Pfizer to end Alzheimer’s research, cut 300 jobs

Pfizer Inc.’s decision to stop research and development into new neuroscience drugs, including its work in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, will lead to about 300 job cuts.

The move to end the neuroscience-discovery program followed an internal review, the New York-based drugmaker said in an emailed statement Saturday. The job reductions will primarily affect employees at facilities in Cambridge and Andover in Massachusetts, as well as Groton, Connecticut.

Pfizer said it will continue its support of tanezumab, a late-stage pain treatment in development with Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly and Co., and the fibromyalgia drug Lyrica, as well as research into neurological drugs for rare diseases.

Tanezumab has potential to be a game-changer as a non-opioid pain treatment, with blockbuster potential of more than $1 billion in annual sales.

The company also plans to soon start a venture fund committed to neuroscience.

Pfizer is expected to make a presentation Monday at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco, one of the biggest annual meetings in the industry. The drugmaker is currently weighing the future of its consumer-health division, possibly with a sale or spin-off that could bring in billions. The unit had revenue of $3.4 billion in 2016.

Please enable JavaScript to view this content.

Story Continues Below

Editor's note: IBJ is now using a new comment system. Your Disqus account will no longer work on the IBJ site. Instead, you can leave a comment on stories by signing in to your IBJ account. If you have not registered, please sign up for a free account now. Past comments are not currently showing up on stories, but they will be added in the coming weeks. Please note our updated comment policy that will govern how comments are moderated.