Alexion bets $1.4B on Portola and its laggard bleeding drug Andexxa

Fiercepharma | May 05, 2020

Alexion has made no secret of its plan to diversify beyond its blockbuster rare disease franchise. Now, the company has taken a flier out on a disappointing drug that targets severe bleeding—and it's hoping to parlay its hospital contacts into a sales boost that'll appease unruly investors. Alexion agreed to buy Portola Pharmaceuticals and its sole approved medicine, anticoagulant reversal agent Andexxa, in a deal valued at around $1.4 billion, the drugmakers said Monday. That's $18 per share in cash—a 131% premium on Portola's Monday closing price of $7.76 per share. The Portola buyout will take Alexion beyond a rare-disease portfolio dominated by blockbuster C5-inhibitor Soliris and follow-up drug Ultomiris. The centerpiece of the deal is a bleeding reversal agent, Andexxa, designed for patients using two common anticoagulant drugs, Xarelto and Eliquis. So far, Andexxa has delivered disappointing sales, but Alexion still sees promise—even if it'll take a while for that promise to pay off.

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Get your head in the game with a free download of the Pharma R&D Annual Review 2019 infographic from Informa Pharma Intelligence. This year’s look at the key players and reigning champs of R&D uses a sports theme to present its critical data on the current state of pharma R&D. Using stats from Pharmaprojects, part of the Citeline suite of intelligence solutions, this graphic look at the current state of pharma R&D is a winner, giving you snapshot view of:  R&D pipeline size by year, 2001 – 2019, Total number of pipeline projects and their growth rate , The 2019 pipeline by phase , Pharma R&D leaderboards (top companies, therapy groups, and diseases and indications)

Spotlight

Get your head in the game with a free download of the Pharma R&D Annual Review 2019 infographic from Informa Pharma Intelligence. This year’s look at the key players and reigning champs of R&D uses a sports theme to present its critical data on the current state of pharma R&D. Using stats from Pharmaprojects, part of the Citeline suite of intelligence solutions, this graphic look at the current state of pharma R&D is a winner, giving you snapshot view of:  R&D pipeline size by year, 2001 – 2019, Total number of pipeline projects and their growth rate , The 2019 pipeline by phase , Pharma R&D leaderboards (top companies, therapy groups, and diseases and indications)

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Simulations Plus Enters New Collaboration to Enhance Machine Learning Models for Ionization Constants (pKa)

Simulations Plus, Inc. | August 08, 2022

Simulations Plus, Inc. a leading provider of modeling and simulation software and services for pharmaceutical safety and efficacy, announced it has entered a new collaboration with a large pharmaceutical company to extend the industry’s top-rated machine learning models for the prediction of ionization constants (pKa) in the ADMET Predictor® platform. In this collaboration, the partner company will contribute tens of thousands of proprietary pKa measurements. The team at Simulations Plus will aim to leverage the expansive databases to improve the accuracy of predictions, and extend the chemical coverage space, using its novel machine learning and atomic descriptor calculation methods. “The ionization of molecules in water impacts nearly all properties driving the absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination processes which occur in vivo and determine whether a molecule can be turned into a drug. We identified early the importance of accurately, and rapidly, predicting this information using machine learning approaches and were fortunate to benefit from government grants and other collaborations over the years to develop novel 2D pKa models which have consistently outperformed other software and are on par with the accuracy of the best computationally intensive ab initio methods. This new partnership will enhance our current approaches and further distinguish ADMET Predictor as the preeminent property prediction platform in the drug discovery space. We value the trust and confidence our partner has in the people and technologies at Simulations Plus, and our team is looking forward to working with them to achieve our mutual goals.” Dr. Robert Fraczkiewicz, Research Fellow and project lead “The surging popularity of our pKa models and associated ionization-related property predictions, coupled with the seamless integration with the GastroPlus® platform in our high-throughput pharmacokinetic simulation technology, have contributed to the accelerated adoption of ADMET Predictor at the interface between discovery and development,” added Dr. Eric Jamois, director for key accounts and strategic alliances. “This new collaborative effort will combine the strengths of both companies and result in significant advancements for predictive modeling. Simulations Plus ensures that improvements made to ADMET Predictor are available for all clients to apply to their research activities, and we continue to invite future collaborations which benefit our entire user community and, most importantly, the patients that we serve.” About Simulations Plus Serving clients worldwide for more than 25 years, Simulations Plus is a leading provider in the biosimulation market providing software and consulting services supporting drug discovery, development, research, and regulatory submissions. We offer solutions that bridge machine learning, physiologically based pharmacokinetics, quantitative systems pharmacology/toxicology, and population PK/PD modeling approaches. Our technology is licensed and applied by major pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and regulatory agencies worldwide. Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) We focus our Environmental, Social, and Governance efforts where we can have the most positive impact. To learn more about our latest initiatives and priorities, please visit our website to read our ESG Report.

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Curia and Replicate Bioscience Enter Strategic Collaboration to Create Groundbreaking Development Platform for Self-Replicating RNA (srRNA)

Curia | June 10, 2022

Curia, formerly AMRI, a leading contract research, development and manufacturing organization, and Replicate Bioscience, a company pioneering ways to prevent drug resistance in cancer and to treat autoimmune and inflammatory disorders and other diseases using self-replicating RNA (srRNA), today announced that they will collaborate on a robust development platform for Replicate’s srRNA therapeutics. As part of the collaboration, Curia’s experienced process development team will support the GMP production of Replicate Bioscience’s srRNA vectors up to eight-liter scale (8L), which can be used in Phase 1 through pivotal clinical trials. Curia’s global mRNA development and manufacturing facility is ISO-13485 certified and located near Boston, Massachusetts. This facility also supports innovators engaged in vaccine and other mRNA therapy development and manufacture through Phase 2 and 3, including GMP assays. Additional Curia facilities support manufacture of srRNA through commercial production scales. “Replicate’s approach to srRNA is unique, in that we create our own virally-derived synthetic vectors to customize srRNAs to deliver specific proteins,” said Replicate Co-founder and Chief Development Officer Andrew Geall, Ph.D., who previously has set up srRNA CMC frameworks for companies including Novartis, Synthetic Genomics, and Precision Nanosystems. “This customization has important therapeutic. advantages—versatility of application, lower dosing, and longer duration of therapeutic effect compared to other RNA modalities—but requires built-for-purpose processes to solve the challenges of manufacturing longer RNAs. Curia’s unprecedented expertise in process development and end-to-end integration of longer RNAs makes them a perfect partner for us as we transition from research into clinical development and the production of our srRNA for trials in patients.” “The manufacture of these longer mRNAs is more technically challenging than non-replicating mRNAs and to date we have succeeded with mRNAs up to 16,000 bases. Curia’s platform offers versatility and streamlined manufacturing times that can handle such complex molecules. Our collaboration with Replicate Bioscience is enabling us to create entirely new methods of manufacturing longer RNAs. We have built our platform from the ground up, using our combined experience in biologics and chemistry to create end-to-end solutions covering mRNA synthesis, lipid synthesis, formulation, and liquid nanoparticle fill-finish. We are proud to apply our capabilities and expertise to support the Replicate Bioscience team and its innovative approach.” Norman Garceau, Ph.D., Vice President, Global R&D Technology, Curia About Curia Curia, formerly AMRI, is a leading contract research, development and manufacturing organization providing products and services from R&D through commercial manufacturing to pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical customers. Curia’s 3,700 employees at 29 locations across the U.S., Europe and Asia help its customers advance from curiosity to cure. Learn more at CuriaGlobal.com. About Replicate Bioscience Replicate Bioscience, an ATP company, is designing and delivering srRNA immunotherapies to revolutionize the practice of medicine and improve and save lives. Replicate applies advanced srRNA technology in its work to prevent drug resistance in cancers. The company is also developing srRNA injections for sustained therapeutic protein expression to treat autoimmune and inflammatory disorders and other conditions. Replicate believes that srRNA will bring about the next big breakthroughs in RNA therapeutics and is working to realize the promise of srRNA for all patients.

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DiMe Releases Toolkits to Improve Sensor Data Integration and Power Better, Faster Global Healthcare and Research

Digital Medicine Society | July 18, 2022

Today, the Digital Medicine Society released the Sensor Data Integrations Toolkits, four comprehensive toolkits to guide data producers, processors, and consumers to use the influx of data from the increased use of wearables and digital sensing products at scale. These resources are based on the Sensor Data Integrations project, comprised of healthcare leaders from Amazon Web Services Oracle, the Moffitt Cancer Center, Takeda, the US Department of Veterans Affairs and more. These toolkits will help realize the promise of sensor generated data to drive better decisions, faster, to improve healthcare delivery and research. The project team will conduct a demo of the toolkits during a live launch event on July 18 at 10:30 am ET, featuring Micky Tripathi, the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology at the US Department of Health and Human Services. The surge of data from sensor technologies is far outpacing the industry's ability to collect, store, analyze, protect, and use this data effectively for patient care and research. The number of US patients using remote patient monitoring devices is expected to surpass 70 million by 2025. Between 2022 and 2028, the global market for wearable technology is expected to grow around 18.5 percent, reaching $380.5 billion. The number of unique digital endpoints being used in industry sponsored trials of new medical products increased by over 950% between October 2019 and May 2022. The number of sponsors using these products in medical product development increased from 12 to 96 in the same timespan. And while the ability to discern high-quality sensor data suitable for clinical decision making is increasing rapidly, the ability to access these data is constrained by a current dependence on individual point solutions. "Sensor generated data, captured during people's daily lives, offer the opportunity to redefine how we measure health and disease. This opportunity powers the possibility of using high quality, high resolution flows of data to reimagine our approach to healthcare and research, leveraging more complete information to improve individual clinical decisions, decisions about the effectiveness of new medical products, and broader policy and public health decisions. DiMe's new Sensor Data Integrations Toolkits provide action-oriented resources to help data producers, processors, and consumers come together to create a sensor data ecosystem suitable for scale." DiMe CEO Jennifer Goldsack AWS has contributed customer feedback and technical expertise to ensure the toolkit meets the needs of today's modern healthcare system. "Across every industry, we see companies trying to accelerate their path to the cloud," said Lita Sands, Head of Solutions Life Sciences at AWS. "Timelines are getting quicker while the data collected is increasing exponentially – there is a clear and significant need for how to effectively and securely collect and use this information at scale. DiMe's new toolkits are a lifeline to organizations working with sensor data. They offer a comprehensive starting point for data producers, processors, and consumers to help build an integrated pipeline to support better and faster decision making." The development of these toolkits builds on DiMe's previous pre-competitive initiatives, such as The Playbook, the essential guide for developing and deploying digital clinical measures to advance patient care, clinical research, and public health. The Sensor Data Integrations Toolkits go further to ensure that high quality sensor data can be used at scale to improve patient care and speed efficient medical product development. The DiMe community is currently working on additional projects related to taking digitally generated data to scale and will be releasing additional resources over the coming months. DiMe is not only committed to creating and disseminating new digital health approaches and tools, but also sharing user experiences with the broader community. We encourage Sensor Data Integrations Toolkits users to contribute to Dime's "Resources in Action" case study hub by sharing how you are using resources to further the safe, effective, equitable, and ethical use of digital medicine to redefine healthcare and improve human health. The leading organizations from across the global healthcare, research, and digital health innovation sectors that collaborated with DiMe to create these open-access resources are AWS, Elevance Health, Evidation, US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Human First, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Medable, Moffitt Cancer Center, Open mHealth, Oracle, Savvy, Takeda, and US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). About the Digital Medicine Society DiMe is a global non-profit and the professional home for all members of the digital medicine community. Together, we tackle the toughest digital medicine challenges, develop clinical-quality resources on a technology timeline, and deliver these actionable resources to the field via open-source channels and educational programs. Join us to advance the ethical, effective, equitable, and safe use of digital medicine to redefine healthcare and improve lives.

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