heart failure.
Heart failure – a general diagnosis given when the heart doesn’t pump effectively – is a composite of multiple factors, and as such requires new tools and methods to gain deeper knowledge to benefit patients. The scientists at the joint laboratory will combine Broad Institute’s innovative methods for basic science discovery such as single cell sequencing and clinical expertise with Bayer’s long experience in drug development to discover new potential therapeutics.
Located at the Broad Institute in Boston, the Precision Cardiology Laboratory will bring scientists from both organizations into one laboratory working side by side, enabling the joint team to faster translate concepts from the lab into clinical trials and bring new therapeutic treatments to patients more quickly than traditional research partnerships. The Precision Cardiology Laboratory’s goal is to develop high-resolution, single-cell maps of cardiovascular tissues in human and animal models. Using tissue samples donated by healthy individuals as well as people suffering from cardiovascular disease, researchers will build datasets to accelerate insights into heart failure.
Under the terms of the agreement, Bayer is investing up to $22 million to joint research projects over the next five years. Ultimately, the lab will involve about 20 people with affiliations divided between the two organizations. The partners will build on established structures of their existing collaboration including joint review processes of individual projects endorsed by the joint steering committee. The rights to the research findings are shared equally between the partners. Upon reaching predefined decision points, Bayer can exercise an option, triggering predefined milestone and ultimately royalty payments.
The Broad-Bayer partnership first began in 2013 with a recently prolonged oncology program. In 2015, the organizations launched a cardiovascular-specific collaboration to leverage insights from human genetics to help create new cardiovascular therapies.