Each new technology has a story behind it. On Dec. 5, our Xchange Forum will offer a behind-the-scenes look at how some of them aim to transform healthcare.

Xconomy’s San Francisco Biotech: The Next Generation, will feature three Bay Area companies, each of them tackling a different challenge in the life sciences. RDMD, for example, is hardly alone in trying to make its mark in rare diseases. But CEO and co-founder Nancy Yu will explain how a Silicon Valley hackathon and techniques from information technology led to her startup’s efforts to find new drugs for rare diseases.

Alzheimer’s disease continues to vex scientists, defying the attempts of drug companies to treat it. Much of their research has focused on the buildup of beta-amyloid protein. Cortexyme is taking a different tack by targeting bacteria in the brain. CEO and co-founder Casey Lynch will talk about how this approach could treat Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative disorders.

And finally, Allogene Therapeutics is among the hottest new biotech companies in one of the hottest areas of research: cancer immunotherapy. The company broke onto the scene with $300 million in funding in April, and then raised $300 million more in its October IPO. Allogene is testing “next generation” treatments that could offer advantages over cell therapies that have recently entered the market.

Arie Belldegrun and David Chang, the two executives leading Allogene, are known for their work at Kite Pharma, which won FDA approval for its cell therapy last year. At our Xchange Forum, they’ll be joined by UCSF scientist Wendell Lim in a discussion about the new company and its approach to treating cancer.

If the stories of RDMD, Cortexyme, and Allogene pique your curiosity, come join us at UCSF Mission Bay. You can view the full agenda for San Francisco Biotech: The Next Generation here.  We hope to see you on Dec. 5.

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