AZs asthma and diabetes drugs get label boosts in EU

Pharmaphorum | July 01, 2019

Two of AstraZenecas most important drugs have received a boost, after European regulators backed a pen allowing people to inject themselves with respiratory drug Fasenra, and agreed that cardiovascular benefits data could be added to the label of diabetes drug Forxiga. The European Medicines Agency’s CHMP regulatory committee gave a positive opinion to add a self-administration option for asthma injection Fasenra (benralizumab), based on a new delivery method as a pre-filled, single-use auto-injector. Fasenra already has a convenience advantage over two rivals from the same class, GlaxoSmithKline’s Nucala (mepolizumab) and Teva’s rival Cinqaero (reslizumab) as it is given every eight weeks, after the first three doses administered that are four weeks apart. Both Nucala and Cinqaero, which are also interleukin-5 inhibitors, are injected every four weeks. Following the CHMP’s nod, the drug’s label can be changed without need for confirmation from the European Commission. AstraZeneca expects a regulatory decision by the FDA on self-administration and the new pre-filled, single-use auto-injector device in the second half of 2019. Fasenra is currently approved as an add-on maintenance treatment for severe eosinophilic asthma in the US, EU, Japan and other countries. However, in May last year AZ said Fasenra had failed in a phase 3 trial in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), saying it did not provide a statistically significant reduction in exacerbations, a blow to its development in this other indication. NICE has also restricted its funding for NHS patients. The positive opinion for self-administration and the Fasenra pen is supported by the phase 3 GREGALE and GRECO trials, and the phase 1 AMES trial, respectively. The safety and tolerability of Fasenra in these trials were consistent with the known profile of the medicine.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Adalvo Partners With SK Pharma to Create Arphio, a New Business Entity Dedicated Solely to Orphan and Rare Disease Medicines

Adalvo | March 01, 2022

Adalvo, the leading global B2B pharmaceutical company, is thrilled to announce the recent establishment of a new entity ArphioTM a venture initiated in close collaboration with SK Pharma. Together with our new partner, we are developing a powerhouse, solely dedicated to orphan drugs with the intention of improving accessibility of vital treatments, to patients suffering from rare diseases and unmet medical needs. ArphioTM will operate as an independent entity, focusing on rare disease detection, market access and supply of orphan drugs, targeting the EU and ROW regions. ArphioTM has a unique understanding on orphan products and their epidemiology data and unique characteristics. The aim of this venture is to expand access to vital treatments and continue to develop technological capabilities and expertise, while maintaining a patient-centric approach with the possibility of relying on state-of-the art novel technology including worldwide data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. Arphio is founded by pharmaceutical professionals with expertise covering all major therapeutic areas and pharmaceutical forms in various parts of the globe. The company is focused on rare disease detection, market access and the supply of orphan drugs internationally. Arphio is powered by DrugsIntel (DI), a data science powerhouse focusing on the aggregation, unleashing, processing, unification and deployment of pharmaceutical data covering over 75 countries, and over 6,000 sources. This intelligence tools ensure the successful launch of orphan drugs in the market of operation, based on DI’s unique methodology of these Six factors and Pillars. This stand-alone market player will cover all services and functions ranging from medical, market access, regulatory, direct sales, and marketing activities. ArphioTM proudly boasts of strictly following ethics, compliance, accessibility, and corporate governance. There are over 300 million people living with one or more of over 7,000 identified rare diseases around the world, each supported by family, friends, and caregivers. Currently, only about 5% of orphan disorders can be managed with an approved treatment. It is estimated that it takes about seven years and visits to 10 different doctors for a patient to receive a proper diagnostic of an orphan condition. At ArphioTM, fueled by our passion to improve people’s lives, we will apply innovative technologies to provide effective treatments for people with orphan diseases. Anil Okay, General Manager at Adalvo comments: “We are thrilled to be partnering with SK Pharma on this exciting new journey. We welcome this opportunity to work in the domain of Orphan drugs, and we are eager to make a valuable contribution to patients across the globe who are living with Rare diseases”. “I’m captivated to have Adalvo as our partner with the important endeavor of helping neglected orphan patients and their caregivers with their unmet medical needs. I’m bullish on the synergistical power that could outcome from this collaboration for the benefit of rare disease patients". Dr. Shlomo Sadoun, CEO at SK Pharma About Adalvo Adalvo is a global pharmaceutical company, and one of the leading B2B pharmaceutical companies in Europe, with commercial partnerships in more than 70 countries and for over 90 commercial partners globally. The company’s declared purpose is to make a difference for patients all over the world, driven by our smart collaboration network and commitment to delivering highest quality differentiated products and services to our partners. With headquarters in Malta, the company has additional offices in more than 15 countries such as Switzerland, UK, Netherlands, Spain, Iceland, Austria, Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria, Portugal, Czech Republic, and India. At Adalvo, we know that our partners like to be bigger, better, and smarter in the dynamic pharmaceutical sector. That’s why our approach is unique, customized to our partners, and is designed to challenge the status quo: together, this helps our partners achieve their business goals. We take pride in our ability to help its partners reach their goals – be those increasing revenues or pushing into new markets. While partners are a high priority, Adalvo is also committed to its purpose and mission to accelerate the growth and development of employees and local communities. Adalvo tirelessly strives for excellence in all of its endeavors, driven by a deep-rooted passion to making a difference for partners. The company’s purpose driven culture is committed to improving the lives of patients around the world. Our dynamic leadership team brings significant experience and industry know-how to Adalvo, which has helped to establish the company as a reliable global partner. About SK Pharma SK-Pharma is a global pharmaceutical company focusing on making drugs accessible to patients in needs. The vison of the company lay in utilizing cutting edge technologies to support smart business decisions that will lead to better healthcare solutions. Taking patient centric approach, the company holistically follow the patient’s journey and understand better their unmet needs. Mimicking the patient journey allow us to come with viable solutions that change the patient treatment paradigm and make it more suitable to their lifestyle and their unique needs. The group is divided to three divisions: First to launch and the introduction of complex hybrid generic products. The second division is focusing on providing technological solutions to enhance smart business decisions. The third division is specialized in orphan drugs market access and distribution worldwide.

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RESEARCH

DEBIOPHARM INVESTS IN VERISIM LIFE'S $15M SERIES A ROUND TO ADVANCE AI-ENABLED DRUG RESEARCH

Debiopharm International SA | January 11, 2022

Debiopharm a Swiss biopharmaceutical company, announced their co-investment in California-based start-up VeriSIM Life's $15 Million Series A Round to advance their mission to accelerate drug development via technology powered by artificial intelligence. VeriSIM Life's computational platform reduces time and cost of drug development as well as reduces the need for animal testing that, in the vast majority of cases, does not translate well to humans. Debiopharm's co-investment in VeriSIM contributes to the growth plan of the start-up and will help to expand and establish transformational partnerships with industry and academia using their first-in-class 'virtual drug development engine' BIOiSIM™. The investment aligns with Debiopharm's focus to invest in digital health solutions that improve the cancer patient journey, transform pharmaceutical R&D, and shift healthcare towards a more patient-centric approach. With the financing round led by Morpheus Ventures, Debiopharm Innovation Fund joins new investors including Colorcon Ventures along with existing investors OCA Ventures, Intel Capital, Serra Ventures and Susa Ventures. Founded in 2017 by Jo Varshney, DVM and PhD alongside a cross-functional team of pharmaceutical scientists, software engineers and AI/ML and simulation experts, the start-up offers a range of translational-based solutions, customized for pre-clinical and clinical programs. "We're moving into a time where AI-based technology will play a critical role in drug development. We absolutely need to reduce the time, costs & risks of drug development in order to be more efficient – that's exactly what the BIOiSIM™ is proven to do. The value of using this AI-based platform is the potential decrease in the need for animal testing and the acceleration of the pre-clinical, translational stage, helping drug research companies to more quickly select which early-stage medicines will most likely benefit patients and cure their disease." Tanja Dowe, CEO of the Debiopharm Innovation Fund More than 90% of drugs tested in animals fail to pass human clinical trials, resulting in delayed development and high costs. VeriSIM's BIOiSIM platform, driven by AI and machine learning (ML), de-risks R&D decisions by providing meaningful insights much earlier in the drug development process with unprecedented accuracy and scalability. VeriSIM's platform solves this decade-old translatability problem within the drug development phase and ensures clinical success of drugs intended for highly unmet needs. With its first-in-class platform, VeriSIM is transforming the way pharmaceutical and biotech companies address the most challenging diseases impacting humankind. About VeriSIM Life VeriSIM Life has developed a sophisticated computational platform that leverages advanced AI and ML techniques to significantly improve drug discovery and development by greatly reducing the time and money it takes to bring a drug to market. BIOiSIM is a first-in-class 'virtual drug development engine' that offers unprecedented value for the drug development industry by narrowing down the number of drug compounds that offer anticipated value for the treatment or cure of specific illnesses or diseases. The program not only reduces the time and cost of drug discovery and development, it also greatly reduces the need for animal testing that, in the vast majority of cases, does not translate to humans. Debiopharm's commitment to patients Debiopharm develops, manufactures and invests in innovative therapies and technologies that respond to high unmet medical needs in oncology and bacterial infections. We aim to provide strategic funding and guidance for companies with Smart Data & Digital Health solutions with the ambition to change the way drugs are developed and the way patients are treated. Our growing portfolio company achievements includes 18 FDA clearances or CE marks and 2 IPOs. Since 2018 Debiopharm has invested over USD 120 million, typically leading the investment rounds of its 16 portfolio companies.

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PHARMACY MARKET

Harbour BioMed Announces IND Approval for Next-Gen Anti-TSLP Fully Human Monoclonal Antibody

Harbour BioMed | February 22, 2022

Harbour BioMed announced that China National Medical Products Administration had approved its investigational new drug (IND) application for HBM9378 a next-gen fully human antibody targeting thymic stromal lymphopoietin for the treatment of moderate-to-severe asthma. HBM9378/SKB378 is a co-development project conducted by HBM and Kelun-Biotech, who together equally share the global rights in respect of HBM9378. The IND approval of HBM9378 is an achievement of the strategic collaboration between the parties. According to the strategic collaboration and license agreement between HBM and Kelun-Biotech, the parties will jointly explore innovative therapies of monoclonal antibodies and antibody-drug conjugate. Building on HBM's innovative business model leveraging its productive R&D platform to lead the next generation of valuable and innovative therapies and its mission to address the unmet medical needs, HBM will continue to expand its collaboration with industry leading partners and further leverage on the combined capabilities of HBM and its collaborators. "HBM9378/SKB378, a next-gen fully human monoclonal antibody, is developed from HBM's H2L2 platform. Its long half-life optimization and outstanding biophysical properties support the favorable dosing advantage. The approval of this IND application once again proves HBM's powerful innovation capability. Unleashing the power of our unique R&D engine, we are highly confident and determined to defeat intractable diseases across the world." Dr. Jingsong Wang, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Harbour BioMed About HBM9378/SKB378 HBM9378/SKB378 is a fully human monoclonal antibody against TSLP generated from two heavy chains and two light chains (H2L2) platform. It inhibits the TSLP mediated signaling pathway by blocking the interaction between TSLP and TSLP receptor. TSLP plays important roles in DC cell maturation, T helper 2 (Th2) cell polarization and inflammation, particularly in both eosinophilic and non-eosinophilic inflammation asthma. About Asthma Asthma is a heterogeneous disease defined by the history of respiratory symptoms that vary over time and in intensity, together with variable expiratory airflow limitation. The disease is estimated to affect more than 300 million people worldwide and affect more than 45.7 million adult people (≥20 years) in China. Approximately 5-10% of those afflicted with asthma have severe disease that is poorly controlled. Despite the use of medium to high dose inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) in combination with a long-acting β2-agonist (LABA), currently available biologic therapies and oral corticosteroids (OCS), many severe asthma remain uncontrolled. Current biologics are mainly targeting Type 2 severe asthma which manifests clinically with a combination of peripheral eosinophilia, sputum eosinophilia and/or elevated fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FENO). Severe asthma patients experience frequent exacerbations, significant limitations on lung function and a reduced quality of life. The healthcare burden associated with care for these patients is also high. Therefore, there are still significant unmet needs to develop safer and broader therapies for severe asthma. About Harbour BioMed Harbour BioMed is a global biopharmaceutical company committed to the discovery, development and commercialization of novel antibody therapeutics focusing on immunology and oncology. The Company is building its robust portfolio and differentiated pipeline through internal R&D capability, collaborations with co-discovery and co-development partners and select acquisitions.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Dermaliq Therapeutics Signs USD 15 Million Series A Round to Advance Three Transformative Drug Therapies into Clinical Trials

Dermaliq Therapeutics | January 18, 2022

Novaliq GmbH, 3E Bioventures Capital and Beijing Whale Technology Corporation Ltd. today announced the establishment of Dermaliq Therapeutics, Inc (Dermaliq), a newly formed Delaware-based pharmaceutical development company, and the signing of a USD 15 million Series A financing round. 3E Bioventures Capital, a leading international life science investor, led the round and was joined by Beijing Whale Technology Corporation Ltd. Dermaliq's existing shareholder Novaliq has transferred, and licensed Intellectual Property (IP) related to the field of dermatology to Dermaliq. Skin diseases are the fourth leading cause of non-fatal disease burden worldwide, underscoring the role of dermatology in the growing field of global health. Skin conditions have significant impact on patients' well-being, mental health, and social participation. Although topical and local delivery of active ingredients to diseased skin is the preferred treatment route for the majority of patients, current therapies often lack satisfactory skin penetration and patient compliance. Dermaliq is developing the next generation of skin care therapies to enhance targeted penetration into skin tissues and to reduce unwanted side effects for millions of patients. The unique and proprietary technology now owned by Dermaliq, called hyliQ™, is designed to allow cutaneous drug delivery with unmatched bioavailability. The technology enables the development of superior, highly effective liquid drug products with exceptional cosmetic properties. The proceeds will be used to conduct three Phase 1/2a clinical dermatology programs with the goal to demonstrate safety and efficacy and to advance this novel skin care drug category to market to improve the lives of millions of patients: DLQ01 is a liquid drug candidate for the topical treatment of female and male androgenetic alopecia, targeting the prostamide E2 (PGE2) receptor in hair bulbs through specific follicular drug delivery. DLQ02 is a novel and liquid topical calcineurin inhibitor drug therapy for plaque psoriasis, particularly in difficult to treat areas. DLQ03 is a broad-spectrum liquid antibiotic drug candidate that targets topical treatment of bacterial skin and soft tissue infections, including the reduction of antibiotic-resistant strains. The Company has demonstrated proof-of-principle for enhanced topical drug delivery using hyliQ™ in nonclinical models for all three applications. "We are excited that 3E Bioventures Capital and Beijing Whale Technology Corporation have committed to support Dermaliq as new investors in the Series A round. Our spin-off from Novaliq and successful raising of significant funds provides us with the opportunity to build a leading specialty pharmaceutical company and expand the application of Novaliq's transformative drug delivery technology into dermatology." Dr. Frank Löscher, Chief Executive Officer of Dermaliq "3E is committed to investing in global leading life sciences and biomedical companies and help them grow with access to globalized resources and capabilities," said Karen Liu, Managing Director 3E Bioventures Capital. "Dermaliq is using a unique, and scientifically sound technology to achieve high efficiency drug delivery across the skin. The technology is already proven in ophthalmology and holds great promise for dermatology. We will be excited to explore additional drug pipelines in China and synergize with Dermaliq on both pre-clinical and clinical development." "Whale Technology values the solid science foundation of Dermaliq's proprietary hyliQ™ technology platform," said Ming Gao, founder and Chief Executive Officer of Whale Technology Co. Ltd. "Dermaliq's founding team demonstrates a great combination of science, clinical experience and commercialization strength. We see great potential of Dermaliq's pipeline in the field of dermatology after Novaliq's proven clinical and commercial success in ophthalmology." "Dermatology is the logical next step into using Novaliq's proprietary technology platform outside eye care," said Dr. Christian Roesky, Chief Executive Officer Novaliq. "The spin-off into an independent company allows Dermaliq to greatly benefit from our experience in ophthalmology while being fully committed to the multiple product development activities in dermatology, and likely to further broaden its pipeline to other skin conditions." To reflect the new shareholder structure, Karen Liu of 3E Bioventures Capital will join Dermaliq's Board of Directors. Dr. Löscher has also transitioned from his role as Chief Technology Officer at Novaliq to lead Dermaliq as its CEO & President. About Dermaliq Dermaliq Therapeutics, Inc. is a private company founded in 2021 through a spin off from Novaliq to reimagine topical dermatology. The Company is incorporated in Wilmington (DE), USA under Delaware law. The company has signed a USD 15 million series A round to advance three transformative skin care drug therapies through clinical trials. Key shareholders are Novaliq GmbH, 3E Bioventures Capital and Beijing Whale Technology Corporation Ltd. About 3E Bioventures Capital 3E Bioventures Capital is a healthcare venture capital firm, dedicated to investing in cutting-edge life sciences and biomedical technologies, with a focus on breakthrough first-in-class therapies and disruptive cross-disciplinary innovations in medical devices and diagnostics. 3E Bioventures takes on a science-driven, entrepreneur-friendly investment philosophy by working closely with companies and research institutions to develop drugs or products that have strong unmet medical needs. With offices in Beijing, Shanghai, and the San Francisco Bay Area, 3E Bioventures leverages its experience, capabilities, and network to help companies tap into markets and resources across the Pacific and advance with greater speed and capital efficiency. The motto of 3E Bioventures Capital is captured in its name 3E: Expertise, Efficiency, Execution. About Beijing Whale Technology Corporation Ltd Beijing Whale Technology Corporation Ltd. is a China-based pharmaceutical group committed to the long-term sustainable development in the fields of chemistry, pharmaceuticals and aesthetics. With more than 20 years of history, Whale Tech. has developed two core business units. On one hand, Whale Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., Whale Chemistry Co. Ltd. and Whale Pharmatech Co. Ltd. are grouped as pharmaceutical and chemistry business unit. On the other hand, Whale Biotech is a research stage biotech company with the focus of developing aesthetics products. About Novaliq Novaliq is a biopharmaceutical company focusing on the development and commercialization of first- and best-in-class ocular therapeutics based on EyeSol®, the worldwide first water-free eyedrop technology. Novaliq offers an industry-leading portfolio addressing today's unmet medical needs of millions of patients with eye diseases. Novaliq GmbH is headquartered in Heidelberg, Germany and Novaliq Inc. has an office in Cambridge, MA, USA. The long-term shareholder is dievini Hopp BioTech holding GmbH & Co. KG, an active investor in Life and Health Sciences companies.

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Fifty-one percent of national survey respondents say they’ve had a contact center strategy in place 3 – 5 years, and 48 percent call their strategy an enterprise transformation initiative. Can maximizing this resource take your hospital into the future? See what your peers are saying about using contact centers to help their organizations thrive in a constantly evolving healthcare environment.

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