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42 - Valley of Death and the Role of Venture Philanthropy in Alzheimer’s Disease Drug Development

from Section 7 - Funding and Financing Alzheimer’s Disease Drug Development

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  03 March 2022

Jeffrey Cummings
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Jefferson Kinney
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Howard Fillit
Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation
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There is currently just one disease-modifying therapy for Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Increasingly, AD R&D is being performed by academic groups and early-stage biotech companies. Many of these programs stall in the “valley of death”, due to insufficient funding, expertise, and tools required to develop and commercialize drugs. To bridge this gap, the venture philanthropy model has emerged as a complimentary driver of translational research amongst public and private funders. Venture philanthropy combines deep disease-focused expertise and networks, with funding in high-risk/high-reward drug programs. Funding is structured to enable returns on investment, which are reinvested into further drug development projects. Venture philanthropies have contributed to advancing more preclinical AD candidates into clinical trials and helping academic and early-stage biotech programs reach critical scientific and business milestones. With recent examples of successful returns on investment, more capital is available to feed the AD therapeutic pipeline, expand clinical trials, and develop biomarkers to support these programs.

Alzheimer's Disease Drug Development
Research and Development Ecosystem
, pp. 480 - 485
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

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