This week in biotech, indirect effects were predominant.
The generally poor performance of most recent biotech IPOs has indirectly boosted M&A activity. Only 1 of 8 U.S. biotech IPOs in 2010 is currently trading above its IPO price. IMRIS was the last Canadian biotech IPO, completed in November 2007 at $6.00, and it is currently trading at $5.50. M&A exits are healthy, though, with two recent sales at decent prices.
As we pass the 10-year anniversary of the sequencing of the first human genome, some say we have little to show for it. Part of the reason the genome has not immediately translated to clinical results is the large number of indirect ways the genome is regulated. Environmental cues lead to “epigenetic” effects — changes in genetic behaviour that are not driven by changes in genes, as a Canadian-authored editorial in this week’s Nature points out.