A different type of Pharma

We are inspired by the sea, driven by science, and motivated by patients with serious diseases to improve their lives by delivering novel medicines to them. We intend to continue to be the world leader in marine medicinal discovery, development and innovation.

How did it start?

How did it start?

We did it our way

When we started, people thought our approach was odd. We persevered. We have earned success with a unique approach that we apply with rigor over and over.

“PharmaMar is a unique company in terms of inspiration, focus, and successes”

We did it our way

‘Nature distributed medicine everywhere.’ Pliny, the elder, 74 A.D.

The Atlantic Ocean formed an integral part of life for the Vigo based Fernandez’s family. The sea helped crystalize the idea in Jose Maria Fernandez mind that marine based organisms would prove to have medicinal utility.

The Blue Planet

Based on the facts that the seas cover over 75% of the earth’s surface, and that the biodiversity of the sea is far greater than that on land, the hypothesis was to explore the sea for novel medicines.

Focus, focus, focus

We focused on anti-cancer drugs based on marine invertebrates because they have no immune system and can’t run away and therefore must have some defense mechanisms to have survived evolution.

From seaside to bedside

With these hypotheses PharmaMar was born in 1986. Our founder is an avid scuba diver to this day and he plans to continue exploring, just like PharmaMar continues to with its expeditions, looking for anti-cancer compounds.

3 decades of medical progress

90% of all drugs entering clinical trials fail to gain approval. With a first approval in 2007, and a third drug approved by 2020, our hypothesis and platform technology have been validated. To get 3 drugs approved is something under 1% of biotech companies achieve. We are in the 1%.
We do this for the patients.


Synthetic process for trabectedin discovered              .


Yondelis approved in EU for soft tissue sarcoma          .


Yondelis approved in EU for ovarian cancer                   .


Lurbinectedin first human data presented at ASCO

Yondelis gains USA and Japan approval for sarcoma      .


Aplidin approved in Australia for multiple myeloma      .


Zepzelca obtains FDA approval for small cell lung cancer


Zepzelca approved in UAE, Australia, Singapore, Canada

Our principles and core values


We are motivated to offer hope to patients with unmet medical needs, including in rare disease, and are accountable to patients as well as ourselves to deliver on this.


We are a unique company inspired by marine exploration for the discovery of novel medicines.


We are in an innovation business with the know-how to pursue our objectives, and the commitment to drive optimal outcomes for all our stakeholders.


Our company treats all our stakeholders with respect and integrity.


We are prepared to carry out the development of our products consistently, with rigor to the scientific process, under the dictated specifications.

Our history

PharmaMar founded as a wholly owned subsidiary

PharmaMar USA founded

Synthetic process for trabectedin discovered… Janssen partnership for Yondelis signed

Starts Phase III with synthetic version of trabectedin in ovarian cancer

Yondelis approved in EU for soft tissue sarcoma

Yondelis approved in EU for ovarian cancer

PharmaMar Germany and Italy open

PharmaMar France opens

Lurbinectedin first human data presented at ASCO
Yondelis gains FDA approval for sarcoma; PmDA approves in Japan
Zeltia and PharmaMar complete reverse merger

Aplidin approved in Australia for multiple myeloma
PharmaMar sells Xylazel consumer chemicals business

PharmaMar sells Zelnova consumer chemicals business
Partnership signed with Jazz Pharma for Lurbinectedin

Zepzelca (lurbinectedin) obtains accelerated approval from FDA for USA
Genomica brings Covid19 test to market
Inclusion in IBEX-35 Spanish Stock Market index

Zepzelca approval in UAE, Australia, Singapore, Canada

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