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#BIO2019 Education Programming Taking Shape

Theresa Brady
Theresa Brady
March 11, 2019

With the BIO International Convention (BIO 2019) only three months away, the finishing touches are being placed on its world-class education program. Once again, the program will explore a diverse array of subjects from business development to the latest scientific discoveries and cutting-edge topics through an exciting lineup of Fireside Chats, Super Sessions, Breakout Sessions, Company Presentations and the ever-popular “Start-up Stadium”.

This year’s event in Philadelphia offers a unique opportunity to gather perspective from an entirely different industry: Sports! A panel session will look at the team culture of Super Bowl champions—the Eagles—and assess its applicability to fast-growing, emerging biotech companies. The discussion will be led by Join Solomon Wilcots, a longtime NFL broadcaster and leader of Russo Partners' Sports-Health Alliance. He will be joined by Mei Mei Hu, CEO of United Neuroscience; Bill Newell, CEO of Sutro BioPharma; and Gil Van Bokkelen, chairman and CEO of Athersys.

Speaking of superstars, Kenneth C. Frazier will be a headliner at BIO 2019, leading a fireside chat. As Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Merck, he is a recognized leader in driving his company to successfully deliver innovative lifesaving medicines and vaccines. Frazier joined the company in 1992 and became CEO in 2011. He has substantially increased Merck’s investment in research and has led the formation of philanthropic initiatives.

Spearheading a town hall meeting are two familiar FDA regulators: Dr. Peter Marks from the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research and Janet Woodcock from the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.

The new Patient Advocacy track this year looks at the many facets of patient advocacy and the increased engagement of this important community within the context of drug development. A Fireside Chat on Understanding the Voices of Patients will be reinforced by panel discussions on how to best incorporate the patient voice, building patient engagement and boosting racial, ethnic and gender diversity in clinical trials.

Highly Prevalent Chronic Diseases will also be a new track in 2019. Stemming from BIO’s original research reports aimed at understanding the breadth and depth of innovation in the current clinical pipeline for treating chronic diseases such as depression, pain and addiction, Type 2 diabetes and obesity, this track will attempt to tackle the issues head-on and explore ways to address the challenges.

The full program and speakers can be viewed on the BIO International Convention website.  Here is a snapshot of the education track announced for the event: