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Onyx CEO One of 25 Most Influential People in Biopharm Today According to FierceBiotech

February 13, 2013
After a stellar year, as evidenced by inclusion in the second annual FierceBiotech “25 Most Influential People in Bipoharma Today,” N. Anthony (Tony) Coles, MD, Chairman & CEO of Onyx Pharmaceuticals sat down with Steve Usdin, Senior Editor of BioCentury for an early morning Fireside Chat at the 15th Annual BIO CEO & Investor Conference.

To read more about Onyx’s stellar year and their company milestones, visit here.

The biotech retained complete control in the U.S. and Europe for the newly approved multiple myeloma drug Kyprolis. In Coles’ estimate, the global market for multiple myeloma patients will reach eight to ten million by 2016; almost double the existing population of five million. Current therapies each have an agent that has made substantial improvements but presently none have the ability to cure.

Onyx is focused on the core markets in Europe or the Big Five (Germany, Spain, France, Italy and the UK). While each market presents a unique challenge, Europe alone represents almost 50,000 myeloma patients. Outside of the Big Five, Onyx is working with global partners to tap these markets (specifically in the Asia Pacific and Latin America regions). A core leadership team was recently hired in their Switzerland office to focus closely on R&D as the European market continues to shrink due to a difficult reimbursement environment.

Coles contributes a majority of Onyx’s success to two things: a strong mix of collaborations which has allowed business to move rapidly and the continued effort to remain opportunistic. Collaboration is particularly important as the company looks to work with patient advocacy groups. Most recently, Onyx formed a strong partnership with the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation. In 2011, Onyx and the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation launched Carfilzomib Myeloma Access Program (C-MAP), an expanded access program that makes Carfilzomib available to eligible patients in the United States with relapsed and refractory multiple myeloma.

The chat ended with a look at Washington and the potential consequences of sequestration. Coles believes engagement with the government and governmental agencies is crucial to the industry’s success. In order to succeed, Congress must understand the biotech ecosystem.

Looking to learn more about government’s role in industry? BIO will host a Keynote Luncheon Wednesday, April 24th at the 2013 BIO International Convention entitled, Debt, Taxes, Government Services and Politics—Is There a Way Out?. Moderated by BIO’s President & CEO Jim Greenwood, the panel will draw from Senator Simpson and Mr. Bowles inside the beltway knowledge and experience to discuss their non-partisan movement to put America on a better fiscal and economic path.