Next Wave in Immune Therapeutics

Kicking off the first in a series of scientific focused virtual partnering events, on 29-30 September 2020, Johnson & Johnson Innovation, in collaboration with Janssen Immunology, brought together entrepreneurs, start-ups, researchers, and scientists from across EMEA and beyond. This event focused on state-of-the-art developments in immunology, and the full report of the event is summarised below, together with recordings of each session.

But, the conversation on accelerating the next potential breakthrough in immunology does not stop with the event. Building meaningful potential collaborations and partnerships with external innovators is a core objective for the Johnson & Johnson Innovation immunology team. If you are active in one of our immunology areas of interest, and wish to be considered for a 1:1 meeting with the team, please submit a request using this form.

An exciting program dedicated to innovation in autoimmune diseases

We covered two important topics. First, we shared how we are approaching the new science, challenges, and opportunities in the field of autoimmune diseases. David Lee, Global Immunology Therapeutic Area Head at Janssen, discussed the shared vision and focus of Johnson & Johnson in the immunology R&D space. He talked about wanting to create a future where patients suffering from autoimmune diseases have access to more and more transformative therapies. David also emphasised the crucial role of partner programmes and investing in collaboration with academia and early stage innovators to spur innovation. You can watch his keynote below.

After David’s keynote, a panel discussion took place moderated by Jason Witherington, Vice President and Immunology Lead for Europe, Middle East, and Africa at Johnson & Johnson Innovation. In addition to David, the panel also included Houman Ashrafian, Managing Partner of SV Health Investors, and Erika Pearce, Director of the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics. They discussed the challenges and opportunities to harnessing early innovation in Europe, and the region’s rich network of immunology centres of excellence, collaborations, emerging companies and world-class expertise in autoimmune diseases. You can watch the recording of the panel discussion below.

Secondly, we looked at how Johnson & Johnson Innovation collaborates with academia, emerging companies, and other innovators. Nerida Scott, Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation EMEA, and Elena Fernandez-Kleinlein, Head of JLABS EMEA at Johnson & Johnson Innovation, outlined Johnson & Johnson’s powerful collaboration and co-creation model, including:

  • Flexible deal structures
  • Funding and investing
  • Company incubation and facilities
  • R&D collaboration and acceleration
  • Commercial and access expertise

Below you can watch the recording of Nerida’s and Elena’s briefing.

The event concluded with pitches from two exciting emerging companies with scientific roots in Europe, Rheos Medicines and OMass Therapeutics. You can watch the first pitch below, and access the slides for the second pitch here.

Afterwards, the community came together during roundtable discussions on key themes from the event.

If you are inspired by what you have learned and you are active in one of our immunology areas of interest, please use this form to be considered for a 1:1 meeting with the team.