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Politics, Policy & Law

Biotech isn’t tech; M&A isn’t all the same

A report from Rep. Porter highlights the need to educate Congress about the biopharma ecosystem

A report from Rep. Porter highlights the need to educate Congress about the biopharma ecosystem.

Feb 6, 2021 | 1:44 AM GMT

Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.) released a report last week that crystallized two urgent tasks for the biopharma industry: to prevent misconceptions about M&A from becoming accepted as facts, and more broadly, to forge a bipartisan coalition in the new Congress and the Biden administration of individuals who understand and will seek to strengthen the industry’s role in advancing the nation’s health and prosperity.

While Porter will not succeed in halting biopharma M&A, she could insert provisions into legislation that would increase the cost or difficulty of making the deals that animate the industry.

More importantly, her report shows how members of Congress who have little understanding of the life sciences ecosystem often extrapolate from other sectors, especially the tech industry, to craft life sciences policies that could have unintended negative effects on patients and the economy.

Differing conceptions about how the life

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