Welcome to the 2024 Life Sciences Yearbook from the Legal 500 and Legal Business, sponsored by Herbert Smith Freehills.
This yearly publication will offer insight into the issues facing life sciences companies in the wake of Brexit, as well as interviews with leading private practice lawyers in the sector and a data-driven snapshot of the top firms and practitioners from the Legal 500. Continue reading “Life Sciences Yearbook 2024 – Editor’s letter”
Buzz about blockbuster drug developments, expiring patents and the launch of the European Union’s Unified Patent Court – 2023 certainly kept the life sciences sector on its toes.
Against a backdrop of several of the world’s best-selling drugs nearing their patent expiration dates and the market getting to grips with the implications of the long-awaited EU patent court, leading practitioners at UK law firms provide their perspective on the evolving world of IP and patent litigation in the life sciences sector – and what these changes mean for corporates and their in-house legal teams.
Continue reading “‘You’d be a brave innovator to ignore the UK’ – why patent work is booming in the post-Brexit UK life sciences market”
After years of delays caused by geopolitical instability and the Covid-19 pandemic, the new regulatory landscape for the life sciences industry is beginning to take shape in both the UK and the EU.
As the UK pushes ahead with its post-Brexit journey of divergence, establishing itself as an innovation-friendly environment in the global life sciences market has become of paramount importance. In contrast, the EU’s attempts to draft comprehensive laws on AI have attracted criticism from the medical devices industry, prompting overburdened innovators to turn to more investment-friendly locations. Continue reading “Taking back control – the post-pandemic landscape for life sciences regulation”
Why did you decide to specialise in life sciences?
I have a science background – a PhD in organic chemistry – and worked for a short time as a medicinal chemist for Glaxo. I also had an interest in the humanities at school, so law had always seemed to be an option, and life sciences law made sense. I had assumed that I would go into IP/patents, but was lucky enough to meet a life sciences regulatory lawyer from Covington and spent some time there before my training contract. I came back to Covington on qualification and I am still here 25 years later. I clearly made the right choice. Continue reading “Life Sciences perspectives: Grant Castle”
The Legal 500’s life science and healthcare industry focus ranking was introduced three years ago to recognise firms with dedicated cross-practice teams advising high-profile clients across the sector. Continue reading “The Legal 500 view: Healthy competition”
Zina Chatzidimitriadou, senior managing associate at Sidley, on why she picked a career in life sciences law
Why did you decide to specialise in life sciences law?
In 2009, in my previous life as a molecular biologist at the Cancer Research UK institute, I experienced the multiple issues and complexities facing researchers and people involved in the development of life-saving treatments and methods. Life sciences emerged as the natural field of law for me and, while I am biased, I believe it is the most exciting field of law. Continue reading “Rising stars: Zina Chatzidimitriadou – ‘It is the one legal area that affects every single one of us and is, above all, human-centred’”
Baker McKenzie’s Jaspreet Takhar on the future of digital health solutions
What made you decide to specialise in life sciences law?
I specialise in advising on digital health solutions – that means advising on the regulation of health data, digital health solutions (including AI solutions, software and medical devices), as well as contracting in this space. I genuinely find the digital health space as exciting as it gets! The legal landscape is changing at breakneck speed, and I spend a few minutes every morning scanning for new regulations, new announcements and new guidance. Hot topics for legal developments include the regulation of AI, the European Health Data Space, and local laws on medical confidentiality. Continue reading “Rising stars: Jaspreet Takhar – ‘EU regulators are preparing an avalanche of new laws that are going to have a monumental impact on pharma and medtech’”
Dr Chris Boyle, counsel at Sidley, on the risks and opportunities facing the industry
What do you most enjoy about being a life sciences lawyer?
My passion for science led me to qualify and practice as a veterinary surgeon before I discovered that scientists and clinicians are uniquely placed to make a big impact in law, and I requalified as a life sciences lawyer. The best thing about being a life sciences lawyer is that I can harness my scientific interest and knowledge to serve clients on a far greater scale than I could in veterinary practice, to help them develop the health technologies and services of tomorrow. It is particularly helpful to ‘speak the same language’ when I am advising on matters that require interactions with healthcare professionals and regulators – for example it has proven key in assisting clients with NICE health technology assessments. Continue reading “Rising stars: Dr Chris Boyle – ‘AI is going to have a transformative impact on the life sciences industry’”
David Gibson, senior associate at McDermott Will & Emery
Why did you decide to specialise in life sciences law, and what’s the best thing about being a life sciences lawyer?
I find the subject matter fascinating, and I am genuinely curious about new technologies and medicines and how they can be used, shared and applied to improve healthcare for patients across the world. We are often involved in helping our clients with strategic projects and transactions, partnering with other organisations and bringing products to market and to scale – often across different jurisdictions. As a transactional and projects lawyer, I enjoy working with clients to bring the commercial, financing, regulatory and other legal elements together: it is an area of law that has a bit of everything! Continue reading “Rising stars: David Gibson – ‘There are so many great new technologies and medicines with potential to make a difference to populations and treatment pathways but key challenges remain in regulating them’”
China’s life sciences and healthcare (LS&H) industry underwent an unprecedented transformation in 2023 consisting of numerous challenges and opportunities. Within this year, BD transactions primarily included out-licensing of ex-China rights, China commercialisation partnering, asset acquisition and regaining drug product rights, which reflected the courage of China’s LS&H market players to proactively seek changes and rebuild corporate strategies in a quickly shifting market landscape.
Fangda Partners’ life sciences team remained active in advising on LS&H corporate transactions in 2023 and recent key deal highlights included (a) Hengrui Pharma (600276.SH)’s out-licensing partnership with Aiolos Bio to exploit the innovative anti-TSLP mAb (SHR-1905) outside of Greater China; (b) Kanghua Biological (300841.SZ)’s grant of exclusive rights to HilleVax for exploitation of recombinant hexavalent VLP norovirus vaccine outside of Greater China; (c) CStone Pharma (2616.HK)’s sale of the Tibsovo® (Ivosidenib) business, asset and goodwill thereof in Greater China and Singapore to Les Laboratoires Servier; and (d) a number of commercialisation arrangements entered into by multinational pharmaceutical companies with leading CSOs. Continue reading “Sponsored thought leadership: China life sciences – Transaction insights and notable industry trends”