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 Jul 20, 2018


STAT’s weekly biotech podcast, breaking down the latest news, digging deep into industry goings-on, and giving you a preview of the week to come.

Episode Date
228: A surprise success in Alzheimer's and how FDA history seeded modern controversy
Lecanemab, a new Alzheimer's treatment from partners Biogen and Eisai, succeeded in a pivotal clinical trial, and we explain the surprising development and its sweeping implications. Then, oncologist Mikkael Sekeres joins us to talk about his new book, which is a history of the FDA and an insider’s look at one of the agency’s most contentious drug approval hearings.
Sep 29, 2022
227: Biden's Covid declaration, twilight of the SPAC, & genome editing 2.0
Heidi Tworek, a professor at the University of British Columbia and expert on public health communication, joins us to discuss President Biden's declaration that "the pandemic is over" and how leaders around the world are talking about Covid-19 as it enters its third year. We’ll also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including the twilight of the SPAC boom, the coming evolution of genome editing, and the next big trial in Alzheimer’s disease.
Sep 22, 2022
226: Pharma's telehealth gold mine, the return of the biotech IPO, & a merger deferred
Our colleague Katie Palmer joins us to explain a burgeoning trend in pharmaceutical advertising that has health policy experts alarmed. We also discuss the White House's investment in biotech, a bellwether IPO, and the latest twist in the Merck-Seagen saga.
Sep 15, 2022
225: Illumina's $8 billion limbo, a new treatment for ALS, & Emirati biotech funding
Our colleague Matthew Herper joins us to discuss how Illumina, the biggest company in genomic sequencing, got into an $8 billion predicament. We also discuss a dramatic development for a new ALS treatment, the latest in cancer research, and a well-funded new player in biotech venture capital.
Sep 08, 2022
224: The anti-aging research boom, the Godfather of biotech, & the future of Biogen
Our colleague Megan Molteni joins us to explain the scientific discoveries, rampant hype, and Silicon Valley billions behind the burgeoning field of longevity research. Then, we discuss the remarkable career of Stelios Papadopoulos, the venerated Godfather of biotech who faces the daunting task of saving Biogen.
Sep 01, 2022
223: Fauci's non-retirement, grading biotech VCs, & a bellwether IPO
Our colleague Helen Branswell joins to explain the Covid-19 booster debate, the Biden Administration’s monkeypox response, and the long career of the soon-to-step-down Anthony Fauci. We also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including a milestone for gene therapy, the tentative return of an IPO market, and the venture capital league table.
Aug 25, 2022
222: Private equity in autism care, a watershed FDA approval, & the future of ALS treatment
First, STAT's Tara Bannow joins us to discuss how private equity's mounting interest in autism care has created an untenable situation for many parents in the U.S. We also explain the implications of Bluebird Bio's long-awaited FDA approval, a controversial treatment for ALS, and the ups and downs of Merck's reported interest in buying Seagen.
Aug 18, 2022
221: Big egos in Big Science, the return of Merger Monday, & the fallout over drug pricing
Are biotech's fortunes finally changing? Is Big Science impeding actual science? And what will Medicare negotiation mean for drug prices? STAT's Jason Mast joins us to discuss Jim Wilson, a pioneering scientist synonymous with the rise of gene therapy who staffers say presided over a toxic, abusive workplace. We also explain the latest news in the life sciences, including a multibillion-dollar deal, a novel approach to treating schizophrenia, and what the Senate drug pricing legislation means for the pharmaceutical industry.
Aug 11, 2022
220: The last-minute push for drug pricing reform, Alnylam's success, and Sarepta's gamble
Is drug pricing reform really happening this time? Are things finally turning around for biotech? And is it ever wise to tweet your food? Rachel Cohrs, STAT's Washington correspondent, joins us to explain how congressional Democrats are on the verge of a coup in drug pricing — and what could still stand in their way. We also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including some hotly anticipated data from Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, a $4 billion buyout deal, and other surprisingly good news for biotech.
Aug 04, 2022
219: Helen Branswell on monkeypox, plus: an FDA controversy and fake Alzheimer's data
Can monkeypox be contained? Are snortable Covid-19 vaccines on the way? And when is a GIF worth $200,000? STAT's Helen Branswell joins us to explain the latest in the monkeypox outbreak and how health authorities are struggling to contain it. We also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including some faked Alzheimer’s data, a brewing FDA controversy, and what it means when a scientific discovery gets turned into an NFT.
Jul 28, 2022
218: Well-paid CEOs, behind the scenes at Moderna, & Biogen's CEO search
Does any CEO deserve $500 million a year? How did Moderna hit it big? And who wants to run Biogen? STAT's Bob Herman joins us to explain why health care CEOs get paid so much — and why company-reported numbers don't tell the full story. Wall Street Journal reporter Peter Loftus calls in to talk about his book chronicling how Moderna went from secretive startup to household name. And we discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including Amazon's latest multibillion-dollar foray into primary care and Biogen's search for a new CEO.
Jul 21, 2022
217: CRISPR for the heart, biotech's recovery, & what it means to be a 'hot girl'
Can CRISPR edit out a heart attack? What happens on #GutTok? And is health care recession-proof? Sek Kathiresan, cardiologist and CEO of Verve Therapeutics, joins us to explain the company's work on preventing heart disease with genome editing. Then, STAT's Isabella Cueto joins us to discuss "Hot girls have IBS," an internet in-joke that evolved into a movement for people with chronic illness. We also break down the latest news in the life sciences, including a long-awaited victory for Novavax and ostensible good news for biotech.
Jul 14, 2022
216: VC malaise, FDA confusion, & yet another Alzheimer's debate
Is the era of the unicorn over? What's gotten into the FDA? And will a NASH drug ever work? Our colleague Allison DeAngelis joins us to explain how the prolonged downturn for biotech stocks is stoking anxiety among venture capitalists. We also discuss an FDA plot twist for a novel ALS treatment, a second shot for a once-promising liver drug, and the latest in the Covid-19 pandemic.
Jul 07, 2022
215: Medical privacy post-Roe, fixing clinical trials, & the next Covid vaccines
How do you stop a Covid surge? Why are clinical trials so white? And what are the limits of HIPAA? Our colleague Eric Boodman joins us to discuss whether an oft-cited federal law can shield reproductive health data from state law enforcement in the wake of Roe v. Wade being overturned. Then, STAT's Angus Chen calls in to relate the story of an ambitious study and the quest to finally make clinical trials more equitable. We also explain a momentous FDA meeting and the debate over just what the Covid-19 vaccines of the future should contain.
Jun 30, 2022
214: Juul's doomsday, Merck's buyout plans, & the next Theranos verdict
Just how powerful is the FDA? Is Merck about to spend $40 billion? And what's a "Puff Bar"? STAT Washington correspondent Nicholas Florko joins us to discuss the FDA's decision to ban the sale of Juul Labs vaping products and a proposal to reduce the amount of nicotine in cigarettes. We’ll also explain the latest news in the life sciences, including a rumored blockbuster buyout and the next Theranos verdict.
Jun 23, 2022
213: How the Fed affects biotech, Paul Offit on vaccines for kids, & another Alzheimer's setback
Will biotech stocks ever recover? How well do Covid-19 vaccines work for kids? And can anything stop the amyloid hypothesis? Longtime biotech investor Les Funtleyder joins us to explain why the recent interest rate hike is bad for biotech and just what it will take for the industry to get out of its slump. Then, vaccinologist and FDA adviser Paul Offit calls in to talk about the impending authorization of Covid-19 vaccines for young children and what it means for the future of the pandemic. We also explain the latest disappointing clinical trial in Alzheimer's disease and some perplexing data on Pfizer's Covid-19 antiviral.
Jun 16, 2022
212: Applause-worthy cancer data, the long wait for Novavax, & the next FDA controversy
When is data "practice-changing"? How many Covid-19 vaccines do we need? And what does it mean when the FDA asks for more time? With the world's largest cancer conference just concluded, we explain the most important data presented at the meeting, including a blockbuster clinical trial that promises to change the treatment of advanced breast cancer. We also discuss an FDA controversy in the making, a pair of new Covid-19 vaccines, and the frustrating process of finding new treatments for depression.
Jun 09, 2022
211: Biotech's catch-22, a $100 genome, & dealing with monkeypox
Will gene therapy ever live up to expectations? Can anyone break up the genomics monopoly? And is innovation actually bad for biotech? This week, health care strategist Jared Holz of Oppenheimer joins us to discuss the weekend's big oncology conference and what it will take to change Wall Street's dire view of the drug industry. We also discuss a weighty FDA meeting on gene therapy, the potential of a $100 genome, and how the expanding monkeypox outbreak is creating challenges for public health agencies.
Jun 02, 2022
210: Covid vaccines for the youngest kids, ASCO preview, & a biotech CEO’s arrest on murder charges
ovid vaccines for the youngest kids are up for review, but which jab — Moderna or Pfizer — will parents choose? What’s on tap for ASCO, the biggest cancer research conference of the year? And a biotech CEO has been arrested in an alleged murder-for-hire scheme. First, we chat about the latest news in the life sciences. Then, we’re joined by physician and parent Jeremy Faust to discuss his take on the Covid vaccine data for children under 5.
May 26, 2022
Episode 209: Mysterious infections, dwindling Covid funds, & Shkreli out of prison
What happens when the White House runs out of Covid-19 money? Why are kids suddenly getting mysterious infections? And who's going to hire Martin Shkreli? First, STAT's Helen Branswell joins us to explain the medical mystery of hepatitis appearing worldwide in young children, plus the sudden outbreak of monkeypox. Then, STAT Washington correspondent Rachel Cohrs calls in to discuss how Congress' reluctance to pass a Covid funding bill might imperil the U.S. pandemic response just in time for a winter surge. We also chat about the latest news in the life sciences, including Clay Siegall's resignation and Martin Shkreli's release from federal prison.
May 19, 2022
Episode 208: A CEO's arrest, Pfizer's big deal, & Covid on the rise
Is the next Covid surge upon us? How do you make $350,000 a day in biotech? And when did Seagen find out about its CEO's arrest? First, we discuss the latest alarming trends in the Covid-19 pandemic and explaining the curious case of Moderna's briefly employed chief financial officer. Then we pick apart the implications of Pfizer's $11.6 billion acquisition of Biohaven and the struggles of a once-promising idea in cancer immunotherapy. Finally, we examine the arrest of Seagen CEO Clay Siegall and the unanswered questions about the company's response.
May 12, 2022
Episode 207: Succession at Biogen, surprises at Vertex, & a potential superspreader dinner
Who's going to run Biogen? Does Aduhelm have a future? And is it OK to shame reporters? This week, we delve into Biogen's twin announcements that the company is pulling the plug on Aduhelm and replacing its embattled CEO, discussing the future of Alzheimer's disease and just who might want to lead the company. We also explain the latest on Covid-19 vaccines, a strange situation for Vertex Pharmaceuticals, and the controversy surrounding the White House Correspondents' Dinner.
May 05, 2022
Episode 206: How cancer-killing cell therapies work, biotech's endless downturn, & an FDA conundrum
Can rewired cells cure some patients' cancer? Do biotech stocks ever go up? And why's it taking so long to get kids vaccinated for Covid-19? Immunologist Katy Rezvani of MD Anderson Cancer Center joins us to explain the massive potential of a new approach to treating wily tumors, one that repurposes human immune cells. We also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including an interesting hire at Novartis, the pediatric Covid-19 vaccine saga, and another negative milestone for biotech.
Apr 28, 2022
Episode 205: An ominous biotech deal, vaccines for kids, & 'breakthrough' devices
Can buyouts be bad news? Why can't Novavax meet a deadline? And what does "breakthrough" actually mean? First, we delve into why the latest big biotech acquisition has ominous implications for the downtrodden sector. Then, STAT's Mario Aguilar joins us to explain how a well-intentioned FDA program is benefiting companies over patients. We also discuss the latest pandemic news, including the ongoing debate over boosters and yet another delay for Novavax.
Apr 21, 2022
Episode 204: Leana Wen on the pandemic's new normal and whether Twitter is real life
Are we supposed to just get used to superspreader events? What's going with Editas Medicine? And why are people on Twitter so angry? Leana Wen, an emergency medicine physician and public health professor at George Washington University, joins us to talk about the many complexities of living with Covid-19 and the tricky task of defining "normal" in 2022. We also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including Editas' new CEO, Aduhelm's future, and the data on Covid-19 vaccines for kids.
Apr 14, 2022
Episode 203: What's next for Roche, a debate over second boosters, & Vertex's recent success
What's on tap for Roche and its closely followed cancer immunotherapy? Are we all headed for another jab with a Covid-19 vaccine? And what explains the recent success of Vertex Pharmaceuticals' R&D pipeline? This week, reporter Andrew Joseph joins us to discuss the FDA and its meeting with outside advisers that considered questions about Covid-19 boosters and the potential for updated vaccines that better match the circulating strains of SARS-CoV-2. We'll also dive into a look at Vertex and hear from its top executives about two experimental, but potentially groundbreaking, treatments for pain and type 1 diabetes. And as we often do, we’ll kick off the podcast with a Chatty Cathy round of hot takes on this week’s news.
Apr 07, 2022
Introducing: Color Code
As long as there's been a medical system, it's been one that is rife with instances of mistreatment — both on the individual and community levels — that have harmful effects on how Black Americans view the health care system. In the first episode of the new STAT podcast Color Code, host Nick St. Fleur speaks with doctors, researchers, and a patient who are all trying to repair the relationship between Black people and the medical institution. You can find Color Code on any platform you use to get your podcasts. Episodes are released every other week.
Mar 31, 2022
Episode 202: Helen Branswell on the pandemic, plus the next FDA debate & the perks of being a CEO
Are Covid-19 vaccines a sustainable business? Was Aduhelm an aberration? And what comes after Omicron? Senior writer Helen Branswell joins us to discuss the latest twists in the pandemic, including rising case counts, next-generation vaccines, and the latest data from pediatric trials. We also dive into the latest news in the life sciences, including Moderna's grand ambitions, Al Sandrock's new job, and the next big FDA debate.
Mar 24, 2022
Episode 201: Doing biotech in Ukraine, drug pricing déjà vu, & Covid surges overseas
How should pharma treat Russia? Why can't Congress pass a drug pricing bill? And what does wastewater portend for the pandemic? First, we discuss the drug industry's response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and STAT reporter Isabella Cueto joins us to explain how the war has affected the quietly vibrant Ukrainian biotech industry. Then, STAT Washington correspondent Nicholas Florko calls in to review Congress' years of failure to pass laws on drug pricing and examine whether bipartisan support can ever result in actual legislation. We also run through the latest news in the life sciences, including Ashish Jha's new job, global Covid-19 surges, and a long-delayed manuscript from Biogen.
Mar 17, 2022
Episode 200: Gilead's growing pains, Covid's origins, & Theranos as prestige TV
Can biotech companies age gracefully? Where did Covid-19 come from? And does Theranos make for good television? We cover all that and more this week. We examine Gilead Sciences' recent struggles and what the company's predicament says about the drug industry. Then, MIT Technology Review reporter Antonio Regalado joins us to discuss his new podcast investigating the origins of Covid-19. We also discuss the latest Theranos trial, playing Elizabeth Holmes on TV, and how we managed to make 200 episodes of this show.
Mar 10, 2022
Episode 199: Biden's plans for Covid pills, the latest vaccine data, & fighting about CRISPR
Is "test to treat" too good to be true? Does it really matter who gets credit for CRISPR? And what's the offramp for Covid-19? We cover all that and more this week. Physician and researcher Kavita Patel joins us to explain why President Biden's plans for Covid-19 — including an ambitious idea to distribute antiviral treatments — might not be so simple. We also discuss some milestone data in the quest to turn CRISPR into medicine and the latest twist in the quest to figure out who invented it.
Mar 03, 2022
Episode 198: Medical racism, new Covid vaccines, & the resilience of Regeneron
How many Covid-19 vaccines does the world really need? What will it take to address inequality in American health care? And should people be nicer to Moderna? First, we discuss the latest news in Covid-19 vaccines, including data from Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline, the future of Novavax, and what comes next for Moderna. Then, STAT’s Usha Lee McFarling joins us to talk about a groundbreaking investigation into racial and ethnic disparities in American medicine — and why almost nothing has changed in the 20 years since it was published.
Feb 24, 2022
Episode 197: Robert Califf's FDA return, the future of CRISPR, & another vaccine delay
Will there be a new ALS drug this year? What business does Wall Street have with CRISPR? And when can kids get Covid-19 vaccines? We cover all that and more this week. First, STAT's Nicholas Florko joins us to preview the trials ahead for Robert Califf as he retakes the reins at the FDA — including a high-profile decision on a new treatment for ALS. Then, CRISPR pioneer Jennifer Doudna and financier Marty Chavez join us to talk about the future of genome editing and the investments they plan to make in it. We also discuss the latest on Eric Lander, the Covid-19 vaccine meeting that wasn't, and the future of Chinese-developed cancer drugs.
Feb 17, 2022
Episode 196: Eric Lander's resignation, FDA's about-face, & Pfizer's lucrative pandemic
Does Big Science have a bullying problem? Why did the FDA change its tune on China? And what's cooler than $100 billion? We cover all that and more this week on “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. We discuss the scandalous end of Eric Lander's tenure as presidential science adviser with STAT Washington correspondent Lev Facher and science writer Megan Molteni. Then we dive into the FDA's about-face on cancer drugs developed in China and what it means for the cost of medicine in the U.S. We also explain how Pfizer's record-setting year somehow disappointed Wall Street and explore whether it's a good idea to end mask mandates.
Feb 10, 2022
Episode 195: Califf's sudden jeopardy, the quest for a PCSK9 pill, & Covid vaccines for kids
Does President Biden care about the FDA? What can aerobics instructors teach us about genetics? And when can kids get Covid-19 vaccines? STAT Washington correspondent Nicholas Florko joins us to chat about why Robert Califf, once a shoo-in to be the next FDA commissioner, is suddenly in serious jeopardy. Then, we examine one of the coolest drug-discovery stories in medicine with Merck’s head of research, Dean Li, who joins us to talk about the company’s efforts to develop an oral cholesterol pill targeting PCSK9.
Feb 03, 2022
Episode 194: Janet Woodcock on Covid antibodies, vaccines for kids, and responding to Omicron
Who gets to be an "expert" on Covid-19? Are Americans entitled to drugs that don't work? And how does the FDA deal with states' rights? First, we discuss the FDA's decision to halt the use of two Covid-19 antibodies that don't work against Omicron — and the surprising backlash that ensued. Then, acting FDA commissioner Janet Woodcock joins us to dig into the agency's move and discuss the steps for regulation of Covid drugs. We also go over the latest news in the life sciences, including some bad news for Gilead Sciences and a rare victory for a small biotech company.
Jan 27, 2022
Episode 193: Jared Holz on Biotech's red tape, plus the latest billionaire science project
With biotech in the dumps, we talk to Oppenheimer analyst Jared Holz about why the world has soured on the sector and what it means for the future of medicine. Then, STAT’s Matthew Herper joins us to explain the latest big idea from biotech's big thinkers: a company called Altos Labs, which has raised $3 billion to do something or other. We also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, with a cameo from Shkreli and an update on Omicron.
Jan 20, 2022
Episode 192: Michael Gilman on the future of RNA drugs, plus #JPM22 in review and more Biogen news
First, STAT health tech correspondent Katie Palmer joins us to recap the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference. Then, we discuss the latest twist in Biogen's quest to expand the use of Aduhelm and what it means for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. Finally, Arrakis Therapeutics CEO Michael Gilman calls in to explain how targeting RNA can treat disease and why the characters in "Dune" don't just shoot each other with laser guns.
Jan 13, 2022
Episode 191: Craig Spencer on the Omicron surge + biotech in 2022, & the Elizabeth Holmes verdict
First, emergency room physician Craig Spencer joins us to talk about how the Omicron variant is impacting New York City and what the coming months have in store. Then, we look ahead to the New Year in biotech with a preview of the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference. We start with a look at the latest news in the life sciences, including Elizabeth Holmes' guilty verdict and the ongoing Aduhelm saga.
Jan 06, 2022
Episode 190: Covid in 2022, J.P. Morgan bows to pressure, & the year in review
We've come to our last episode of the year, and first, STAT’s Helen Branswell joins us to talk about Omicron, boosters, and the past and future of the Covid-19 pandemic. Then, we'll review the year that was in biotech, discuss the suddenly virtual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference, and look forward to 2022.
Dec 16, 2021
Episode 189: Biogen, Biogen, Biogen, with a dash of Omicron
On this week's episode, we kick off the conversation with an update on what researchers are discovering about the Omicron variant of the coronavirus, including new findings from a study involving the Pfizer Covid vaccine. Then, we'll shift the talk to this week's blockbuster STAT story about Biogen and the all the behind-the-scenes turmoil caused by its controversial treatment for Alzheimer's.
Dec 09, 2021
Episode 188: Carlos del Rio on Covid antivirals, an FDA conundrum, & the rise of Omicron
Will the first Covid-19 pill be all that useful? How worrisome is Omicron? And when will it be safe to congregate? First, STAT's Matthew Herper joins us to talk about a tense debate among FDA advisers about molnupiravir, a Merck treatment for Covid-19 whose luster has faded over time. Then, we talk to Emory University’s Carlos del Rio about the potential of Pfizer’s antiviral pill, the future treatment landscape for Covid-19, and how the emerging Omicron variant might change the global pandemic response.
Dec 02, 2021
Episode 187: Biogen’s scientific succession & Michael Osterholm on pandemic Thanksgiving
First, epidemiologist Michael Osterholm of the University of Minnesota joins us to talk about Covid-19 case counts, vaccination rates, and the state of the pandemic as we head into the holidays. Then, we discuss the surprising news that Al Sandrock, Biogen’s long-time chief scientist, is leaving the company after a tumultuous year.
Nov 18, 2021
Episode 186: Rebecca Robbins on Moderna v. NIH, plus psilocybin as a medicine
Rebecca Robbins of the New York Times joins us to discuss the escalating tension between Moderna and the National Institutes of Health over just who invented a Covid-19 vaccine. Then, STAT's Olivia Goldhill calls in to explain Compass Pathways' promising results using psilocybin as a treatment for depression and the future of the nascent field of psychedelic medicines. We also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including pills for Covid-19, the next FDA commissioner, and whether Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla listens to Joe Rogan.
Nov 11, 2021
Episode 185: John Maraganore on his next act, plus Moderna's setback & the drug pricing reform saga
STAT's Rachel Cohrs drops in to talk about the latest updates in drug pricing reform. Then, John Maraganore joins us to talk about his decision to step down as CEO of Alnylam Pharmaceuticals after almost 20 years with the company. We also discuss the latest news in biotech, including the Covid-19 vaccine for kids and Moderna's disappointing earnings call.
Nov 04, 2021
Episode 184: Vaccines for kids, inside Operation Warp Speed, & a big biotech resignation
Can the FDA be too transparent? Who deserves credit for Operation Warp Speed? And when is a CEO worth $3 billion? We cover all that and more this week on “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. STAT's Helen Branswell joins us to discuss the whirlwind of FDA debates around who should get vaccines for Covid-19 and the coming months of pandemic response. Then, Brendan Borrell calls in to talk about his book, "The First Shots," a behind-the-scenes look at Operation Warp Speed and the race to develop those vaccines. We also discuss the surprise announcement that longtime Alynlam Pharmaceuticals CEO John Maraganore is soon to leave the company.
Oct 28, 2021
Episode 183: Greg Zuckerman on the vaccine race, plus Biogen's troubled launch
Wall Street Journal reporter Gregory Zuckerman joins us to share some behind-the-scenes details from race to develop a Covid-19 vaccine, the subject of his new book. We also discuss the latest news in the life sciences, including Biogen’s failure to launch, the plight of a Covid pill, and a headline-grabbing statement from one of biotech’s most famous scientists.
Oct 21, 2021
Episode 182: The FDA star search, more booster debates, & the future of mRNA
STAT Washington correspondent Nicholas Florko joins us to provide an inside look at the eleventh-hour search for a permanent FDA commissioner. We also discuss the latest twist in the debate over Covid-19 vaccine boosters, some upheaval in the world of genome editing, and a little news for parents from one Scott Gottlieb.
Oct 14, 2021
Episode 181: Brent Hodge on filming Shkreli, the next NIH director, and a looming FDA deadline
First, we discuss the scramble to find new leaders for the NIH and FDA, the latest online dustup involving Ginkgo Bioworks, and the growing promise of antiviral treatments for Covid-19. Then, filmmaker Brent Hodge joins us to discuss his documentary "Pharma Bro," which chronicles the trial, conviction, and prolific livestreaming of one Martin Shkreli.
Oct 07, 2021
Episode 180: Health equity 'tourism,' an $11B biopharma acquisition, & a bony Covid protest
First, we welcome STAT reporter Usha Lee McFarling onto the podcast to discuss her investigation into health equity tourism — how white scholars are colonizing research on health disparities. Then, we "chatty Cathy" a blizzard of biotech news from this week, including Merck's $11 billion acquisition of Acceleron Pharma, a theatrical street protest about the Covid vaccine equity dive, a debate about gene therapy's future, and, finally, why Scott Gottlieb is looking up at Elvira.
Sep 30, 2021
Episode 179: Scott Gottlieb on the next pandemic, another Covid winter, & Aduhelm's slow rollout
First, STAT's Helen Branswell joins us to discuss the state of the Covid-19 pandemic as we head into another winter. Then, former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb calls in to discuss his new book on how the U.S. got caught off guard and what the government needs to do before the next pandemic hits. We start with a look at the latest news in the life sciences, including the booster debate, Biogen's trouble selling its controversial Alzheimer's drug, and the awkward pairing of beer and face masks.
Sep 23, 2021
Episode 178: Futuristic prosthetics, a treatment for ALS, & intrigue at the Holmes trial
Can prosthetic limbs feel real? Is the FDA softening under pressure? And are Rice Krispies Treats admissible in court? STAT's Gideon Gil joins us to share the remarkable story of an amputation surgery that makes a phantom limbs feel like the real thing. Then we discuss the FDA's surprising reversal on a new treatment for ALS and whether it signals a sea change within the agency. We start with a look at the latest news in the life sciences, including the debate over Covid-19 vaccine boosters, the future of in-person conferences, and a mysterious sweet-toothed observer at Elizabeth Holmes's fraud trial.
Sep 16, 2021
Episode 177: Bijan Salehizadeh on Covid tests, plus Verily's moment of truth
First, STAT's Erin Brodwin joins us to talk about Verily, Google's big-idea life sciences company that is now under pressure to produce some actual products. Then, health care investor Bijan Salehizadeh calls in to discuss the dearth of rapid Covid-19 tests in the U.S. and how industry, regulators, and lawmakers share the blame. We also take a look at the latest news in biotech, including Biogen's troubled launch of Aduhelm, Moderna's long-term scientific ambitions, and a big day for the Waksal brothers.
Sep 09, 2021
Episode 176: Elizabeth Holmes on trial, FDA in disarray, & the quest for Covid antivirals
Former Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes is finally headed to trial, and we discuss the case and why it might not be an open-and-shut conviction for prosecutors. Then, STAT Washington correspondent Nicholas Florko joins us to explain the latest upheaval at the FDA, which arrives just as the agency faces mounting pressure to speed up the review of Covid-19 vaccines. We also discuss the race to develop antivirals for SARS-CoV-2 and why the eyelash-growth business is booming.
Sep 02, 2021
Episode 175: Dorit Reiss on vaccine mandates, plus biotech's messy summer
First, law professor Dorit Reiss joins us to discuss what the first FDA approval of a Covid-19 vaccine means for vaccination mandates and how this whole issue relates to jaywalking. Then we discuss biotech's messy summer, which has brought allegations of data manipulation, sloppy clinical development, and questionable transparency. We also run through the latest news in the life sciences, including the evolving booster shot debate and a Netflix film about the perils of pharmaceutical greed.
Aug 26, 2021
Episode 174: Biotech's trust issues, overwhelmed health workers, & the nuances of insider trading
First, we discuss a sudden spike of FDA rejections, which has resurfaced a time-honored frustration: You can’t always trust biotech companies to be honest about their conversations with the agency. Then, STAT's Lev Facher joins us to share his reporting from Louisiana, where a surge of Covid-19 deaths among the unvaccinated is having devastating effects on health workers. Before that, we talk about a curious case of alleged insider trading, medical conferences in the time of Delta, and the global vaccine push.
Aug 19, 2021
Episode 173: Biden's drug pricing plan, Wall Street's Alzheimer's fixation, & daily 5 a.m. alarms
First, STAT Washington correspondent Nicholas Florko joins us to explain President Biden's proposal to lower drug prices, how it might affect the 2022 election, and why there's still no nominee for FDA commissioner. Then, Shraddha Chakradhar calls in to look back on her time running STAT’s flagship newsletter, Morning Rounds. We also discuss the rise of Covid-19 mandates, Canada's biotech ambitions, and Wall Street's exuberance over new treatments for Alzheimer's disease.
Aug 12, 2021
Episode 172: The mRNA gold rush, Delta's alarming rise, & the next treatment for Alzheimer's
First, we dive into the potential of mRNA, a technology that proved itself with Covid-19 vaccines and is now seeding a pharmaceutical gold rush. Then, STAT's Helen Branswell joins us to discuss the state of the pandemic, the implications of the Delta variant, and the debate around booster shots. We also dissect the week's news in biotech, included Amgen's tax problems, a meltdown in synthetic biology, and the latest on Aduhelm.
Aug 05, 2021
Episode 171: The quest for a Covid pill, a microbiome gut-check, & CRISPR on the big screen
First, we discuss the CDC's about-face on mask wearing, the debate over vaccine booster shots, and the slow but steady race to develop pills for Covid-19. Then, STAT's Kate Sheridan joins us to discuss a setback in the field of microbiomics and the mounting skepticism over whether tinkering with gut bacteria can eventually treat a host of diseases. We also break down the latest fallout from the FDA's approval of Aduhelm, the sorry state of biotech stocks, and an in-development feature film about CRISPR.
Jul 29, 2021
Episode 170: Céline Gounder on breakthrough infections, plus the power of lobbying
First, Céline Gounder of NYU’s Grossman School of Medicine joins us to discuss the issue of breakthrough coronavirus infections and whether the U.S. was too quick to unmask. Then, STAT's Rachel Cohrs calls in to share the curious case of the moderate Democrat who made thousands of dollars in pharma donations within two days of attacking a drug pricing bill. We also discuss Biogen's latest defense of Aduhelm, the debate over Johnson & Johnson's Covid-19 vaccine, and the latest movie casting Big Pharma as a villain.
Jul 22, 2021
Episode 169: Dan Diamond on covering Biden, plus the FDA's future, & the latest Aduhelm twist
First, we'll talk about the future of the FDA, whose acting commissioner will have to step down in November unless she’s given the permanent job. Next, Washington Post reporter Dan Diamond joins us to discuss the politics of the vaccine rollout and how covering this administration differs from writing about the last one. Plus we break down the latest news on Covid-19 and the continued Aduhelm fallout.
Jul 15, 2021
Episode 168: Aduhelm's latest twist, & how Covid variants are shaping the summer
First, we discuss the latest twists following the FDA's widely condemned decision to approve Aduhelm, Biogen's treatment for Alzheimer's disease. Then, our STAT colleague Helen Branswell joins us to talk about whether viral variants are going to stymie the U.S.'s summer reopening. Finally, STAT's Mario Aguilar calls in to break down the record-setting sums going into digital health companies in 2021.
Jul 08, 2021
Episode 167: George Yancopoulos on biotech in 2021, plus a CRISPR milestone, Biogen's FDA saga,
First we talk to George Yancopoulos, head scientist at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, about the future of CRISPR genome editing and the latest idea for treating obesity. Then, we discuss STAT's reporting on the cozy relationship between Biogen and the FDA ahead of Aduhelm's approval and what the ensuing fallout might mean. Before all that, we chat about the latest news in biotech, including vaccine boosters and a decadelong debacle.
Jul 01, 2021
Episode 166: FDA inner workings, GSK's foggy future, & the alarming rise in colorectal cancer
First, we sift through the week's news, with a major update from Eli Lilly in Alzheimer's disease and new details on the inner workings of the FDA. Then, STAT's Matthew Herper joins us to discuss how GlaxoSmithKline ended up in a self-preservation struggle. Finally, STAT's Nicholas St. Fleur calls in to talk about the alarming rise of colorectal cancer deaths among young men and his decision to get on an on-camera colonoscopy for a reporting project.
Jun 24, 2021
Episode 165: Paul Offit on the Covid vaccine booster debate, & Robyn Karnauskas' call of the decade
First, we sift through the week's news, with some disappointing Covid-19 vaccine data, a pair of setbacks for biotech, and the Wall Street debut of 23andMe. Then, vaccinologist Paul Offit joins us to explain the scientific debate over whether we'll need booster vaccine doses to stay protected from SARS-CoV-2. Finally, Truist Securities analyst Robyn Karnauskas calls in to talk about her bold 2020 prediction that Biogen's controversial treatment for Alzheimer's disease would eventually win FDA approval.
Jun 17, 2021
Episode 164: Every angle on the FDA's polarizing approval of Biogen's Alzheimer's drug
We're devoting this entire episode to the FDA's polarizing decision to approve Aduhelm, a controversial Biogen treatment for Alzheimer's disease. First, we'll break down what happened and why it's such a big deal, and then we'll talk about the broader implications for science, medicine, and the drug industry as a whole. Finally, we'll zoom out explore how the FDA got to this moment in a conversation with Yale University professor and global health activist Gregg Gonsalves.
Jun 10, 2021
Episode 163: Marilynn Marchione on covering the CRISPR babies scandal
First, we discuss why it's so hard to predict FDA decisions, and why the latest big deal in biotech left investors cold. Then, STAT Washington correspondent Nicholas Florko joins us for a dive into the thousands of emails from Anthony Fauci made public this week, complete with a top-five countdown of messages both impactful and absurd. Finally, longtime Associated Press medical reporter Marilynn Marchione retired last week, and she calls in to talk about the biggest stories of her career.
Jun 03, 2021
Episode 162: Scott Gottlieb on Covid and grilling, plus how Zolgensma has changed SMA
STAT's Andrew Joseph joins us to talk about the two-year anniversary of the approval of gene therapy Zolgensma and the effect it has had on families dealing with the rare disease spinal muscular atrophy. Then, former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb calls in with tips on Memorial Day grilling, notes on a recent Twitter spat, and thoughts on the origins of SARS-CoV-2.
May 27, 2021
Episode 161: Biotech meme stocks, the lessons of Spanish Flu, & becoming a pandemic celebrity
First, we discuss Ginkgo Bioworks, the multibillion-dollar biotech company with grand ambitions, a famous ticker symbol, and an affinity for memes. Then, STAT’s Helen Branswell joins us to discuss a topic on everyone’s mind: How will the Covid-19 pandemic end? Finally, we’ll talk about the modern phenomenon of the pandemic celebrity and the case of Ashish Jha, TV’s ever-present Covid-19 expert.
May 20, 2021
Episode 160: Global Covid-19 failures, a sluggish CDC, and a boisterous STAT Health Tech Summit
Can we prevent the next Covid-19? Has the CDC become too cautious? And how many sensors should be worn to bed? First, our colleague Helen Branswell joins us to discuss where the world went wrong with Covid-19 and how to prepare for the next pandemic. Next, STAT D.C. correspondent Nicholas Florko calls in to talk about the public health experts who believe the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been too sluggish and conservative in recent months. Finally, our colleague Nick St. Fleur joins to recap this week’s STAT Health Tech Summit, which featured some boisterous CEOs, ambitious startups, and promising technologies.
May 13, 2021
Episode 159: Thomas Bollyky on patent waivers, plus vaccine riches, & a gene therapy for aging
First, Moderna and Pfizer are poised to make billions of dollars from their Covid-19 vaccines this year, and we discuss what that massive infusion of cash portends for both companies. Next, Thomas Bollyky of the Council on Foreign Relations joins us to explain what the U.S.'s support for waiving Covid-19 vaccine patents means — and doesn’t mean — for the global vaccination effort. Finally, STAT’s Megan Molteni calls in to share the story of a little-known biotech company recruiting patients to Mexico with the promise of an anti-aging gene therapy in an unregulated clinical trial.
May 06, 2021
Episode 158: Angela Rasmussen on Russia's vaccine controversy, plus Biden's drug pricing punt
First, STAT Washington correspondent Rachel Cohrs joins us to explain why President Biden's endorsement for drug pricing reform rang hollow to many advocates. Next, virologist Angela Rasmussen calls in to discuss the controversy around a Russian-produced vaccine for Covid-19. Finally, STAT's Kate Sheridan joins us to talk about how a shortage of cheap, little-discussed plastic tools is hobbling scientific labs around the world.
Apr 29, 2021
Episode 157: Mercedes Carnethon on outdoor masking, FDA in limbo, & gene therapy's uncertain upside
First, Northwestern University epidemiologist Mercedes Carnethon joins us to weigh on the nation's latest Covid-19 debate: Is it OK to go maskless outdoors? Then, STAT Washington correspondent Nicholas Florko calls in to talk about why the Biden administration is waiting so long to nominate an FDA commissioner and how that indecision could have real consequences. Later, we discuss the scientific promise of novel treatments for sickle cell disease — and the industry's growing concern that they might not be as lucrative as once thought. And, naturally, we recap the latest news in the Covid-19 vaccine rollout.
Apr 22, 2021
Episode 156: J&J's vaccine pause, talking about remote risks, & why no new drugs for Covid-19
How do you describe a one-in-a-million risk? What's heparin-induced thrombocytopenia? And why's it so hard to find drugs for Covid-19? We cover all that and more this week on “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. First, Science Magazine reporter Kai Kupferschmidt joins us to discuss the U.S. decision to press pause on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and what researchers have learned about rare cases of dangerous clotting. Then, biotech analyst Josh Schimmer joins us to talk about why the drug industry has had such a hard time coming up with treatments for Covid-19 and offer some tips that might help in the next pandemic.
Apr 15, 2021
Episode 155: AstraZeneca's vaccine woes, compassionate use, & giving out Covid vaccines
What's next for AstraZeneca? Are there any right answers when it comes to compassionate use? And how does it feel to give someone a Covid-19 vaccine? We cover all that and more this week on “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. First, we discuss the latest in a long series of issues for AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine and the implications for the global pandemic response. Next, we dive into the dilemma over compassionate use, talking to Biogen's former PR chief about the struggle over whether — and how — desperate patients should be able to access experimental medicines. Finally, we interview a registered nurse in Boston about what it's like to bring joy, relief, and reassurance to thousands of people by injecting them with Covid-19 vaccines.
Apr 08, 2021
Episode 154: Eleanor Fox on Illumina’s FTC headache, plus Talkspace’s experiment
First, STAT’s Mario Aguilar joins us to discuss a fascinating experiment in Nevada, where one city is giving its residents free access to a therapy app — and getting a mixed reception. Then, New York University antitrust expert Eleanor Fox calls in to discuss the case of Illumina, the genome sequencing giant whose grand plans keeping running afoul of the Federal Trade Commission. Finally, we embark on a lightning round, covering the latest Covid-19 vaccine news, biotech’s biggest events over the next three months, and the death of a pioneering Gilead Sciences executive.
Apr 01, 2021
Episode 153: AstraZeneca and the very good, then quite bad, then deeply confusing week
We're devoting this week's episode to the week of whiplash news about AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine, subject of a baffling international incident with consequences still unfolding. First, we explain the series of late-night announcements that made global headlines. Then, our STAT colleague Helen Branswell joins us to discuss the implications for AstraZeneca, vaccine confidence, and the global effort to get doses in arms. Finally, STAT's Matthew Herper calls in to talk about Pascal Soriot, the hard-charging AstraZeneca CEO whose previously feted boldness might have backfired when it came to Covid-19.
Mar 25, 2021
Episode 152: Alison Buttenheim on Europe's vaccine scare, Lilly's Alzheimer's data, & a PR plea
First we unpack the crisis of confidence facing AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine in Europe with Alison Buttenheim, a University Pennsylvania professor who studies vaccine acceptance. Then, we explain the latest data on an Alzheimer's disease treatment from Eli Lilly and why it has polarized experts in the field. Finally, we make a modest proposal to the biotech industry: Give honesty a chance.
Mar 18, 2021
Episode 151: Natasha Loder on Covid vaccines, the demise of Watson Health, and a 'synbio' explainer
We're joined by Natasha Loder, the health policy editor at The Economist — and a London resident — to get her home-country perspective on the U.K.'s Covid vaccine development efforts. Next, we'll talk with STAT national technology correspondent Casey Ross about his yearslong investigation into the demise of Watson Health, IBM's AI health care initiative. Finally, STAT's Meghana Keshavan joins us for a primer into synthetic biology, including its role in making the mRNA-based Covid vaccines.
Mar 11, 2021
Episode 150: Ashish Jha on Covid-19 optimism, plus pharma cooperation, & the next pandemic phase
We discuss Merck's decision to help Johnson & Johnson manufacture vaccine doses and whether it'll be a turning point for the drug industry or a relic of Covid-19 history. Then, as we near the one-year anniversary of the pandemic, STAT's Andrew Joseph joins us to explain what experts think is in store in the months and years to come. Finally, Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health, joins us to explain why he's optimistic about summer 2021.
Mar 04, 2021
Episode 149: Nancy Goodman on Covid vaccines for kids, & Greg Zuckerman on Novavax's remarkable rise
First, pediatric cancer advocate Nancy Goodman joins us to discuss why she believes Covid-19 vaccine trials need to be sped up for teens and children. Then, Wall Street Journal reporter Greg Zuckerman calls in to explain the unlikely story behind Novavax, a former biotech penny stock now on the verge of making history. Finally, we embark on a lightning round, featuring quick takes on the confirmation process for a new health secretary and the future of therapeutic stool.
Feb 25, 2021
Episode 148: Akshay Sharma on gene therapy's setback, biotech's brashest VCs, & the FDA's future
We discuss all that and more this week on “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. First, we break down a significant setback for Bluebird Bio’s gene therapy program with some help from Akshay Sharma, a bone marrow transplant expert at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Then, STAT's Kate Sheridan joins us to discuss her deep dive into Flagship Pioneering, the superlatively successful and frequently grandiose venture firm behind Moderna. Finally, we dig into what the future might hold for a post-Trump FDA, which remains without a permanent commissioner.
Feb 18, 2021
Episode 147: David Fajgenbaum on Covid-19 drugs, the state of the pandemic, & meme biotech stocks
When will we have enough vaccine doses? How many effective Covid-19 drugs are just waiting to be found? And what do Redditors think about biotech? We discuss all that and more this week on “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. First, we check in with our colleague Helen Branswell for her view on the current state of the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing vaccine rollout. Then, we're joined by David Fajgenbaum, a physician and scientist at the University of Pennsylvania, to talk about his work to identify and develop treatments for people with Covid-19. Lastly, we embark on a lightning round, covering Gilead Sciences' latest setback, a schism in Alzheimer's disease research, and a preview of the newest podcast from STAT.
Feb 11, 2021
Episode 146: Paul Offit on vaccine data, 23andMe is going public, & Merck's CEO is retiring
We discuss all that and more this week on “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. First, we recap a busy week of news, featuring 23andMe's move to go public through a blank-check company, Merck CEO Ken Frazier's retirement after three decades at the drug maker, and how the future of Biogen’s Alzheimer’s disease drug got a little more complicated. Then, Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Education Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, joins us to weigh in on the bounty of recent Covid-19 vaccine data from Johnson & Johnson, Novavax, and AstraZeneca. Finally, STAT's Casey Ross calls in to discuss his investigation into the FDA's chaotic approach to approving medical products that use artificial intelligence.
Feb 04, 2021
Episode 145: Kevin Davies on the CRISPR boom, & Megan Ranney on scientific misinformation
First, we discuss the implications of Johnson & Johnson’s any-day-now data on a one-shot vaccine for Covid-19. Then, Kevin Davies, executive editor of the CRISPR Journal, joins us to talk about the strange boom in genome editing stocks and the future of the revolutionary technology. Finally, we talk to Megan Ranney, an emergency room physician and Brown University professor, about the challenges of Covid-19 science communication in a post-Trump world.
Jan 28, 2021
Episode 144: Remembering STAT's Sharon Begley
We're spending this entire episode remembering Sharon Begley, our revered and beloved colleague who died last week from complications of lung cancer. First, STAT's Eric Boodman joins us to discuss Sharon's path-breaking career and what he learned from reporting out her obituary. Then, a trio of STAT editors call in to talk about what it was like to work with Sharon, and we hear from number of her colleagues about what made her a singular writer, mentor, officemate, and friend.
Jan 22, 2021
Episode 143: #JPM21: Déjà vu in Alzheimer's research, and OWS's legacy
We're devoting this episode to the news coming out of the just-concluded J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference, the drug industry's largest annual meeting. First, we'll dissect Eli Lilly's surprising data on a new Alzheimer's disease treatment and dig into its implications for the field. Then, we discuss whether there's a bubble inflating in the genome editing world, debate who will run the FDA under a President Biden, and consider the legacy of Moncef Slaoui, the outgoing leader of Operation Warp Speed.
Jan 14, 2021
Episode 142: Bob Nelsen on the pandemic's next phase, plus Biden's biopharma plans & a CES preview
On this year's first episode, STAT Washington correspondent Lev Facher joins us to break down the implications of a Democrat-controlled Senate. Then, our colleague Erin Brodwin calls in to talk about CES, the massive tech conference taking place next week. Finally, we chat with Bob Nelsen, a biotech venture capitalist and one of the few people who saw the coming pandemic with clarity months before everyone else, about what's ahead in 2021.
Jan 07, 2021
Episode 141: Moderna's vaccine milestone, Warp Speed's hurdles, and biotech in 2021
It's the final episode of 2020. We dig into the second vaccine that's been recommended by a panel of FDA advisors, and look ahead to see what's in store for biotech in 2021.
Dec 18, 2020
Episode 140: Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine — the debate, details, and distribution
Are Covid-19 vaccines safe for teens? Is the U.S. taking too long to authorize one? And how do you prepare for an FDA grilling?
Dec 11, 2020
Episode 139: Angela Rasmussen on AstraZeneca's confusing data, & Adam Koppel on biotech in 2021
Can too much Covid-19 vaccine be a bad thing? Is biotech in a bubble? And how do you make blind mice see again?
Dec 03, 2020
Episode 138: The latest Covid-19 vaccine, Biden's pandemic plans, and Bill Gates unfiltered
How do we measure whether Covid-19 vaccines work? What does Joe Biden think of the drug industry? And does Anthony Fauci think about retirement?
Nov 19, 2020
Episode 137: Natalie Dean on Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine, plus the FDA's Alzheimer's quandary
How well does Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine work? What's the difference between efficacy and effectiveness? And should the FDA approve Biogen's Alzheimer's drug?
Nov 12, 2020
Bracing for a pandemic winter, Biogen's fortune at the FDA, and remembering a remarkable 12-year-old
How bad will this winter be? Is everything coming up Biogen? And who's going to be president on Jan. 20? We discuss all that and more on this week's episode of “The Readout LOUD,” STAT's biotech podcast. First, STAT's Helen Branswell joins us to discuss what the winter has in store for the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Then, we discuss the latest surprising twist in Biogen’s quest to win FDA approval for a polarizing treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. Finally, STAT reporter Casey Ross joins to talk about the recent death and legacy of Bertrand Might, a 12-year boy born with a rare genetic disease.
Nov 05, 2020
Episode 135: Pfizer's Covid-19 mystery, Ashish Jha on pandemic response, & STAT turns 5
When are we getting Covid-19 vaccine data? Will concerts ever be safe again? And what's a "Bionomy"?
Oct 29, 2020
Episode 134: Erik Gordon on SPACs, plus Covid-19 vaccines, & Biogen's case in Alzheimer's
Who's voice rings loudest at the FDA? Is it wise to give hedge funds a blank check? And how will the Biogen saga end?
Oct 22, 2020
Episode 133: A week of pauses, pharma’s statehouse spending, & how HBCUs approach Covid-19 trials
Is your local lawmaker flush with pharma cash? How does racism in medicine loom over Covid-19 studies? And who decides when a clinical trial goes on pause?
Oct 15, 2020
Episode 132: How Trump's case of Covid-19 affects biotech, medicine, and the FDA with George Scangos
Why is the president making drug ads? Are antibodies the new vaccines? And is it ethical for doctors to talk about President Trump's health?
Oct 08, 2020
Episode 131: Saad Omer on Covid-19 vaccine trials, & Ethan Weiss on intermittent fasting
Can an itchy arm ruin a clinical trial? Does intermittent fasting work? And is pharma more trustworthy than the CDC?
Oct 01, 2020
Episode 130: A road map for Covid-19, the gold rush in health tech, & D.C.'s pandemic unrest
Is superspreading an Olympic event? Will Covid-19 forever change health tech? And what are the limits of Anthony Fauci's patience?
Sep 24, 2020
Episode 129: Heidi Tworek on pandemic PR, plus the CDC's credibility crisis & a lightning round
How should governments talk about Covid-19? Can the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention rebuild public trust? And when is a steak worth $21 billion?
Sep 17, 2020
Episode 128: AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine, coronavirus politics, & STAT’s Health Tech Summit
Is AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine in jeopardy? Why can’t politicians and scientists in Washington get along? Did you miss STAT’s first-ever Health Tech Summit?
Sep 10, 2020
Episode 127: Eric Topol on Stephen Hahn, plus Covid-19 vaccine timelines, & the 2000th First Opinion
Should the FDA commissioner resign? How fast can vaccine trials move? And what do Chelsea Clinton and Chuck Grassley have in common?
Sep 03, 2020
Episode 126: The FDA's chaotic week, Trump's effect on science, and Musk's big reveal
Can the Food and Drug Administration survive Trump? Are drug reviewers in the deep state? And what can Elon Musk teach us about the nature of reality?
Aug 27, 2020
Episode 125: Shocking FDA rejections, a longevity science setback & Derek Lowe on Covid-19 vaccines
Did the FDA suddenly get stringent about new drugs? Is longevity research over-hyped? And what can recovered patients teach us about Covid-19 vaccines?
Aug 20, 2020
Episode 124: Pharma's lobbying dollars, Alnylam's future, and diversity in Covid-19 studies
Is pharma scared of Kamala Harris? Are there second acts in biotech? And why don't Covid-19 trials look more diverse?
Aug 13, 2020
Episode 123: Steven Salzberg's Twitter debate, a health tech mega-deal & Covid-19 vaccine prices
Does the future of health tech look like Facebook? Can we cut corners with Covid-19 vaccines? And are journalists slowing down Operation Warp Speed?
Aug 06, 2020
Episode 122: Gary Washburn on the NBA bubble, plus a DIY coronavirus vaccine, & behind VC numbers
How much should a Covid-19 vaccine cost? What can basketball teach us about pandemic safety? And just how lucrative is venture capital?
Jul 30, 2020
Episode 121: Kate Bingham on vaccine data, Meg Tirrell on covering Covid-19, & a DNA detective story
How soon will we get a Covid-19 vaccine? Why is biotech moving airline stocks? And what can we learn from 1860s science?
Jul 23, 2020
Episode 120: Moderna's vaccine data, saving the U.S. pandemic response & systemic racism in medicine
What do we want from a coronavirus vaccine? Can the U.S.’s Covid-19 response be saved? And how can the field of medicine address structural racism?
Jul 16, 2020
Episode 119: Trump's FDA pressure, a microcosm of the pandemic, and squabbling over a vaccine
Who will stand up to the White House? How can hospitals protect workers from Covid-19? And what ever happened with Biogen?
Jul 09, 2020
Episode 118: Remdesivir’s controversial cost, early vaccine promise, and AI at the end of life
What’s a fair price for remdesivir? How do we know whether vaccines work? And does AI have a place in end-of-life care?
Jul 02, 2020
Episode 117: Covid-19’s U.S. surge, GSK’s mystery whistleblower, and cancer care under coronavirus
Is this a second wave or a rising tide? Who’s the real GlaxoSmithKline whistleblower? And what happens to cancer care in a pandemic?
Jun 25, 2020
Episode 116: Ezekiel Emanuel on vaccine politics & Tshaka Cunningham on diversifying genetic testing
Can a vaccine be an October surprise? Are journal publishers running a racket? And why is genetics so white?
Jun 18, 2020
Episode 115: The Chan-Zuck uprising, a virtual BIO, and the struggle to treat Covid-19
Can a virtual conference feel real? Do scientists have a say in their benefactors' business? And what does it take to get remdesivir in the U.S.?
Jun 11, 2020
Episode 114: The killing of George Floyd, the drug industry's response, and what comes next
The killing of George Floyd at the hands of a white Minneapolis police officer has brutally underlined the systemic racism that informs policing, housing, education, and health care in the U.S. This podcast covers the world of biotech, which, like every facet of our society, is affected by racism and inequality. So, first, we talk about how the drug industry has responded to Floyd’s killing and what that response means. Then, we're joined for a conversation with longtime biotech executive Tony Coles, who is also a founding member of the Black Economic Alliance, a group of business leaders who raise money for candidates and causes. We talk about why Floyd's killing sparked global action, the relative value of public statements, and what business leaders can do to combat racism.
Jun 04, 2020
Episode 113: Life after a coronavirus vaccine, virtual ASCO, and remembering Larry Kramer
What happens after we get a coronavirus vaccine? Can virtual medical meetings replace the real thing? And wasn’t Amazon supposed to disrupt health care?
May 28, 2020
Episode 112: Moderna's scant coronavirus data and the plight of the day trader
When is a press release worth $5 billion? Can biotech stocks replace sports? And how will we know if a coronavirus vaccine actually works?
May 21, 2020
Episode 111: Covid-19 in the White House, a Parkinson’s experiment & public health lessons from porn
What can the adult film industry teach us about fighting coronavirus? Does the FDA approve Zoom backgrounds? And is it ethical to fund a study of yourself?
May 14, 2020
Episode 110: Pandemic projections, Gilead's pricing dilemma & fighting Covid-19 in New York
What if the curve just stays flat? How much should a Covid-19 drug cost? And what's it like on the ground in the epicenter of the novel coronavirus?
May 07, 2020
Episode 109: Scott Gottlieb on Covid-19 treatments, reopening America, and going on TV every day
Just how well does Gilead Sciences' Covid-19 drug work? Is politics getting in the way of public health? And who gets the eventual coronavirus vaccine first?
Apr 30, 2020
Episode 108: A vaccine official is ousted, how to use ventilators, & the fate of the JPM conference
Why was the infectious disease community in denial about the unfolding pandemic? When can we expect a vaccine? And are ventilators being overused?
Apr 23, 2020
Episode 107: Covid-19 disrupts D.C., how not to be boring on Zoom, and the trial of Elizabeth Holmes
What's the proper distance to stand from Sen. Mitch McConnell? How many PowerPoint charts is too many? And when will Theranos get its day in court?
Apr 16, 2020
Episode 106: Privacy in a pandemic, biopharma's big opportunity, and Shkreli's plea for a break
Can the drug industry win over Americans? Will the pandemic put an end to privacy? And could Martin Shkreli save the world?
Apr 09, 2020
Episode 105: Pandemic exit strategies, how the outbreak affects patients, and Ken Burns takes on DNA
When will things go back to normal? What if a pandemic strikes when you're already sick? And what does Ken Burns know about genomics?
Apr 02, 2020
Episode 104: Fauci's star turn, the latest on coronavirus, and an under-the-radar Alzheimer's drug
When can we stop distancing? Does the "deep state" meet over Zoom? And could the amyloid hypothesis come through at last?
Mar 26, 2020
Episode 103: Trump's coronavirus pivot, life inside the ICU & drug development in a pandemic
Why did the U.S. change its tune on coronavirus? What's it like to be an ICU nurse right now? And when are we getting a vaccine?
Mar 19, 2020
Episode 102: Voices from the coronavirus pandemic, in Italy, New York, and the high seas
How long will this pandemic persist? Are U.S. hospitals going to be overwhelmed? And what’s it like to be quarantined on a cruise ship?
Mar 12, 2020
Episode 101: Pharma’s response to coronavirus, Google's appetite for health data, & biotech in China
Does “The Art of the Deal” cover vaccines? Is patient privacy a relic of the past? And how big can biotech get in China?
Mar 05, 2020
Episode 100: Wall Street's coronavirus freakout, clinical trial difficulties, and a look back
Is the market overreacting to the coronavirus? Why do so many clinical trials go unfilled? And how do you pronounce "Martin Shkreli"?
Feb 27, 2020
Episode 99: Genetic medicine w/ Ethan Weiss, drug industry infighting, & a microbiome review
Can biopharma police itself? Who decides whether something's a disease or a difference? And will fecal matter ever become a drug?
Feb 20, 2020
Episode 98: Les Funtleyder on biotech investing; the Zolgensma lottery & billionaire philanthropy
What's the right way to give drugs away? Is $3 billion even a lot of money? And when is biotech hype justified?
Feb 13, 2020
Episode 97: Fake outbreak news, treating coronavirus, and biotech's Mount Rushmore
Is peer review underrated? Can biotech stop an outbreak? And would you mind giving us a call? We're coming up on the 100th episode of this podcast, and we're using the occasion to actualize our long-held dream of running a call-in show. Dial us at 617-517-6130 and leave a message with any question you'd like us to answer on the podcast, and you may just hear it on air in the coming weeks.
Feb 06, 2020
Episode 96: A chemist breaks bad, the latest on the coronavirus, and pharma’s slow Bern
Is it wise to lie to the feds? Is pharma taking Sen. Bernie Sanders seriously? And what constitutes a "public health emergency of international concern?"
Jan 30, 2020
Episode 95: The latest on the China virus, Sarepta's ongoing FDA saga, and biotech at Davos
Are we dealing with a SARS redux? Has the FDA lost its teeth? And what do billionaires talk to each other about?
Jan 23, 2020
Episode 94: EQRx's Alexis Borisy, Stephen Buck on his website for cancer patients, and a JPM recap
Why weren't there any big deals announced this week? What does the word "equivalar" mean? And why is information about prognosis so hard to find?
Jan 16, 2020
Episode 93: Josiah Zayner on getting canceled, good news in cancer, an Ebola vaccine saga
Does pharma deserve more credit? Will history forgive He Jiankui? And how does a laboratory eureka become a lifesaving vaccine?
Jan 09, 2020
Episode 92: The decade in breakthroughs, the year in bad CEOs, and the viruses that cure disease
Which drug defined the decade? Who's the worst CEO in biopharma? And how does gene therapy actually work?
Dec 19, 2019
Episode 91: CAR-T's future, an alarming cancer trend & Chris Garabedian on Sarepta's FDA legacy
Has CAR-T lost its luster? Why is colorectal cancer on the rise? And did the FDA forever change in 2016?
Dec 12, 2019
Episode 90: Biogen's big reveal, hot takes on Alzheimer's, & the science of one-eyed sheep
How do you know if a "positive" study is positive? And how did one-eyed sheep lead to a drug for certain cancers?
Dec 05, 2019
Episode 89: Warren's awkward home front, a dwarfism drug, and the sound of STAT Summit
Can Sen. Elizabeth Warren ever go home again? Is it ethical to make little people taller? And when will AI come up with a new drug?
Nov 22, 2019
Episode 88: Dr. David Sable on an alarming genetic test & Jorge Conde on the perils of bio-Twitter
Do you trust Google with your health data? Is "Gattaca" an outdated reference? And what's it like to get dunked on?
Nov 14, 2019
Episode 87: Derek Lowe on China's new Alzheimer's drug, blockbuster fish oil, & STAT's birthday
Why hope for China's new Alzheimer's drug turned into skepticism ? Is three a crowd in CAR-T? And what's a Bionomy?
Nov 07, 2019
Episode 86: Drugs that don't work, wearables in the desert, & excess 'innovation'
When should a drug be pulled from shelves? How do you pronounce "HLTH?" And how does Ann Coulter decide what to tweet?
Oct 31, 2019
Episode 85: Every angle on Biogen's shocking Alzheimer's news
What exactly is Biogen doing? When is a press release worth $12 billion? And what should patients make of whiplashing news? We're devoting this entire episode to Biogen's stunning announcement that aducanumab, its once-discarded treatment for Alzheimer's disease, is getting a second life.
Oct 24, 2019
Episode 84: CRISPR with Netflix filmmakers, Pharma's future in China & where VC dollars come from
Should drug companies be free-speech advocates? Is your retirement dependent on CRISPR? And how useful is a glow-in-the-dark dog?
Oct 17, 2019
Episode 83: How biotech VC works w/ health care journalist Maggie Fox, Vioxx and synthetic biology
STAT's Matthew Herper joins us to dig into the history of the infamous pain drug Vioxx and a new effort to bring it back as a rare disease treatment. Then, we discuss how the synthetic biology industry is growing up and getting corporate. Finally, health care journalist Maggie Fox dials in to explain her deep dive on venture capital in biotech.
Oct 10, 2019
Episode 82: Drug shortages with Dr. Ben Davies, congressional paralysis & biotech's foul mood
Does impeachment have a pharma angle? Who's to blame for drug shortages? And why is Wall Street down on biotech?
Oct 03, 2019
Episode 81: Vaping upheaval, DNA test dynamics, & the future of genome editing
What do we talk about when we talk about "vape"? Are there limits to business of DNA testing? And how hard is it to get yourself CRISPR'd? STAT's Megan Thielking joins the gang to break down a major week of news in the world of vaping and STAT's Sharon Begley relates the story of a desperate patient seeking off-the-books genome editing and its implications for the future of medical research.
Sep 26, 2019
Episode 80: Unicorn growth spurts, Amgen's future, & mice on Twitter
Who puts horns on unicorns? How do graying drug companies find green ideas? And what would mice tweet?
Sep 19, 2019
Episode 79: Pelosi's drug pricing plan, Moderna's mRNA drug factories, and a DIY disease cure
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s drug pricing plan is aggressive, but is it viable? Can Moderna turn cells into tiny drug-making factories? What’s it like to cure your own rare disease?
Sep 12, 2019
Episode 78: Pharma existentialism, mainstreaming cyborgs, & FDA palace intrigue
What separates good drug companies from mediocre ones? Have biohackers sold out? And who's going to run the FDA?
Sep 05, 2019
Episode 77: Purdue, J&J, and a week of big opioid crisis news
What does Dr. Richard Sackler sound like? When is $500 million a small amount of money? And what will come of the drug companies at the heart of the opioid crisis?
Aug 29, 2019
Episode 76: Sarepta keeps a secret, an online army mobilizes, & China embraces biotech
How should you talk to friends about rejection? Can Facebook actually improve the lives of children? And how's biotech doing in China?
Aug 22, 2019
Episode 75: The serious side of spit kits, how BiTEs leave a mark, & Sarepta's sluggish study
Is anything too weighty to be explained over the internet? Can a new spin on old technology outfox CAR-T? And does that controversial drug even work?
Aug 15, 2019
Episode 74: Novartis and the no good, very bad week
Why did Novartis (NVS) keep its scandal to itself? Who knew what and when? And is there such thing as too much Peloton time?
Aug 08, 2019
Episode 73: Canadian pills, corporate jets, & racists with spit kits
Will Canada run out of drugs? Should you ever read your partner's diary? And what does Pepe the Frog know about genomics?
Aug 01, 2019
Episode 72: Vertex's regime change, the return of Ebola, & the rise of digital health
What makes an epidemic newsworthy? Can biotech succession succeed? And what's so novel about digital health?
Jul 25, 2019
Episode 71: Elon Musk's monkey cyborg, Gilead's shifting future, & an app for anxiety
Can apps treat anxiety? Is Gilead Sciences back on track? And are we all just brains in a vat?
Jul 18, 2019
Episode 70: A whirlwind week in Washington, Sean Parker's mansion, & remembering a voice in biotech
Is drug pricing too complex for the Trump administration? Would you recognize Tom Hanks at a party? And what does it mean when famous executives quit?
Jul 11, 2019
Episode 69: The future of AbbVieGan, the dogma of amyloid, & some questionable biotech marketing
Can Botox make Big Pharma attractive? What qualifies as a "cabal"? And will the CRISPR patent fight outlive us all?
Jun 27, 2019
Episode 68: A controversial desire drug, courtroom genealogy, & the quest for longer life
Is desire a matter of medicine? Can you convict on genealogy? And what do you get the alleged bride who has it all?
Jun 20, 2019
Episode 67: Biohacking meets bureaucracy, and the latest twist in CRISPR world
Is biohacking a crime? Who came up with the latest CRISPR trick? And did Rage Against the Machine sell out?
Jun 13, 2019
Episode 66: The future of cancer treatment, blockbusters interrupted, & an infamous biotech party
Who won ASCO? Is pharma sandbagging its blockbusters? And what do gladiators have to do with biotech?
Jun 06, 2019
Episode 65: A special episode from the halls of the ASCO meeting
What can be done to improve HPV vaccination rates in the U.S.? How does the genetic signature of a tumor lead to an effective cancer drug? What’s it like being a doctor and a cancer patient?
Jun 04, 2019
Episode 64: Feuding professors, failing businesses, and journalism 101
Who's guilty of "clickbait"? Are spit tubes a bad business? And why are academics emulating Pusha T?
May 30, 2019
Episode 63: Your ASCO preview, genetic whiplash, and a journalist's experience with cancer
What should you watch for at the year's biggest cancer conference? Why are people having 23andMe-induced identity crises? And what's it like to be at once a journalist and a cancer patient?
May 23, 2019
Episode 62: Drug pricing partisanship, tech's march into health care, and Tinder for clinical trials
Has drug price reform already stalled? How far has tech come in medicine? And should there be an app for that?
May 16, 2019
Episode 61: Pharma felonies, cardiac CRISPR, and a strange day at the FDA
Are law-breaking pharma executives the new mob bosses? Can genome editing preventing heart attacks? And can the FDA regulate drug prices?
May 09, 2019
Episode 60: Boardroom drama, whiskey-fueled science, & millionaires on mushrooms
Is Biogen bracing for a fight? What does Jack Daniels have to do with immunotherapy? And will "micro-dosing" light the way to actual therapies?
May 02, 2019
Episode 59: When scientists get mad online, for-profit cancer care, & the perils of naming a startup
Who gets to be "influential"? Should you be skeptical of for-profit hospitals? And should George Lucas fire his attorneys?
Apr 25, 2019
Episode 58: Democratizing CRISPR, drugging the undruggable, and reading pharma's fine print
Who gets to "play God"? Can old technologies learn new tricks? And what does "drug price" even mean?
Apr 18, 2019
Episode 57: Trump’s drug pricing foot soldier, Gilead’s uncertain future, & transpacific angst
How do you sell lefty ideas to righty politicians? What’s going on at Gilead Sciences? And why are biotech investors freaking out?
Apr 11, 2019
Episode 56: Cheaper insulin, the next Juul, and diagnosing disease with sound
What if pharma just charged less for drugs? Can speaking three syllables reveal whether you're depressed? And why is Snoop Dogg selling erectile dysfunction pills on TV?
Apr 04, 2019
Episode 55: The fate of Bristol-Myers-Celgene, the tragedy of SIDS, and health tech's challenges
Why can't investors think for themselves? How do parents cope with inexplicable tragedy? And is tech prepared for the toughest parts of health care?
Mar 28, 2019
Episode 54: Another big Alzheimer’s failure, postpartum progress, and Long Island shores
Should Alzheimer's researchers just give up on amyloid plaques? What will a new drug mean for new moms with postpartum depression? And which coastal region of Long Island is superior?
Mar 21, 2019
Episode 53: How startups stop, the new FDA boss, and Theranos on the big screen
Who deserves credit for a new gene therapy? How do you push stop on a startup? And what does MC Hammer have to do with Theranos?
Mar 14, 2019
Episode 52: Every conceivable angle of Scott Gottlieb's FDA resignation
Why is Scott Gottlieb quitting the FDA? Who will replace him? And what's the proper elastane content of a skinny jean?
Mar 07, 2019
Episode 51: CEOs at the Senate, merger mania, and sleuthing startups
Is this the age of the big biotech buyout? Is cold brew a business expense? And how do you pronounce "Gonzalez"?
Feb 28, 2019
Episode 50: A big scoop on opioid marketing
What did an opioid patriarch say under oath? Why did everyone want to know so badly? And how might it shape the conversation around the opioid crisis?
Feb 22, 2019
Episode 49: Painkiller racketeering, the limits of genetic tests, and pharma's day on the Hill
Is pharma about to have its Big Tobacco moment? Are we overestimating human genetics? And can sales reps rap? We discuss all that and more on the latest episode of “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. First, Boston Globe reporter Jonathan Saltzman joins us to discuss the case against Insys Therapeutics, the maker of a powerful painkiller now accused of running a nationwide racketeering scheme. Then Dr. Laura Esserman of the University of California, San Francisco, comes on to break down the debate over genetic testing for cancer risk. And then we give you the need-to-know on an upcoming Senate hearing that will see seven pharma executives get grilled on the rising cost of medicines in the U.S.
Feb 21, 2019
Episode 48: The AI hype machine, ketamine's future, and the rocky path ahead for NASH
When will AI replace your radiologist? What can pharma learn from ketamine? And is liver disease more complicated than anyone thought?
Feb 14, 2019
Episode 47: A bad day for bold biotech, campaign 2020, and where do drugs come from?
Are we underestimating biology? Will Hot 97 decide the presidency? And who owns the scientific means of production?
Feb 07, 2019
Episode 46: Another Alzheimer's setback, crypto for biotech, and a blessing of unicorns
Is the drug industry wrong about Alzheimer's disease? Can cryptocurrency fund actual science? And should you feel sorry for Big Pharma?
Jan 31, 2019
Episode 45: CRISPR upheaval, Celgene's chutzpah, and canine genomics
Is genome editing harder than anyone thought? Will no one weep for Celgene? And is it time to sequence your dog?
Jan 24, 2019
Episode 44: FDA furloughs, '80s pop radio, and video game therapeutics
Is the FDA going broke? Can video games be drugs? And when did "Flashdance" come out?
Jan 17, 2019
Episode 43: A people's history of J.P. Morgan
Do drug developers tip well? Is biotech safe for 6-year-olds? And what's a Cable Car Cosmo?
Jan 10, 2019
Episode 42: Parsing Bristol-Myers-Celgene, grousing about JPM, and how to not be boring
Are megamergers bad for business? Is it time for biotech's biggest gathering to find a new home? And can a "need" be anything but "unmet"?
Jan 03, 2019
Episode 41: Watson's latest stumble, a glimpse into the crystal ball, and revisiting Sarepta
What will become of biotech in 2019? What's the legacy of Sarepta Therapeutics? And how do you say "overhyped" in Mandarin?
Dec 20, 2018
Episode 40: Gilead’s new boss, the year that was, and the thing about DNA tests
Is Gilead Sciences entering a bold new era? What even happened in 2018? And how useful is a genetic credit score?
Dec 13, 2018
Episode 39: Using the word 'cure,' an FDA loophole, & making biotech history
Can gene therapy cure sickle cell disease? Is an expensive drug better than a free one? And will biotech see its shadow in 2019?
Dec 06, 2018
Episode 38: Your guide to the #CRISPRbabies controversy
What does it mean to edit a person? Has science run afoul of basic ethics? And what's the time difference to Hong Kong?
Nov 29, 2018
Episode 37: The biggest-ever IPO, drug prices rising in tandem, and burner Twitter accounts
Can unicorns float? Is a hot dog a sandwich? And how are drug companies like gas stations?
Nov 15, 2018
Episode 36: What the midterms mean, a golden age on hold, and the $4 million drug
Is pharma in for a swarm of subpoenas? Are we running out of ideas in oncology? And can a drug possibly be worth $4 million a dose?
Nov 08, 2018
Episode 35: Biotech's October slump, the precise cost of precision, and breaking postpartum silence
Why are biotech stocks in the dumps? Is the latest in cancer care overhyped? And what does "folie à deux" mean?
Nov 01, 2018
Episode 34: Pharma at the ballot box, the latest Alzheimer's argument, and a rare disease dilemma
Can pharma-shaming get someone re-elected? How rare is too rare when it comes to biotech research? And what does "positive" even mean, really?
Oct 25, 2018
Episode 33: Drug prices on TV, immortal blockbusters, and genetic privacy
Are prescription drugs like new cars? Is pharma's grand bargain a sham? And who keeps your DNA safe?
Oct 18, 2018
Episode 32: Fake friends at the FDA, cancer counter-narratives, and biotech's bear turn
Is the next big idea in oncology a bust? What does "successful" mean exactly? And why does Wall Street hate biotech all of a sudden?
Oct 11, 2018
Episode 31: Nobel snubs, millenial founders, and a new kind of lightning round
Did the Nobel Prizes go to the right scientists? Why is there so much disdain for biotech's millenial entrepreneurs? And do journalists have a good taste in '80s music?
Oct 04, 2018
Episode 30: A fish oil epiphany, VC monopolies and ketamine clinics
Was everyone wrong about fish oil? Is venture capital a cartel? And what's with all those ketamine clinics?
Sep 27, 2018
Episode 29: A Hong Kong heat-check, a $20 million wrist slap, and pharma's (other) diversity problem
Is a biotech bubble inflating in China? Do the feds coddle CEOs? And why don't clinical trials look like America?
Sep 20, 2018
Episode 28: Founders' funds, doctors' disclosures, and the subtle art of beeping
Is biotech too founder-friendly? Is honesty overrated? And how do you tell a good beep from a bad one?
Sep 13, 2018
Episode 27: Live from Boston!
Should genome editors be worried? Has 2018 been a bummer? And are voters ready to love Big Pharma? We discuss this and more on a special live episode from the BioPharm America conference in Boston.
Sep 06, 2018
Episode 26: FDA shows its teeth, biotech fish oil might be pointless, & treating McCain's cancer
Is the FDA as lenient as everyone thinks? Can fish oil be a multibillion-dollar drug? And why aren't there better treatments for brain cancer?
Aug 30, 2018
Episode 25: A genome-editing first, Trump on Wall Street, and biotech red flags
Can genome-editing work in actual people? Are CEOs oversharing? And how do you sniff out a bad bet before it happens?
Aug 23, 2018
Episode 24: A lesson in startup jargon, pharma's bare Alzheimer's cupboard, and the cost of CAR-T
How much is a shot at curing cancer worth? Where are all the drugs for late-stage Alzheimer's disease? And what on Earth is an "oversubscribed Series A round"?
Aug 16, 2018
Episode 23: Congressional insider trading, PETA and fake meat, & doctors vs. fund managers
Can insider trading charges derail political campaigns? Should you trust a fund manager over a doctor? And how many rats would you trade for a cow?
Aug 09, 2018
Episode 22: Biotech's battle for talent, Sanofi's second act, and climbing Mt. Everest
What juicy perks do biotech startups offer to lure increasingly hard-to-find talent? How does Sanofi plan to make up for lost time in the lucrative field of oncology? And veteran biotech journalist Luke Timmerman talks about what it's like to climb Mt. Everest.
Aug 02, 2018
Episode 21 - A debatable Alzheimer's breakthrough, Gilead's golden age, and "robust" data
What qualifies as "robust" when it comes to data? Is digital health a bubble? And can Gilead Sciences survive without men named John?
Jul 26, 2018
Episode 20 - CRISPR freakouts, drug prices meet elections, and a busy earnings season
Can drug prices swing an election? Is every quarter a “great quarter“? And why is everyone freaking out about CRISPR? Listen, and all will be explained.
Jul 19, 2018
Episode 19: Trump's telephonic prowess, Biogen's mysterious future, & the rise of 'hypelines'
Can phone calls bring down drug prices? Do mom-and-pop investors have a prayer against hedge funds? And how do you know whether an Alzheimer's drug actually works?
Jul 12, 2018
Episode 18: Biotech's six-month review, how to become a day trader and soul-searching analysts
Adam and Damian recap the past six months in biotech. Investor and philanthropist, Sheff Station, stops by and gives tips on how to become a day trader, and analysts questioning their very existence.
Jul 05, 2018
Episode 17: A friendly FDA, biosimilar awkwardness and how to sell drugs in China
How did the FDA become so friendly to the drug industry? The thorny issue of using 23andMe to unite families separated at the border, and Rebecca explains how drugs are priced in China.
Jun 28, 2018
Episode 16: Sarepta's big week, Theranos' legal woes and parsing AI hype
Is Sarepta Therapeutics worth $10 billion? Will Theranos' Elizabeth Holmes go behind bars? And how does AI fit into biotech?
Jun 21, 2018
Episode 15: Problematic parties, Nitpicking NASH, and an opioid documentary from STAT
The problem with the topless dancers at PABNAB. Are investors overestimating the market for fatty liver drugs? And how many lives do biotech entrepreneurs get?
Jun 14, 2018
Episode 14: Twitter vitriol, biotech jargon, and the plight of the CEO
Why is Twitter so mean to Axovant? Adam teaches a crash course on biostatistics. And will sci-fi gene and cell therapies ever go mainstream.
Jun 07, 2018
Episode 13: Spending millions on fatty liver disease. Overhyped cancer drugs. Who goes to BIO?
Is the drug industry spending millions on a made-up disease? Have the latest cancer drugs been overhyped? And why does anyone go to BIO?
May 31, 2018
Episode 12: Ebola should worry you, again; 23andMe's World Cup whoops; Don't drink sunscreen
How worried should you be about Ebola? Can the government lower drug prices without hurting the drug industry? And is socceromics a thing? Listen this week to find out.
May 24, 2018
Episode 11: Inside the Theranos collapse, Valeant's latest legal lumps, and a few biotech hot takes
What do you call a unicorn without a horn? Is your colleague wearing a wire? And is Jentadueto a drug name or a complicated espresso drink?
May 17, 2018
Episode #10: Cohen, Trump, Novartis, oh my; Spark + Amish; Genetic testing at your doc's office?
On today's show, we dig into the no good, very bad day Novartis had when the world got wind of its ties to President Trump's personal attorney, a discussion of how the world's biggest cancer conference used to be the Wild West for investors, and an exploration of one health system's plan to bring genomics to the masses. Also STAT's Eric Boodman joins us to talk about how a pricey new gene therapy has created a fascinating situation in Amish country.
May 10, 2018
Episode #9 - Bill Gates on deadly flu, Chinese biotech bubbles, Golden State killer genetics
We talk to Bill Gates about the flu that could kill millions. Is China too enamored with biotech startups? And how do you find a cold case killer? Genetics.
May 03, 2018
Episode #8 - Megamergers, migraines, and biotech's Four Horsemen
What's a good use of $64 billion? Is Big Biotech boring now? And what's the best way to sell hair restoration products to men?
Apr 26, 2018
Episode #7 - Coke and Pepsi of lung cancer, a debatable drug price, and a cure for capitalism
Is Bristol-Myers Squibb into self-sabotage? Is Congress coming for Gut Guy? And why does Goldman Sachs love money so much?
Apr 19, 2018
Episode #6 - Biotech buyouts, CEO breakups, and The Rock does CRISPR
Why are biotech investors suddenly so exuberant? What does it mean when a CEO scrubs his LinkedIn profile? And can CRISPR turn your dog into a winged hellhound bent on destroying Chicago?
Apr 12, 2018
Episode #5 - The FDA's cold shoulder, the latest CAR-T contender, and BuzzFeed's scoop on Grindr
What's it like to be a biotech investor? Do you know where your genetic data are? And what does it mean when the FDA swipes left on your drug?
Apr 05, 2018
Episode #4 - Mr. Drug CEO doesn't go to DC, billionaires fighting drug prices, a biotech report card
Why aren't pharma CEOs getting hauled into Congress? Which biotech companies got a failing grade this quarter? And why is there no Kelley Blue Book for the price tag of a medicine?
Mar 29, 2018
Episode #3 - A gene therapy story, breaking down Incyte’s future, and was Gottlieb wrong to try?
What’s it like to watch gene therapy happen? Is the next big cancer clinical trial going to work? And is “right to try” going to defang the FDA?
Mar 22, 2018
Episode #2 - Theranos’s fate, biotech’s awkward SXSW, and a word on cow loogies
Did Elizabeth Holmes get off easy? Why does biotech bother with SXSW? And what does shoving a tube into a dead cow’s throat have to do with biotech?
Mar 15, 2018
Episode #1 - Shkreli's sentence, biotech froth, and a blood party
How long is Martin Shkreli going to be in prison? Is the biotech bubble about to burst? And what's it like to attend a blood-swapping gala? Listen to our first episode of, "The Readout LOUD."
Mar 08, 2018
Coming soon: "The Readout LOUD"
An introduction to a new weekly biotech podcast from STAT.
Mar 02, 2018