The latest news from German pharma, including Bayer’s USD 2 billion acquisition of San Diego’s Vividion Therapeutics; Boehringer Ingelheim’s new investment in a Vienna production facility; BioNTech’s plans to inaugurate an mRNA manufacturing network in Africa; and the termination of the GSK/Merck KGaA cancer drug partnership.


German drug giant Bayer plants flag in San Diego with $2B biotech acquisition (San Diego Tribune)

Vividion Therapeutics was poised to go public until Bayer offered it a blend of funding and flexibility that the Sorrento Valley biotech couldn’t refuse.


Boehringer Ingelheim inaugurates Vienna production facility (BioPharma Reporter)

Boehringer Ingelheim has inaugurated a state-of-the-art biopharmaceutical production facility in Vienna, Austria: representing the single largest investment in the company’s history.


BioNTech Plans to Initiate the Construction of an mRNA Vaccine Manufacturing Facility in Africa in mid-2022 (Globe Newswire)

BioNTech signs Memorandum of Understanding with Rwandan Government and the Institut Pasteur de Dakar. Construction of the first mRNA manufacturing facility in Africa is planned to be initiated in mid-2022

First manufacturing facility will become a node in a decentralized and robust African end-to-end manufacturing network

Development and implementation of a scalable regional manufacturing network to enable an annual manufacturing capacity of several hundreds of million mRNA vaccine doses


Homeopathy Doesn’t Work. So Why Do So Many Germans Believe in It? (Bloomberg)

How Natalie Grams, who once abandoned her medical education to study alternative therapies, became Germany’s most prominent homeopathy skeptic.


GSK, Merck KGaA end cancer drug partnership after study results disappoint (Biopharma Dive)

GlaxoSmithKline and Merck KGaA are ending a cancer drug partnership they set up two and a half years ago, announcing Thursday they agreed to terminate their agreement after disappointing results from two clinical trials.

GSK had paid German Merck 300 million euros in February 2019 to gain access to the drug, called bintrafusp alfa. Another 3.4 billion euros, or about $3.9 billion at current exchange rates, were promised should the drug succeed in testing for lung cancer and hit certain regulator and commercial milestones.

None of those milestone payments were paid, according to Merck KGaA, as data from a trial in lung cancer were negative and research by the two companies won’t proceed further.