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Business-in-Brief: Kodak enters the pharma space, multiyear partnerships, and more

  • Jnana Therapeutics has signed a multi-target collaboration and licensing agreement with Roche for the discovery of small molecule drugs. The deal, worth over $1 billion, will focus on immune-mediated and neurological diseases – specifically small molecules targeting the solute carrier family (SLC) of metabolite transporters for regulating cellular metabolism. The collaboration will use Jnana’s RAPID platform, which screens small molecule libraries for novel modulators of SLC transporters (1).
  • Precision diagnostics developer Invivoscribe is making the leap into drug development, with plans to develop and commercialize small molecules for blood cancers, licensed from Domainex. In a press release, Invivoscribe CEO Jeffrey Miller said that the company will seek to make use of its regulatory experience and network of clinical laboratories with access to oncology patients (2). A new drug development division will oversee the project.
  • Kodak was set to enter the pharma space after receiving a $765 million federal loan from the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) to manufacture APIs for key generic medicines (3). But, after the US Securities and Exchange Commission launched a probe into the deal following allegations of suspicious trading, the DFC tweeted that it would not be proceeding with the deal because “recent allegations of wrongdoing raise serious concerns” (4). A group of House Democrats had also questioned why the government would choose a camera maker with little experience in pharma manufacturing (5). 


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  1. Pharmaceutical Business Review, “Roche, Jnana sign multi-target collaboration deal for small molecule drugs” (2020). Available at: 
  2. Cision, “Invivoscribe Launches New Division for Drug Development” (2020). Available at:
  3. Fierce Pharma, “Camera maker Kodak dives into drug manufacturing with $765M federal loan” (2020). Available at: 
  4. Fierce Pharma, “Kodak $765 million manufacturing loan on the rocks as red flags multiply” (2020). Available at: 
  5. Fierce Pharma, “House Dems launch probe into Kodak unexpected $765M drug manufacturing loan from the feds” (2020). Available at: 
About the Author
James Strachan

Over the course of my Biomedical Sciences degree it dawned on me that my goal of becoming a scientist didn’t quite mesh with my lack of affinity for lab work. Thinking on my decision to pursue biology rather than English at age 15 – despite an aptitude for the latter – I realized that science writing was a way to combine what I loved with what I was good at.


From there I set out to gather as much freelancing experience as I could, spending 2 years developing scientific content for International Innovation, before completing an MSc in Science Communication. After gaining invaluable experience in supporting the communications efforts of CERN and IN-PART, I joined Texere – where I am focused on producing consistently engaging, cutting-edge and innovative content for our specialist audiences around the world.

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