Pandemics have killed at least a half billion people over the past two millennia. Today a
new plague, COVID-19, is stalking humanity. But in the age of biotechnology, humanity
is no longer defenseless. Biotechnology in the Time of COVID-19 is a collection of stories
about the biotechnology industry—its purpose, its people and how it has risen to battle
the COVID-19 virus—told by forty-seven leaders of that industry in their own words.
The industry is an ecosystem of scientists, doctors, patients, entrepreneurs, investors, bankers,
analysts and reporters, all committed to treating and curing disease. It has been built over the
past forty years, producing medical advances at an electrifying rate. As the COVID-19
pandemic emerged, within just two months hundreds of companies had pivoted to apply their
technologies to combat the virus.
The contributors to this book offer inside views of this seminal industry, historical and
personal perspectives, lessons learned, and looks into the future. Diverse as these leaders are,
they are united by their conviction that science and medicine will light humanity’s way to
greater health and longevity than it has ever known.
The editor royalties and a portion of publisher revenues will be donated to two nonprofits
focused on rare disease research: Global Genes (globalgenes.org) and The Institute for Life
Changing Medicines (lifechangingmedicines.org).
“Common themes resonate through all the essays: cooperation, passion for mission,
acceptance of challenge, empathy for victims and an optimism derived from and tempered by
experience. This is a timely miracle of a book of essays from an impressive swath of
international biotech leaders.” —Joshua Boger, Ph.D., Founder and Former CEO of
Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated
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Dr. Jeremy M. Levin is Chairman and CEO of Ovid Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:OVID), a
company whose mission is to bring treatment to patients with rare neurological conditions.
Dr. Levin is concurrently the chairman of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO).
Prior to founding Ovid, Dr. Levin was president and CEO of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries
Ltd., (TLV: TEVA) Before Teva, Dr. Levin was member of the executive committee Bristol-
Myers Squibb Company (NYSE: BMY). In that capacity he was the architect of and
implemented the String of Pearls Strategy, which transformed Bristol. Dr. Levin joined BMY
from Novartis (SWX: NOVN) where he was global head of strategic alliances. He has served
on the board of directors of various public and private biopharmaceutical companies and is
currently on the board of directors of Lundbeck (OMX: LUN).
Dr. Levin was voted as one of the twenty-five most influential biotechnology leaders by
Fierce Biotech and one of the top three biotechnology CEOs in 2020 by The Healthcare
Technology Report. He is the recipient of the Albert Einstein Award for Leadership in Life
Sciences and the B’nai B’rith Award for Distinguished Achievement.
He has practiced medicine at university hospitals in England, South Africa, and Switzerland.
Dr. Levin earned his bachelor’s degree in zoology and a master’s degree and doctorate in
chromatin structure, at the University of Oxford, and thereafter his medical and surgical
degrees from the University of Cambridge where he won the Kermode Prize for his work on
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