Perspectives

As scientists, we are wired with a passion for learning and research. We bring that to our work as biotech investors and company builders. We belong to a like-minded community engaged in a vibrant discourse with itself and with the public on a variety of topics ranging from business best-practices to the future of healthcare. This growing collection of writings, together with our other outreach efforts, represents our contribution to the discourse. We hope you find them useful.

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ARTICLE

America, the Engine of Biomedical Discovery, Should Be Trump’s ‘Most Favored Nation’

Posted SEPTEMBER 2020

Post Image

Imagine if John F. Kennedy had stepped to the podium at Rice University on Sept. 12, 1962 and said: “We choose to go to the moon. We don’t know how to do it, but we’ll pay what seems like a fair price for one rocket — something like what the Soviets are paying their people.” That wouldn’t inspire anyone. It certainly wouldn’t have motivated the NASA contractors charged with delivering on the audacious vision of putting a man on the moon and returning him home safely.

Article

Aerovate Therapeutics Emerges From RA Capital Incubator

Posted August 2020

Post Image

Aerovate Therapeutics Emerges From RA Capital Incubator With $72.6 Million Funding For Potential Disease-modifying Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension Therapy. AV-101 is a Proprietary Inhaled Version of Imatinib, Which Has Proven Efficacy Treating PAH; Aerovate Was Founded and Seeded by RA Capital Management; Series A is Led by Sofinnova Investments; Includes New Investors Atlas Venture, Cormorant Asset Management, Surveyor Capital and Osage University Partners.

Covid-19

Covid-19 Discussions

Posted AUGUST 2020

To help break down the complex biotechnological landscape surrounding Covid-19 and our maps, we offer periodic, interactive, webinar-style discussions led by members of our team. We welcome all those involved in biotechnology or public health, including scientific innovators, policymakers, members of the media, academics, medical professionals, and representatives of non-profits or NGOs.

ARTICLE

If Trikafta Isn’t Good Enough for ICER, What Drug Is?

Posted MAY 2020

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) recently concluded that Trikafta, a new, groundbreaking cystic fibrosis drug developed by Vertex, isn't worth its price. But ICER's cost-effectiveness analyses routinely refuse to include variables that do not suit the organization's political agenda. Insisting on modeling a drug's launch price as its price forever without taking into account the fact that it will go generic is distinctly disingenuous.

ARTICLE

Covid-19 Teaches Us the Real Definition of a 'Novel' Drug

Posted MARCH 2020

Many leaders believe that pursuing novelty should be the biotech industry's sole purpose. Though "novelty at all costs" resonates with a public skeptical of incremental innovation, this principle can do more harm than good. A therapy or intervention that solves an unmet need is novel in every way that matters. Let's change the story and invest in drug development to address needs not yet met by the known uses of generic drugs.

Covid-19

Covid-19 Content

Posted MARCH 2020

Along with three detailed landscape maps, our team has published numerous articles, videos, and audio recordings to break down core principles related to the Covid-19 crisis. We encourage all to browse our collection and allow these materials to start conversations that will help improve public health systems worldwide.

Explainer

Understanding The Value Of Your Equity - How To Critically Evaluate Your Biotech Job Offer

Posted March 2020

If you are looking forward to a career in biotech, then you are an investor. Sound strange? Not at all--time is money, you are investing your time in a company, and they will pay you in both cash and equity. 10,000 shares of one company could be worth much more than 30,000 shares of another company, but to know when that’s true, you need to know what questions to ask.

Book

The Great American Drug Deal

Posted January 2020

The Great American Drug Deal examines the healthcare landscape through the lens of the Biotech Social Contract, including the government's role in inventing drugs, direct-to-consumer advertising, the opioid crisis, the price-jacking of old drugs, and the impact on America of lower drug costs in other countries.

INTERVIEW

PM Corner: A Conversation with RA Capital's Peter Kolchinsky

Posted DECEMBER 2019

Evercore ISI — We are continuing our series of discussions with leading healthcare and biopharma portfolio managers as we try to leverage the top minds in the investment industry to help inform our own views in this rapidly changing biopharma era. RA Capital is one of the leading dedicated healthcare investment funds and has been built over nearly two decades with a unique approach to analyzing therapeutic categories...

Explainer

Beyond Crossover: Rethinking the IPO Process - Introducing the "Series I" IPO and Rules-based Allocation

Posted August 2018

Investors that share your vision of your company should be willing to invest larger amounts (that are harder to sell), even at high valuations, than those who don’t appreciate its full potential but sense an opportunity for quick gains (and would only want smaller, flippable amounts).

ARTICLE SERIES

The Biotech Social Contract

Posted December 2017

The Biotech Social Contract series on Medium defines the biopharmaceutical industry’s social contract with America, examines practices that deviate from that contract, and proposes refinements to healthcare policy to ensure that our continued investment in scientific progress ultimately yields affordable, effective therapeutics for future generations.

INTERVIEW

Investing Upstream

Posted February 2016

BioCentury — After a decade of focusing on public investments and later adding private investments to its remit, RA Capital is getting into the business of starting companies from whole cloth. The firm thinks having a dedicated financier from start to acquisition or profitability ofers the continuity of support that many companies are seeking...

INTERVIEW

Q&A: Biotech Investing with Crossover Fund RA Capital

Posted September 2015

FINalternatives — The first word that comes to mind when chatting with the team at Boston-based RA Capital Management is intriguing. The company is basically a sophisticated life sciences think-tank wrapped in a fund that finances private, IPO and follow-on financings for a portfolio of early-stage biotech companies. The company’s crossover fund, offered to institutional investors, has more than $1 billion in AUM...

INTERVIEW

RA Capital: Flexibility builds innovation

Posted August 2015

Partnering News — Flexibility is the watchword for investment at RA Capital Management. As Peter Kolchinsky, managing director, explained, “Investors should be as flexible as possible...

ARTICLE

Hepatitis C Commercial Game Theory

Posted January 2015

Xconomy National — Anyone either celebrating or fearing the start of a Hepatitis C drug price war should take a break from the excitement to consider that a far more nuanced and profound game is at hand...

ARTICLE

Rethinking Venture Philanthropy After the Kalydeco Windfall

Posted December 2014

Xconomy Boston — The Cystic Fibrosis (CF) Foundation’s big win in venture philanthropy can fuel constructive competition among companies developing innovative CF drugs, benefiting both patients and the healthcare system by increasing future treatment options and reducing their cost...

ARTICLE

How to Save $200 Billion and Cure Hepatitis C

Posted July 2013

Xconomy Boston — Wall Street is buzzing with anticipation about the first new all-oral drugs for hepatitis C approaching the market. The high rate of HCV infection and dissatisfaction with current treatments have created a potential multi-billion dollar bonanza for drug companies...

ARTICLE

Solution Development: A Model For Structuring Biotechs And Developing Better Drugs

Posted September 2012

IN VIVO — Industry must think differently about funding high-risk/reward development of drug candidates against novel targets. Multiplexed Phase II proof-of-concept trials can light a path toward lower-risk pivotal studies and provide a model for building biotechs to deliver what patients, providers, payors, and investors all want: solutions...

Book

The Entrepreneur’s Guide to a Biotech Startup

Posted January 2005

If you are considering starting your own biotech company, you will appreciate the wealth of practical information packed into The Entrepreneur’s Guide to a Biotech Startup. This free 100-page eBook is based on personal interviews with entrepreneurs, investors, attorneys, and other professionals who understand biotech venture creation and are eager to share their insights.

ARTICLE

How To Create A Lasting Peace Between Biotech Management, Shareholders And Employees

Posted July/August 2011

IN VIVO — Biotech executives make strategic decisions based on incentives that aren’t necessarily aligned to benefit either the company’s investors or employees. Three modifications to business as usual would help solve the problem and lead to improvements in the productivity of people and capital in the sector...

ARTICLE

America, the Engine of Biomedical Discovery, Should Be Trump’s ‘Most Favored Nation’

Posted SEPTEMBER 2020

Post Image

Imagine if John F. Kennedy had stepped to the podium at Rice University on Sept. 12, 1962 and said: “We choose to go to the moon. We don’t know how to do it, but we’ll pay what seems like a fair price for one rocket — something like what the Soviets are paying their people.” That wouldn’t inspire anyone. It certainly wouldn’t have motivated the NASA contractors charged with delivering on the audacious vision of putting a man on the moon and returning him home safely.

Article

Aerovate Therapeutics Emerges From RA Capital Incubator

Posted August 2020

Post Image

Aerovate Therapeutics Emerges From RA Capital Incubator With $72.6 Million Funding For Potential Disease-modifying Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension Therapy. AV-101 is a Proprietary Inhaled Version of Imatinib, Which Has Proven Efficacy Treating PAH; Aerovate Was Founded and Seeded by RA Capital Management; Series A is Led by Sofinnova Investments; Includes New Investors Atlas Venture, Cormorant Asset Management, Surveyor Capital and Osage University Partners.

ARTICLE

If Trikafta Isn’t Good Enough for ICER, What Drug Is?

Posted MAY 2020

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) recently concluded that Trikafta, a new, groundbreaking cystic fibrosis drug developed by Vertex, isn't worth its price. But ICER's cost-effectiveness analyses routinely refuse to include variables that do not suit the organization's political agenda. Insisting on modeling a drug's launch price as its price forever without taking into account the fact that it will go generic is distinctly disingenuous.

ARTICLE

Covid-19 Teaches Us the Real Definition of a 'Novel' Drug

Posted MARCH 2020

Many leaders believe that pursuing novelty should be the biotech industry's sole purpose. Though "novelty at all costs" resonates with a public skeptical of incremental innovation, this principle can do more harm than good. A therapy or intervention that solves an unmet need is novel in every way that matters. Let's change the story and invest in drug development to address needs not yet met by the known uses of generic drugs.

ARTICLE SERIES

The Biotech Social Contract

Posted December 2017

The Biotech Social Contract series on Medium defines the biopharmaceutical industry’s social contract with America, examines practices that deviate from that contract, and proposes refinements to healthcare policy to ensure that our continued investment in scientific progress ultimately yields affordable, effective therapeutics for future generations.

ARTICLE

Hepatitis C Commercial Game Theory

Posted January 2015

Xconomy National — Anyone either celebrating or fearing the start of a Hepatitis C drug price war should take a break from the excitement to consider that a far more nuanced and profound game is at hand...

ARTICLE

Rethinking Venture Philanthropy After the Kalydeco Windfall

Posted December 2014

Xconomy Boston — The Cystic Fibrosis (CF) Foundation’s big win in venture philanthropy can fuel constructive competition among companies developing innovative CF drugs, benefiting both patients and the healthcare system by increasing future treatment options and reducing their cost...

ARTICLE

How to Save $200 Billion and Cure Hepatitis C

Posted July 2013

Xconomy Boston — Wall Street is buzzing with anticipation about the first new all-oral drugs for hepatitis C approaching the market. The high rate of HCV infection and dissatisfaction with current treatments have created a potential multi-billion dollar bonanza for drug companies...

ARTICLE

Solution Development: A Model For Structuring Biotechs And Developing Better Drugs

Posted September 2012

IN VIVO — Industry must think differently about funding high-risk/reward development of drug candidates against novel targets. Multiplexed Phase II proof-of-concept trials can light a path toward lower-risk pivotal studies and provide a model for building biotechs to deliver what patients, providers, payors, and investors all want: solutions...

ARTICLE

How To Create A Lasting Peace Between Biotech Management, Shareholders And Employees

Posted July/August 2011

IN VIVO — Biotech executives make strategic decisions based on incentives that aren’t necessarily aligned to benefit either the company’s investors or employees. Three modifications to business as usual would help solve the problem and lead to improvements in the productivity of people and capital in the sector...

INTERVIEW

PM Corner: A Conversation with RA Capital's Peter Kolchinsky

Posted DECEMBER 2019

Evercore ISI — We are continuing our series of discussions with leading healthcare and biopharma portfolio managers as we try to leverage the top minds in the investment industry to help inform our own views in this rapidly changing biopharma era. RA Capital is one of the leading dedicated healthcare investment funds and has been built over nearly two decades with a unique approach to analyzing therapeutic categories...

INTERVIEW

Investing Upstream

Posted February 2016

BioCentury — After a decade of focusing on public investments and later adding private investments to its remit, RA Capital is getting into the business of starting companies from whole cloth. The firm thinks having a dedicated financier from start to acquisition or profitability ofers the continuity of support that many companies are seeking...

INTERVIEW

Q&A: Biotech Investing with Crossover Fund RA Capital

Posted September 2015

FINalternatives — The first word that comes to mind when chatting with the team at Boston-based RA Capital Management is intriguing. The company is basically a sophisticated life sciences think-tank wrapped in a fund that finances private, IPO and follow-on financings for a portfolio of early-stage biotech companies. The company’s crossover fund, offered to institutional investors, has more than $1 billion in AUM...

INTERVIEW

RA Capital: Flexibility builds innovation

Posted August 2015

Partnering News — Flexibility is the watchword for investment at RA Capital Management. As Peter Kolchinsky, managing director, explained, “Investors should be as flexible as possible...

Book

The Great American Drug Deal

Posted January 2020

The Great American Drug Deal examines the healthcare landscape through the lens of the Biotech Social Contract, including the government's role in inventing drugs, direct-to-consumer advertising, the opioid crisis, the price-jacking of old drugs, and the impact on America of lower drug costs in other countries.

Book

The Entrepreneur’s Guide to a Biotech Startup

Posted January 2005

If you are considering starting your own biotech company, you will appreciate the wealth of practical information packed into The Entrepreneur’s Guide to a Biotech Startup. This free 100-page eBook is based on personal interviews with entrepreneurs, investors, attorneys, and other professionals who understand biotech venture creation and are eager to share their insights.

Covid-19

Covid-19 Discussions

Posted AUGUST 2020

To help break down the complex biotechnological landscape surrounding Covid-19 and our maps, we offer periodic, interactive, webinar-style discussions led by members of our team. We welcome all those involved in biotechnology or public health, including scientific innovators, policymakers, members of the media, academics, medical professionals, and representatives of non-profits or NGOs.

Covid-19

Covid-19 Content

Posted MARCH 2020

Along with three detailed landscape maps, our team has published numerous articles, videos, and audio recordings to break down core principles related to the Covid-19 crisis. We encourage all to browse our collection and allow these materials to start conversations that will help improve public health systems worldwide.

Explainers

Explainers are exclusive, proprietary teaching materials created and published by RA Capital that address a variety of topics related to working for and operating innovative, data-driven biotech companies. We are excited to share the things we've learned with you.

Explainer

Understanding The Value Of Your Equity - How To Critically Evaluate Your Biotech Job Offer

Posted March 2020

If you are looking forward to a career in biotech, then you are an investor. Sound strange? Not at all--time is money, you are investing your time in a company, and they will pay you in both cash and equity. 10,000 shares of one company could be worth much more than 30,000 shares of another company, but to know when that’s true, you need to know what questions to ask.

Explainer

Beyond Crossover: Rethinking the IPO Process - Introducing the "Series I" IPO and Rules-based Allocation

Posted August 2018

Investors that share your vision of your company should be willing to invest larger amounts (that are harder to sell), even at high valuations, than those who don’t appreciate its full potential but sense an opportunity for quick gains (and would only want smaller, flippable amounts).