CBF Honors Groundbreaking Medical Contributions by Women Researchers

Monthly Newsletter

CBF Honors Groundbreaking Medical Contributions by Women Researchers

March 2020

CBF Honors Groundbreaking Medical Contributions by Women Researchers

As Women’s History Month comes to a close, the California Biotechnology Foundation has been highlighting the accomplishments of women who have broken barriers in the sciences, medicine, and biotechnology. Below are just some of the many women who continue making history in the life sciences industry.

Kizzmekia S. Corbett, PhD is a world-renowned vaccine developer who helped develop the COVID-19 vaccine and is now using her platform to help address “vaccine inquisitiveness.”

Sofia Elizondo is the Co-Founder and Chief Operations Officer of BrightseedBio, a California biotech startup that utilizes artificial intelligence to detect plant-based nutritional information bioactives that advance human health.

Jennifer Doudna, PhD is one of the world’s leading scientists in CRISPR gene editing and in 2020 won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for her work in this field. Learn more about her new program, “Women in Enterprising Science” which aims to enhance gender equity in bio-entrepreneurship.

Beverly Griffin, PhD worked to improve the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and raise awareness of children in Africa living with the disease.

Dr. Rita Levi-Montalcini, MD discovered how bodies grow cells and build nerves. She was awarded the 1986 Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine for the discovery of nerve growth factor which led to major advancements in dementia and cancer research.


Michelle McMurry-Heath, MD is the President and CEO of BIO and has worked for years to bring cutting edge medical innovation to patients of diverse backgrounds.

Magda Marquet, PhD a biochemical engineer and an entrepreneur who has co-founded multiple life sciences companies to great success. Marquet has spent decades working on DNA vaccines as well as treatments to address mental health.

Dr. Padmanee Sharma, MD, PhD is a leading figure in oncology, specializing in renal, bladder and prostate cancer, having been head investigator on many clinical cancer research trials.

Learn more about the immeasurable contributions women researchers are making in the health and lives of people across the globe.

ICYMI: DMHC Report Shows Health Plan Profit and Non-Medical Expenses Far Exceed Rx Expenditures

The California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) released a report on December 27, 2021 concluding that prescription drug expenditures are nearly the same as they were in 2017.

According to the 2021 DMHC Report, “Manufacturer drug rebates increased by almost 19.2% in 2020 and totaled approximately $1.437 billion compared to $1.205 billion in 2019. These rebates helped mitigate some of the overall impact of rising prescription drug prices by reducing total health plan premiums by 1.8% in 2020.”

Health Premium Expenditures Between 2017 to 2020

While total health plan premiums increased by 18.4% between 2017 and 2020, the amount of premium dollars that went to health plan profits increased by 108%. This is due to the fact that the California premium dollar went to health plans for non-medical expenses and profit rather than prescription drugs.

Health Plans are Spending Less Premium Dollars on Rx Now Than in 2017
DMHC found that, in 2020, more of the California premium dollar went to non-medical expenses than it did prescription drugs. In fact, after accounting for rebates, health plans spent almost $5.1 billion more toward non-medical expenses than for prescription drugs in 2020.

To read the full report, visit DMHC website HERE.

For more information, contact Patty Cooper with the California Biotechnology Foundation at 916-764-2434 or [email protected].