Caring Cross’ leadership provides key contributions to industry report from Innovative Genomics Institute
GAITHERSBURG, Md., Aug. 14, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Caring Cross, a 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to accelerating the development of advanced medicines and enabling access to cures for all patients, everywhere, today announced its role in a newly published white paper from the Innovative Genomics Institute, titled “Making Genetic Therapies Affordable and Accessible.” Boro Dropulić, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Executive Director, and Rimas Orentas, Ph.D., Co-founder and Scientific Director, contributed to sections of the report focused on manufacturing, regulation, and funding models, with the report specifically highlighting Caring Cross as a non-profit focused on improving the accessibility, affordability, and applicability of CAR-T technology and stem cell gene therapy.
The white paper is a result of yearlong research by the Innovative Genomics Institute during which the organization sought input from global thought leaders and scientists with expertise in preclinical development of genetic therapies, healthcare economics, intellectual property rights, and biomanufacturing. The Institute was founded by Nobel laureate Jennifer Doudna, Ph.D., who was concerned that the innovations that Crispr-based approaches to genome editing enabled, and gene-based therapies in general, would not be accessible to all. The report’s findings focused on identifying steps that academic institutes and for-profit companies can take to improve the affordability and accessibility of genetic therapies. Caring Cross’ contribution was essential in order to outline how non-profit entities can also develop and deliver gene-based therapies.
Key findings of the report include:
- The need for a dynamic cost-plus model for pricing new genetic therapies that could lead to significant cost savings compared to genetic therapies currently on the market;
- The need to develop an alternative organizational structure that requires a lower rate of return among for-profit corporations, non-profit medical research, and public benefit corporations to help control costs;
- The need to improve academic technology transfer offices (TTOs) that can play a significant role in affordability and access via licensing provisions that require access plans;
- The potential to manufacture genetic therapies utilizing various innovations, point-of-care manufacturing, and regulatory streamlining to lower prices while maintaining efficacy and safety.
The summary and full report can be found here: https://innovativegenomics.org/atf-report/
“The Innovative Genomics Institute white paper expertly summarizes the issues surrounding affordability and access of genetic therapies,” said Dr. Dropulić. “Broad access of affordable CAR-T cell and other genetic therapies is restricted by current product manufacturing and distribution models, which drive up their cost. New models are needed to reduce cost and improve access for all who need these potentially life-saving therapies.”
“The costs associated with gene therapies is prohibitive in many developing countries, leaving many without access to significantly more effective treatments than the current standards of care,” added Dr. Orentas. “Without a doubt, lowering the costs of CAR-T and other cell therapies provides an opportunity for innovators like Caring Cross to optimize the process by which these treatments are developed and democratize their availability to patients that need them.”
About Caring Cross
Caring Cross is a 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to accelerating the development of advanced medicines and ensuring access to cures for all patients, everywhere. To enable its mission, Caring Cross is developing technologies and therapeutic candidates to improve the accessibility, affordability, and applicability of CGTs like CAR-T technology and stem cell gene therapy. Caring Cross founded Vector BioMed, a for-profit vector contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO), specializing in rapid lentiviral vector manufacturing solutions, to provide the industry a source of affordable high-quality GMP Lentiviral vectors. For more information on Caring Cross visit https://caringcross.org/. For more information on Vector BioMed visit https://vectorbiomed.com/.