Dr Neil MurrayDr Neil Murray, Chief Executive of RedX Pharma, writes about the company’s recent Regional Growth Fund award.

The spectre of a US President trying to prevent the world’s largest economy plunging over a fiscal cliff dominated headlines at the start of this year, at which point the CEOs of any number of large pharma companies might have considered Obama relatively fortunate.

The challenge posed by drugs going over the patent cliff is part of the modern-day anatomy of big pharma. It cannot be negotiated away with a political quick fix in the small hours of the morning, and has revenue implications that can seem equally apocalyptic to investors.

Redx Pharma was established in 2010 to help meet the enormous challenge of creating the next wave of revenue generators.  In our view, we have only just started to see the industry’s R&D model change. As large pharma reduces its internal research capacity, there is a need for smaller, agile companies like our own to provide new drug programs to fill the pipeline gap that has arisen.  Our focus is on providing a lower risk and faster transition of promising compounds to valuable medicines.

The UK government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF) has recognised the contribution we are making. It has provided in excess of £10m of backing which, along with substantial support from private investors, has helped us establish a subsidiary to develop new cancer drugs, Redx Oncology in Liverpool, and one focused on infectious diseases, Redx Anti-Infectives at Alderley Park, Cheshire.

The latest validation of our approach, RGF backing for a proposed third subsidiary focused on metabolic diseases, has put us in a position to create high value drugs to combat conditions such as heart disease, arthritis and diabetes. Collectively, they represent some of the most defining public health challenges of the developed world.

Our immediate focus is on delivering revenues from partnerships with pharma customers, across our pipeline, helping us to create a sustainable, dynamic business in the North West.

The Regional Growth Fund has made a very real contribution to the development of our business, and its endorsement of our plans has helped us attract substantial private sector investment. This latest award gives us another option as we seek to grow further and position Redx at the forefront of the new R&D model emerging in the industry.