We attended the 13th International Conference on Alzheimer`s & Parkinson’s Diseases in Vienna. Messages we received from the meeting are very encouraging, but patience for new therapies will be needed. Participants felt that we are on the verge of something.
Excitement in the Alzheimer’s Disease (Alzheimer’s) community for Biogen’s aducanumab (anti-abeta antibody) data remains high, as for the first time a disease modifying agent yielded a clinically relevant signal in 2015. The community seems to agree, that the recent failures of Lilly’s solanezumab (another anti-abeta antibody) and Merck’s BACE inhibitor do not question the current understanding of the disease but will help to positively influence future initiatives. Recent research work recognises that Alzheimer’s is a highly heterogenous disease – every patient is different – and that several disease mechanisms are at play.
Did you know that R&D expenses of the 15 biggest pharma companies have increased by almost 50% since 2016 to USD 133 bn in 2021? And expenses will continue to increase. Roche alone for example will spend close to CHF 15 bn on R&D in 2022, 1 bn more than in 2021.
We attended the ESMO (European Society for Medical Oncology) annual oncology congress in Paris from Sept. 9-13. We came away very positive from the meeting, though two souls remain in our chest. On one side we see the amazing potential and the opportunities for new oncology therapies. On the other side complexity seems to potentially increase and so does competition in the space. But what to do as an investor? Find some proposals in our ESMO Thoughts from the Street.
September is traditionally one of the most important conference months, as second quarter reporting is largely complete and third quarter reporting has not yet started. We attended the 19th annual Goldman Sachs European Medtech and HC Services Conference 2022, held in London on September 7-8, again in a physical setting. While we remain mindful of all the sector headwinds, we left the conference more convinced that there are selectively attractive investment opportunities at current levels.