Medical discovery remains one of the most difficult types of innovation in the world, with the failure rate from target discovery to approval of a new drug exceeding 95 percent. Although both difficult and expensive, success in this arena translates into much-needed cures and medical advances that improve the lives of millions. One way to speed up the discovery of safe, effective medicines is by creating a new model of investment that streamlines the early stages of research and development.
On Monday, the TVM Life Science Ventures VII officially closed, presenting an important opportunity to take a look at this unique collaboration between TVM Capital Life Science and Lilly. An independently managed venture capital fund in Montreal, the TVM Fund looks to finance and access innovation by supporting project focused companies (PFCs) in reaching clinical proof of concept efficiently and cost effectively. The PFC model aims to maximize efficiency through rapid, lean, high-quality clinical development.
This type of relationship between major pharmaceutical companies and venture capital firms can open new and urgently needed avenues for success in life science innovation. As an added benefit, Lilly established a Canadian unit of Chorus in Montréal. Chorus Canada works with development service providers across the province and elsewhere to offer development services to project-focused companies based primarily in Québec.
Ultimately, the TVM Fund represents a major investment that will enhance the entire life sciences ecosystem in Québec and Canada overall, but the potential effects are even more widespread. Diseases like Alzheimer’s have major unmet needs that require significant R&D investment to meet them. By streamlining the innovation process, this collaborative investment has the potential to bring to market the life-saving treatments needed to help people around the world live longer, healthier lives.