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Carroll School of Management

Dr. Marijn Dekkers

Chairman, Bayer AG

Excerpt from remarks to Boston College’s Chief Executives’ Club of Boston 

September 19, 2012

TAKEAWAY: On the verge of opportunity

I’m actually personally convinced that we are again at the verge of tremendous breakthrough opportunity in innovation in pharmaceutical research. And I think this is driven—and maybe I’m a little biased saying that with a history at Thermo Fisher Scientific—but there has been tremendous progress in analytical tools, analytical analysis for the pharmaceutical industry, which allows us to much better understand at a cellular level what is happening, and what is driving certain disease patterns at a biochemical level.

I think the best example of that is the genome sequencing project, you’ve all heard of that. Twelve years ago, the human genome was sequenced. It cost $3 billion to do so and it took 12 years. Well now, the sequence can happen in just a few days for around $2,000. It’s really an illustration of the progress that has been made, and this type of insight will allow us to, at a very detailed level, understand what’s going on in cells, as I said, and then create appropriate therapies around this.