Cost-effectiveness watchdogs skewer Novartis' MS drug Mayzent and J&J's depression spray Spravato

fiercepharma | June 21, 2019

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) had a busy day Thursday, issuing final cost assessments on two highly anticipated neurology drugs: Spravato, the inhalable depression treatment from Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen, and Novartis’ Mayzent to treat secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (SPMS). The bottom line? Neither treatment is cost effective, ICER said. The agency weighed in first on Mayzent, which was approved by the FDA in March and priced at $88,500 per year. When ICER applied its usual analysis method to the drug—cost per life years gained—it determined that Mayzent exceeds its maximum threshold of $150,000. In fact, the drug would cost $1.57 million per life year gained, the final report said (PDF). The Novartis product “contributes substantial costs without providing a meaningful extension of life relative to best supportive care,” ICER said in a summary of its assessment (PDF). A spokesperson for Novartis told FiercePharma that the company provided feedback and recommendations to ICER during the review process but that those "are not fully reflected in the final report." He noted that ICER established cost effectiveness by comparing it to no treatment, when in fact most SPMS patients are treated with some form of therapy. The spokesperson added that the phase 3 trial for Mayzent "demonstrated a significant effect in delaying disability progression in a representative SPMS population."

Spotlight

Within the highly regulated pharmaceutical industry, pipeline activity is fueled by M&A and drug development. This process is drawn out by lengthy phases of research and discovery as well as risky clinical trials. For pharma companies (and by extension of their procurement teams), R&D activity is the biggest category of indirect spend.


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PHARMA TECH

iXensor Receives Strategic Investment from Rohto Pharmaceutical with A Separate Technology Licensing Agreement

iXensor | April 28, 2022

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Clearmind Medicine to Partner with Microdose for Psychedelic Capital

Clearmind Medicine Inc. | March 25, 2022

Clearmind Medicine Inc. a psychedelic medicine biotech company focused on the discovery and development of novel psychedelic-derived therapeutics to solve widespread and undertreated health problems, announced that its CEO, Dr. Adi Zuloff-Shani and Mark Haden, VP Business Development, will be presenting in the Psychedelic Capital: March 2022 virtual event. While the presentation is live streamed, lifetime access to recordings will be available to all ticket holders. About Clearmind Medicine Inc. Clearmind is a psychedelic pharmaceutical biotech company focused on the discovery and development of novel psychedelic-derived therapeutics to solve widespread and underserved health problems, including alcohol use disorder. Its primary objective is to research and develop psychedelic-based compounds and attempt to commercialize them as regulated medicines, foods or supplements. The Company’s intellectual portfolio currently consists of four patent families. The Company intends to seek additional patents for its compounds whenever warranted and will remain opportunistic regarding the acquisition of additional intellectual property to build its portfolio.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Agilent Announces the Innovative Seahorse XF Pro Analyzer

Agilent Technologies Inc. | January 25, 2022

Agilent Technologies Inc. announced the release of the Agilent Seahorse XF Pro Analyzer, featuring new pharma-oriented workflow solutions incorporating advanced experimental design and analysis tools. With enhanced performance, more robust and efficient workflows, and an optimized user experience, the XF Pro enables operators at any skill level to access the most advanced cellular metabolism analysis technology for understanding cellular fate, fitness, and function. Preclinical therapeutic discovery workflows place high demands on cellular analysis, with immunology and disease researchers increasingly using rare, ex vivo, and genetically engineered cells to build better disease models. To address the increasing interest in monitoring live cells in real-time, the new XF Pro Analyzer incorporates a suite of hardware and software enhancements that improve measurement performance and data interpretation. These enhancements will make it easier to identify novel drug targets, validate target effect on cellular function, optimize disease models, and determine drug safety and antitumor potential of T cell therapies. “With dedicated workflow solutions the XF Pro provides enhanced performance and customer experience, particularly within pharma and biopharma therapeutic development, and toxicity programs. This underlines Agilent’s commitment towards developing intentional end-to-end solution-focused innovations that continue to lead the way for applied analytical and research applications, including direct metabolic analysis.” Richard Fernandes, associate vice president and general manager of Agilent’s Cell Analysis, Seahorse, Luxcel, and microplates businesses "The launch of the XF Pro is very much a customer-driven event. Through collaboration and intentional conversations with our customers and key opinion leaders, we recognized the need for a live-cell metabolic analysis platform which makes sophisticated analysis even more accessible for both experienced users as well as novices,” added Chris Braun, associate vice president of Marketing for Agilent’s Cell Analysis Division. “Primarily targeting the pharma/biopharma sector, but beneficial to all our customers, the XF Pro incorporates critical metabolic insights into researchers’ discovery workflows to facilitate even higher quality data where it matters most.” The XF Pro Analyzer is expected to enhance critical aspects of live-cell analysis, particularly for researchers working in immunotherapy, early drug discovery, and preclinical safety assessment. By delivering better precision at a low oxygen consumption rate (OCR), the XF Pro Analyzer allows analysts to confidently interrogate more immune cell types, as well as cell types that are bioenergetically compromised. The instrument also features pharma-tailored workflows for harnessing robust cellular metabolism measurements while handling suspension cell types, along with simplified automation enablement and analytical instrument qualification (AIQ). About Agilent Technologies Agilent Technologies Inc. is a global leader in the life sciences, diagnostics, and applied chemical markets, delivering insight and innovation that advance the quality of life. Agilent’s full range of solutions includes instruments, software, services, and expertise that provide trusted answers to our customers' most challenging questions. The company generated revenue of $6.32 billion in fiscal 2021 and employs 17,000 people worldwide.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

AIkido Pharma Announces Strategic Investment in Social Communications Platform Provider Discord, Inc

AIkido Pharma Inc. | May 05, 2022

AIkido Pharma Inc. announced that the Company has secured an early equity interest in privately-held Discord, Inc. a social communications platform provider that is particularly popular with gamers. Bloomberg Technology reported on March 14, 2022, that Discord "is interviewing bankers about going public as soon as this year." According to the Bloomberg report, "Discord, last valued by private investors at about $15 billion, is especially popular with gamers and young people. Its success caught the attention of potential suitors, including Microsoft Corp., which was rebuffed after offering $12 billion for it last year." According to The Straits Times, Discord has also held discussions with Epic Games and Amazon.com in the past. "This investment fits well into our strategy to maximize opportunity for liquidity and monetization events for our shareholders. We believe the offer by Microsoft to buy the company bodes well for this investment, as does a potential near-term IPO." Anthony Hayes, CEO of AIkido About AIkido Pharma Inc. AIkido Pharma Inc. was initially formed in 1967 and is a biotechnology Company with a diverse portfolio of small-molecule anticancer and antiviral therapeutics. The Company's platform consists of patented technology from leading universities and researchers, and we are currently in the process of developing an innovative therapeutic drug platform through strong partnerships with world renowned educational institutions, including The University of Texas at Austin and University of Maryland at Baltimore. Our diverse pipeline of therapeutics includes therapies for pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer. We are constantly seeking to grow our pipeline to treat unmet medical needs in oncology. The Company is also developing a broad-spectrum antiviral platform that may potentially inhibit replication of multiple viruses including Influenza virus, SARS-CoV MERS-CoV, Ebolavirus and Marburg virus.

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Spotlight

Within the highly regulated pharmaceutical industry, pipeline activity is fueled by M&A and drug development. This process is drawn out by lengthy phases of research and discovery as well as risky clinical trials. For pharma companies (and by extension of their procurement teams), R&D activity is the biggest category of indirect spend.

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