Pfizer Shares Software For Biotech Drug Research With Pharma Rivals

Ryan McBride | FierceBiotechIT | June 24, 2013

Pfizer ($PFE) has led the way in an effort to share software and standards for managing data on complex molecules, providing the tech know-how on a precompetitive basis to competitors such as GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK), Roche ($RHHBY) and Bristol-Myers Squibb ($BMY).

Pfizer developed the original technology for the set of applications, which the Pistoia Alliance has packaged under the HELM (Hierarchical Editing Language for Macromolecules) moniker for any qualified groups to implement in their labs. The software tools enable researchers to represent large molecules, which include protein-based drugs such as Amgen's ($AMGN) Enbrel and Roche's Herceptin. Researchers can use the software under an open-source license.

Open-source tactics have become more common in the pharma industry, where industry giants have been joining forces to overcome some thorny technical obstacles that have stymied progress in drug research. [...]