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.

Deflating the CRISPR/Cas9 Off-Target Controversy

The use of CRISPR/Cas9 has profoundly affected mouse genetics by reducing the cost and the timeline associated with the introduction of mutations in the genome. But is it possible that CRISPR isn't specific enough for the generation of genetically engineered animal models? Since its appearance, the technology has been used to generate thousands of new animal models used in both basic and preclinical research. However, the possibility...

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Mice with Horse Microbiota Validate Health Promoting Diet for Foals

Photo courtesy of F. Lindenberg Animal feed retailer Brogaarden recently launched a new prebiotic diet for foals that can reduce the risk of developing conditions such as Equine Metabolic Syndrome and colitis later in life. The diet works by promoting beneficial gut bacteria, such as Akkermansia muciniphila, in turn inducing regulatory immunity in the foals. The diet's effects were scientifically demonstrated by Industrial PhD Student Frederikke Lindenberg,...

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The Importance of Long QT Syndrome Research

April 17, 2002 was a day of record breaking heat in New York State. The day is very clear in my mind for several reasons; it was my last birthday in my 20s, I had just bought my first house (and was taking the week to paint as I had not planned on the heat), and my niece was rushed to the hospital after an episode of...

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Immunogenic peptide from PSF1 identified as potential new cancer vaccine target

Although much of the press for immuno-oncology (IO) has focused on checkpoint inhibitors, researchers are exploring many other types of IO therapeutics. Other types of IO therapies under development include bi-specific antibodies, CAR-T cells, and cancer vaccines. Researchers at Shionogi and Osaka University recently published a paper1 describing identification of a new tumor antigen with the potential for targeting via a cancer vaccine. Previous research showed that...

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The Effect of Gut Bacteria on Bone Health Cannot be Generalized

Previously, a number of different studies using germ-free (GF) mice have indicated that the gut microbiota regulates bone density. However, the results have been conflicting. Reports demonstrate both beneficial and detrimental effects of the microbiota on bone health. A new study published in mSphere in January 2018 positions itself right in between the conflicting previous studies. The researchers demonstrated no effect of different human and murine microbiotas...

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Tauopathy Alzheimer's Disease Models Yield Contrasting Results

In a recent Alzheimer's Research and Therapy article, scientists described failing to elicit beneficial effects from a tau-directed antibody therapy while evaluating its efficacy in the Tg4510 mouse, an Alzheimer's disease (AD) model with a tamoxifen-controlled transgene expressing P301L mutant tau. The results contrast prior successes reported with the antibody therapy the researchers were testing. The therapeutic, a tau oligomer-specific monoclonal antibody (TOMA), was reported to rescue...

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Selecting Translatable NASH Animal Models

The global obesity epidemic has pushed associated liver diseases to the forefront of research, yet no existing animal model of NASH or NAFLD fully recapitulates its clinical presentation. This presents a challenge for effective study design: how do you select the most appropriate and translatable animal model for studying the pathophysiology of NASH? Causes of NASH in Humans Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) affects 30-40% of US...

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2018 Microbiome Conferences

Looking for a microbiome meeting or conference to attend in 2018? The Translational Microbiome Research Forum (TMRF) lists thirty-two 2018 conferences, so far, and updates their event page upon announcement of new meetings. A quick survey of the events shows eighteen taking place in the US or Canada, twelve in Europe and Israel, and two in Singapore. Twenty-six of these microbiome conferences are general-interest forums, focusing on...

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Webinar Review: Immuno-oncology and the Microbiome

In a recent webinar, Dr. Benjamin Cuiffo of Biomodels addressed the role of microbiome in preclinical immuno-oncology research. There is growing evidence that microbial imbalance (dysbiosis) is associated with many illnesses, including inflammation, autoimmune disease, and even cancer — but many researchers fail to account for its impact in preclinical study design. If you missed it, here's a summary of the key developments discussed during Dr. Cuiffo's...

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Microbiome Articles in the Top 5 of Articles Read in 2017

The Translational Scientist Journal announced the top 5 articles of 2017 from their publication. Two of the five articles examine the microbiome; further supporting its stature in life sciences research. Microbiome research continues to be a popular discussion topic for articles, conferences, and in the lay press. One of the microbiome focused articles is Exploring the Microbiome — with Mice. Taconic Biosciences' Director of Microbiome Products and...

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