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Public Policy Newsletter Article

San Diego Mayor Tours Biocom Member Companies Working on COVID-19

  • 2020-04-23T15:00:00.000+0000
  • San Diego
  • Author: Melanie Cohn

Following Biocom’s March 24th roundtable discussion with San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and many of our members working on COVID-19, the mayor expressed interest in visiting facilities doing this important work locally. To that end, Biocom public policy staff coordinated two tours for Mayor Faulconer: a virtual visit to Calibr at Scripps Research and an in-person tour of Sorrento Therapeutics.

On April 3rd, the mayor joined Scripps Research and Biocom staff for a Zoom facility walk-through with Dr. Arnab Chatterjee, Calibr’s Vice President of Medicinal Chemistry. The mayor learned about their ReFRAME library, the world’s leading collection of known drugs, comprising over 14,000 compounds that are FDA approved and proven safe for human use. Since the coronavirus outbreak began, Calibr has collaborated with research teams over the world to screen the ReFRAME collection for potential therapies. Of the tour, Mayor Faulconer said, “San Diego’s bioscience community is working nonstop, day and night, to get us through COVID-19… These folks are on the front line and their work could be the light at the end of the tunnel.”

We then organized an in-person tour of Sorrento Therapeutics, a company in UTC that is working on multiple potential therapeutics and vaccines for COVID-19. More information on their efforts can be found here. The mayor was able to see the labs where Sorrento Therapeutics is working to address the virus, while observing distancing protocols.

Following the visit, the mayor said, “Therapeutics and vaccines are what will ultimately stop COVID-19. Labs like Sorrento Therapeutics are working around the clock to make the breakthroughs we need. Some heroes wear capes – these wear lab coats.”