Juvaris Bio wins $9M grant for flu-vaccine adjuvants

Pleasanton, Calif.-based Juvaris BioTherapeutics, a four-year-old biotech developing vaccines and drugs against infectious disease, won a $9 million, five-year grant from the National Institute for Allergies and Infectious Disease. The money will fund collaborative research with Stanford and UC Davis to study adjuvants, which are substances that boost the body’s natural immune response. Adjuvants are often used to enhance the effectiveness of vaccines or to stretch existing supplies, since an adjuvant can reduce the amount of vaccine required to innoculate an individual.

AstraZeneca ups the biotech ante

Now that AstraZeneca has made the bold — or impulsive — decision to snap up MedImmune for $15.6 billion in cash, one big question is whether the U.K. pharmaceutical giant has kicked Big Pharma’s appetite for biotech acquisitions into high gear.