GSK, Vir Use CRISPR, Artificial Intelligence to Find COVID-19 Cure

PharmaNewsIntelligence | April 07, 2020

GSK is partnering with Vir Biotechnology to use CRISPR and artificial intelligence to identify anti-viral compounds that can treat coronaviruses, including COVID-19. GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Vir Biotechnology recently announced a collaboration to enhance COVID-19 drug discovery through the use of CRISPR and artificial intelligence.For more coronavirus updates, visit our resource page, updated twice daily by Xtelligent Healthcare Media. The partnership will initially focus on accelerating the development of specific antibody candidates using Vir’s monoclonal antibody platform technology and GSK’s expertise in functional genomics. Vir’s platforms, VIR-7831 and VIR-7832, have already shown a similarity for the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and researchers believe they show great potential to neutralize the SARS-CoV-2 sequence.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Indivior To Acquire Opiant Pharmaceuticals

Indivior | November 21, 2022

Indivior PLC and Opiant Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced that the companies have entered into a definitive agreement under which Indivior will acquire Opiant for an upfront consideration of $20.00 per share, in cash plus up to $8.00 per share in contingent value rights that may become payable in the event that certain net revenue milestones are achieved during the relevant seven-year period by OPNT003 after its approval and launch. The transaction has been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of each company. "Our work in combatting addiction has never been more critical, with overdose deaths in the United States occurring at near record numbers1," said Mark Crossley, Chief Executive Officer of Indivior. "Opiant's portfolio of product candidates is an excellent strategic fit that diversifies and strengthens our offerings, while Indivior's strong commercial capabilities are expected to propel a combined product pipeline with the potential to help patients along a continuum from substance use disorder and rescue to recovery. The combination with Opiant will provide Indivior with one of the most comprehensive and relevant treatment platforms to address the ongoing U.S. opioid and overdose epidemic and extends our leadership position in addiction treatments. We look forward to working with Opiant's talented team as we undertake our shared mission of changing patients' lives through access to life-transforming treatment for substance use disorders." Acquisition Strengthens and Extends Indivior's Position as a Leader in Addiction Treatment "We are pleased to have reached an agreement that reflects the great potential Opiant has created with OPNT003 and our pipeline of medicines. This transaction combines Opiant with an organization that shares our patient-focused mindset, and we believe creates immediate value for patients, our employees and our stockholders. It will enable us to leverage Indivior's global scale, commercial strength and scientific expertise to accelerate our mission to create best-in-class medicines for the treatment of substance use disorders and drug overdose." Roger Crystal, M.D., Opiant's President and Chief Executive Officer Opiant is a biopharmaceutical company developing treatments for addiction and drug overdose leveraging intranasal and injectable delivery technologies. Opiant contributed to the development of the formulation of NARCAN® Nasal Spray, a treatment to reverse opioid overdose. In addition to OPNT003, nasal nalmefene, the pipeline includes OPNT002, nasal naltrexone, which is currently in a Phase II trial to assess its potential as a treatment for alcohol drinking and cravings, and OPNT004, a CB-1 antagonist in preclinical development as a potential injectable treatment for acute cannabinoid overdose ("ACO"). OPNT003 is an investigational opioid overdose reversal agent that Opiant has been developing alongside a worsening opioid crisis, driven by the increased prevalence of synthetic opioids, such as illicit fentanyl. These powerful drugs are responsible for the surge of overdose deaths in the United States (103,000-plus overdose deaths reported in the latest annual period, of which over 75% were driven by opioids, mainly fentanyl and synthetic opioids1). OPNT003 is designed to be used by non-healthcare individuals and delivered intranasally. Observations from multiple clinical studies reinforce its potential rapid onset and long duration of action. Opiant received FDA Fast Track Designation for OPNT003 in November 2021 and is expected to complete its New Drug Application submission for OPNT003 with the FDA in the fourth quarter of 2022. Subject to approval by the FDA, anticipated approval for a fast-track application is third quarter 2023, with launch in the United States expected in the ensuing months. About Indivior Indivior is a global pharmaceutical company working to help change patients' lives by developing medicines to treat addiction and serious mental illnesses. Our vision is that all patients around the world will have access to evidence-based treatment for the chronic conditions and co-occurring disorders of substance use disorder. Indivior is dedicated to transforming SUD from a global human crisis to a recognized and treated chronic disease. Building on its global portfolio of OUD treatments, Indivior has a pipeline of product candidates designed to both expand on its heritage in this category and potentially address other chronic conditions and co-occurring disorders of SUD, including alcohol use disorder and cannabis use disorder.

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PHARMACY MARKET, PHARMA TECH

Prescryptive Health Partners with Lilly on First-to-Market Value-Based Program to Stabilize Insulin Pricing

Prescryptive Health | December 16, 2022

Prescryptive Health, a healthcare technology company on a mission to rewrite the script for the U.S. pharmaceutical market, today announced a partnership with Eli Lilly and Company on a new and first-to-market subscription model to help lower costs for people who pay for their Lilly insulin through their employer-sponsored benefits. Through a flat, per-member, per-month subscription fee, employers can offer insulin to their employees with predictable, affordable, and transparent costs. This unique value-based program is designed to create price stability related to insulin utilization, with Lilly refunding a portion of the subscription fee if an employer's total medical spend increases over time for their employees who live with diabetes. "We are proud to partner with Lilly on this unique and first-to-market value-based program. This solution challenges the traditional drug pricing model and reduces the burden on employers who sponsor pharmacy benefits. The result is that it insulates employers against increased drug prices and aligns interests to focus on patient access and health outcomes." Chris Blackley, Prescryptive Health CEO This new program can help address controversial rebates in the pharmacy benefit manager pricing model and will be available through Prescryptive free of any margin or price mark-up, further reducing the cost to employers, health plans, and ultimately healthcare consumers. Additionally, the program offers opportunities for employers to supply insulin at lower costs, or at no cost, to their employees. Added benefits for employers participating in the program include the Prescryptive mobile experience that supports patient engagement and adherence for diabetes care. "In the U.S., more than 34 million people have diabetes, and some people who have employer-based insurance still need affordability solutions to ensure they don't pay too much out-of-pocket for their insulin," said Mike Mason, President, Lilly Diabetes. "At Lilly, we strive to provide new solutions to help lower costs at the pharmacy, including partnering with Prescryptive Health to ensure people with diabetes have access to affordable options to help them reach their treatment goals." According to the American Diabetes Association people with diagnosed diabetes spend about 2.3 times more on medical costs than those without diabetes, which impacts not only every individual patient and plan member, but also employers who sponsor their benefits coverage. Additionally, costs related to the condition include $3.3 billion in increased absenteeism. About Prescryptive Health Prescryptive Health is a healthcare technology company delivering solutions that empower consumers. Prescryptive's secure, mobile-first products connect consumers, pharmacists, and employers, ultimately providing people with the information they need to make informed decisions and take control of their health.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS, PHARMA TECH

Xtalpi Partners with Singapore's Drug Discovery Platform to Find Better Cancer Treatments

XtalPi Inc. | December 29, 2022

One of the pioneering pharmaceutical technology companies - XtalPi, powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and automation, has recently announced a strategic collaboration with Singapore's national platform for drug discovery and development, the Experimental Drug Development Centre (EDDC), which is hosted by the Agency for Science, Technology, and Research of Singapore (A*STAR). The goal of this partnership is to find novel treatment candidates for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). “According to Research and Markets, the size of the global market for NSCLC treatments will surpass USD 20 billion by 2027” Lung cancer is the second-most prevalent cancer worldwide and the leading cause of cancer-related mortality. NSCLC accounts for more than 80% of all lung cancer occurrences, while its incidence continues to rise worldwide. Despite growing interest and investment in drug research, there is a substantial unmet demand for effective targeted therapeutic alternatives for NSCLC patients to improve outcomes. In this partnership, EDDC and XtalPi will work together to find promising candidates against an NSCLC target chosen by EDDC. XtalPi will use its AI technology, automation platform, and expert domain knowledge. It will also use quantum physics and an AI-driven platform to create and test millions of molecules for the De-novo drug design. Iterations will be used in its robotics-powered synthesis and testing lab to confirm and improve the predicted top-performing molecules with desirable drug properties. EDDC will give helpful information and data about the new NSCLC target, which will speed up the process of finding new drugs and carry the program forward. XtalPi said in a statement that it is delighted to work with EDDC. It intends to help people all over the world by using AI and automation to improve the speed, size, variety, and success rate of drug research and development. In line with this, EDDC stated that it is excited to collaborate with XtalPi to translate science and research into practical and targeted cancer therapies. Furthermore, EDDC is confident that this collaboration will accelerate the development of much-needed targeted therapies for NSCLC patients due to XtalPi's experience in AI and automation technologies. About XtalPi XtalPi is a quantum physics-based, AI-powered drug R&D firm aiming to improve the speed, scale, novelty, and success rate of drug discovery. To meet the needs of its clients and partners, the company has offices in China and the United States. Frost & Sullivan cites the company as one of the world's first AI-powered drug R&D companies, with an iterative feedback loop between dry and wet lab capabilities.

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