Taconic Insights

Biopharmaceutical Trends and R&D

Taconic Biosciences has remained one of the world's leading providers of research models and services for over 60 years through our commitment to anticipating clients’ needs and industry trends. One of the key trends of the past ten years involves our clients’ need to strategically outsource functional areas of their R&D programs. When companies, academic institutions, government agencies and others outsource certain R&D functions they begin to rely on their collaborators, such as Taconic, to keep them apprised of emerging science and technologies in our specific areas of expertise.
In this spirit of collaboration, we present "Taconic Insights", a new section of our website dedicated to educating the industry on key scientific and technological trends impacting biopharmaceutical R&D. Here you will find the latest insights Taconic can provide in the form of articles, white papers, videos, webinars, presentations, and other media.

Are Dirty Mice Superior Immunology Models?

In a recent review article, David Masopust and his coauthors from the University of Minnesota Medical School discuss the relevancy of mouse models for use in immunological studies and translatability of immune system studies using SPF mice. Of Mice, Dirty Mice, and Men: Using Mice to Understand Human Immunology1 provides a short introduction to the development of the laboratory mouse while calling out a number of significant...

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Here is what CRISPR, the number 62 and pigs have in common!

In December of 2015, Taconic Biosciences published an Insight titled, What do CRISPR, the number 62, and pigs have in common? In that Insight, Dr. George Church of Harvard Medical School explained that his lab had edited 62 genes in pig embryos using CRISPR-Cas9. Their goal was to make pigs better candidates as organ donors for humans. Given their close anatomical size to humans, pigs are thought...

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Marvel Super Heroes Take on IBD

Takeda Pharmaceuticals has joined forces with Marvel Custom Solutions to develop a graphic novel in which the super heroes have Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis, and other characters care for family members or patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). As part of a Takeda program called IBD Unmasked, the graphic novel was developed in partnership with Marvel. They consulted with an IBD advisory panel consisting of patients...

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2017 Microbiome in Mouse Models Workshop Review — Best Practices

Part III: Best Practices for Study Design This is the third of a three-part recap of Navigating the Challenges of Studying the Microbiome in Mouse Models: Design, Execution and Utility, a sponsored workshop at the 2017 Translational Microbiome Conference. Part I: Participants and Presentations Part II: Microbiome Workshop Topics Part III: Best Practices for Study Design In this Insight, we will summarize the main findings of workshop...

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Alzheimer's Requires Aggressive Funding — and Better Models

More than 5.5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's disease (AD), the sixth leading cause of death among adults in the US. Aggressive research funding and improved animal models of Alzheimer's disease are urgent priorities. Increasing Alzheimer's Research Funding On July 19, 2017, the House Appropriations Committee approved an additional $400 million for Alzheimer's disease research in the fiscal year 2018 budget. $400 million was also approved...

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2017 Microbiome in Mouse Models Workshop Review — Key Topics

Part II: Microbiome Workshop Topics This is the second of a three-part recap of Navigating the Challenges of Studying the Microbiome in Mouse Models: Design, Execution and Utility, a sponsored workshop at the 2017 Translational Microbiome Conference. Part I: Participants and Presentations Part II: Microbiome Workshop Topics Part III: Best Practices for Study Design In this Insight, we recap workshop topics and discussions relating to the use...

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Parkinson's Disease Model with Endogenous LRRK2 Regulation

No single Parkinson's Disease (PD) model fully reproduces the complexity of the disease in humans. Developing an assortment of PD models has been essential for furthering our understanding of, and the development of potential treatments for, the disease. Adding to the arsenal of PD rodent models, in conjunction with The Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF) for Parkinson's Research, a mouse model carrying targeted replacement human LRRK2 G2019S...

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2017 Microbiome in Mouse Models Workshop Review

Part I: Participants and Presentations This is the first of a three-part recap of Navigating the Challenges of Studying the Microbiome in Mouse Models: Design, Execution and Utility, a sponsored workshop at the 2017 Translational Microbiome Conference. Part I: Participants and Presentations Part II: Microbiome Workshop Topics Part III: Best Practices for Study Design Participating Scientists The microbiome workshop was led by Alexander Maue, PhD, director of...

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HIV Drug Efficacy Affected by Microbiome Composition

The metabolism of pharmacological compounds by our inhabitant microbes can have a significant effect on drug efficacy. While the best-known example may be the inactivation of the drug digoxin by gut flora1, Klatt et al. recently demonstrated that an imbalance in the healthy vaginal microbiome impacts the efficacy of a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) drug2. Efficacy of Tenofovir Gel Affected by Vaginal Microbiome Composition Tenofovir is a...

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Modeling Malaria with Humanization and Tissue Engineering

The fight against malaria is hampered by the lack of good animal models. The most dangerous malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, has a complex life cycle involving two hosts: mosquitoes and humans. In humans, the parasite has both a liver stage and a red blood cell stage. Because of its host species specificity, P. falciparum has been challenging to model in vivo, particularly during the liver stage. Humanized...

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