PharmaNewsDaily.com https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com Coverage of Global Pharma Industry News Mon, 26 Oct 2020 17:29:45 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 148955499 Bayer to acquire US gene therapy company Asklepios BioPharmaceutical in $4bn deal https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/bayer-to-acquire-us-gene-therapy-company-asklepios-in-4bn-deal/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/bayer-to-acquire-us-gene-therapy-company-asklepios-in-4bn-deal/#respond Mon, 26 Oct 2020 17:25:43 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77108 German pharma giant Bayer has agreed to acquire US clinical-stage gene therapy company Asklepios BioPharmaceutical in a deal worth up to $4 billion. The portfolio of Asklepios BioPharmaceutical features investigational pre-clinical and clinical stage candidates, which are being developed for the treatment of neuromuscular, cardiovascular, central nervous system, and metabolic diseases. Asklepios BioPharmaceutical was established […]

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German pharma giant Bayer has agreed to acquire US clinical-stage gene therapy company Asklepios BioPharmaceutical in a deal worth up to $4 billion.

The portfolio of Asklepios BioPharmaceutical features investigational pre-clinical and clinical stage candidates, which are being developed for the treatment of neuromuscular, cardiovascular, central nervous system, and metabolic diseases.

Asklepios BioPharmaceutical was established in 2001 and is based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.

Through the deal, Bayer will get full rights to the US firm’s gene therapy platform, which includes an intellectual property portfolio and a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO), which is expected to provide a base for future partnerships in the area of adeno-associated virus (AAV) therapies.

Bayer said that the deal complements its last year’s acquisition of US cell therapy company BlueRock Therapeutics. Furthermore, it strengthens the German group’s goal to develop platforms with the potential of making an impact across multiple therapeutic areas.

Bayer acquisition of Asklepios

Bayer acquisition of Asklepios. Photo courtesy of Bayer AG.

Stefan Oelrich – President of Bayer Pharmaceuticals Division, commenting on Bayer acquisition of Asklepios, said: “As part of our strategy, we are building new therapeutic platforms including cell and gene therapies.

“As an emerging leader in the rapidly advancing field of gene therapies, the expertise and portfolio of AskBio supports us in establishing highly innovative treatment options for patients and further strengthens our portfolio.

“We want to help patients whose medical needs are not yet met by today’s treatment options and we are looking forward to work together with the team at AskBio.”

As per the terms of the deal, Bayer will pay Asklepios BioPharmaceutical an upfront amount of $2 billion followed by up to $2 billion in the form of potential success-based milestone payments.

Bayer said that nearly 75% of the potential success-based milestone payments are likely to be made during the course of the coming five years and the remaining amount later on.

Asklepios BioPharmaceutical will continue to operate as a standalone company on an arm’s-length basis after the acquisition, said Bayer.

Commenting on Bayer acquisition of Asklepios, Sheila Mikhail – CEO and Co-Founder of AskBio BioPharmaceutical, said: “With Bayer‘s worldwide reach and translational expertise, especially in pathway diseases, our combined cultures of scientific advancement and commitment to patients, along with the retention of AskBio’s independent structure, Bayer and AskBio are positioned to provide accelerated development of gene therapies to treat more patients who can benefit from them.”

Bayer acquisition of Asklepios is expected to be wrapped up in Q4 2020 once it satisfies customary closing conditions such as obtaining the necessary regulatory approvals.

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AstraZeneca resumes AZD1222 Covid-19 vaccine trials after brief pause https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/astrazeneca-resumes-azd1222-covid-19-vaccine-trials-after-brief-pause/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/astrazeneca-resumes-azd1222-covid-19-vaccine-trials-after-brief-pause/#respond Sat, 24 Oct 2020 17:35:20 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77105 AstraZeneca said that clinical trials for the AZD1222 Covid-19 vaccine candidate, have resumed in various parts of the world after regulators across the US, UK, Brazil, Japan, and South Africa confirmed that it was safe to continue them. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized the restart of AZD1222 clinical trials in the […]

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AstraZeneca said that clinical trials for the AZD1222 Covid-19 vaccine candidate, have resumed in various parts of the world after regulators across the US, UK, Brazil, Japan, and South Africa confirmed that it was safe to continue them.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized the restart of AZD1222 clinical trials in the US after the resumption of trials in other nations in recent weeks.

AstraZeneca said that the FDA looked into all safety data from trials in other parts of the world and came to the conclusion that it was safe to resume the Covid-19 vaccine trial.

It can be noted that AstraZeneca had to pause AZD1222 vaccination in all its global trials on 6 September to enable independent monitoring committees to examine its safety data. This was part of the standard review process for safety events for clinical trials, said the pharma giant.

The global trials for AZD1222, which was co-invented by the University of Oxford and its spin-out company – Vaccitech, were paused last month following an unexplained event of a participant becoming unwell.

AstraZeneca said that the recommendations from the reviews of the independent monitoring committees have been backed by international regulators, who also confirmed that the AZD1222 Covid-19 vaccine trials were safe to resume.

AstraZeneca resumes AZD1222 Covid-19 vaccine trials after brief pause

AstraZeneca resumes AZD1222 Covid-19 vaccine trials after brief pause. Photo courtesy of AstraZeneca.

Pascal Soriot – CEO of AstraZeneca said: “The restart of clinical trials across the world is great news as it allows us to continue our efforts to develop this vaccine to help defeat this terrible pandemic. We should be reassured by the care taken by independent regulators to protect the public and ensure the vaccine is safe before it is approved for use.”

AstraZeneca said that is not rare that in large scale vaccine trials, certain participants become sick, and every case has to be studied to make sure of the careful assessment of safety.

The pharma giant expects results from the late-stage trials later this year, based on the rate of infection within the communities where the studies are being held.

AstraZeneca will submit data readouts to regulators and publish them in peer-reviewed scientific journals. The pharma giant said that rolling reviews of the AZD1222 Covid-19 vaccine candidate have already commenced in countries where this regulatory pathway has been set up, giving regulators access to data as soon as they are ready.

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Covid-19 mRNA vaccine : Precision Nanosystems gets funding boost from Canadian govt https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/covid-19-mrna-vaccine-precision-nanosystems-gets-funding-boost-from-canadian-govt/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/covid-19-mrna-vaccine-precision-nanosystems-gets-funding-boost-from-canadian-govt/#respond Sat, 24 Oct 2020 15:57:00 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77102 Precision Nanosystems (PNI) has received a funding boost of up to CAD 18.2 million from the Canadian government to develop a mRNA vaccine for Covid-19. The funding from Canada’s Innovation, Science and Economic Development’s (ISED) Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) will help the Vancouver-based biotech company to move its Covid-19 mRNA vaccine candidate to clinical trials. […]

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Precision Nanosystems (PNI) has received a funding boost of up to CAD 18.2 million from the Canadian government to develop a mRNA vaccine for Covid-19.

The funding from Canada’s Innovation, Science and Economic Development’s (ISED) Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) will help the Vancouver-based biotech company to move its Covid-19 mRNA vaccine candidate to clinical trials.

Navdeep Bains – Canada Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry said: “An effective vaccine will be critical as we work to contain the COVID-19 virus and prevent future infections.

“Today’s contribution will support PNI to advance the development of an mRNA vaccine candidate through pre-clinical studies and clinical trials to help protect Canadians.”

Precision Nanosystems gets funding boost from Canadian government for developing Covid-19 mRNA vaccine

Precision Nanosystems gets funding boost from Canadian government for developing Covid-19 mRNA vaccine

Precision Nanosystems caters to more than 250 industry and academic partners with solutions for the development of vaccines, cell therapies, and gene therapies, in the areas of oncology, infectious diseases, and rare diseases.

With the investment from the Canadian government, Precision Nanosystems’ Chief Scientific Officer Dr Andrew Geall and his team will use their technology platforms and expertise in self-amplifying mRNA vectors, lipid-based drug delivery systems and nanomedicine manufacturing for developing a cost-effective vaccine for Covid-19.

James Taylor – CEO and co-founder of Precision Nanosystems said: “Since its inception PNI has executed on its mission to accelerate the creation of transformative medicines.

“It is an honor to be supported by the Canadian government in this global fight against COVID-19 and to further build capabilities for rapid response against COVID-19 and future pandemics.”

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Gilead Sciences wraps up $21bn acquisition of Immunomedics https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/gilead-sciences-wraps-up-21bn-acquisition-of-immunomedics/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/gilead-sciences-wraps-up-21bn-acquisition-of-immunomedics/#respond Sat, 24 Oct 2020 05:23:14 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77096 Gilead Sciences has wrapped up its previously announced $21 billion acquisition of New Jersey-based biopharma company Immunomedics. With the completion of the deal, Immunomedics has now become a fully-owned subsidiary of Gilead Sciences. The common stock of Immunomedics will be delisted from the Nasdaq Global Market. Immunomedics, which has been acquired for $88 per share […]

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Gilead Sciences has wrapped up its previously announced $21 billion acquisition of New Jersey-based biopharma company Immunomedics.

With the completion of the deal, Immunomedics has now become a fully-owned subsidiary of Gilead Sciences. The common stock of Immunomedics will be delisted from the Nasdaq Global Market.

Immunomedics, which has been acquired for $88 per share in cash by the US pharma giant, has been engaged in developing antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) for the treatment of hard-to-treat cancers.

The company’s Trodelvy (sacituzumab govitecan-hziy) is the first ADC to be approved by the US Food Drug and Administration (FDA) for the treatment of metastatic triple-negative breast cancer. Trodelvy is also the first anti-Trop-2 ADC to have been approved by the FDA.

Commenting on Gilead acquisition of Immunomedics, Daniel O’Day – Chairman and CEO of Gilead Sciences said: “We are very pleased to reach today’s milestone and to welcome the talented Immunomedics team to the Gilead family. There is a lot of important work ahead of us to deliver on the vast potential that Trodelvy offers for patients with cancer.

“Together we will bring Trodelvy to many more patients around the world with triple-negative breast cancer and continue to explore its potential in many other types of cancer, both as a monotherapy and in combination with other treatments.”

Meanwhile, Gilead Sciences has bagged Remdesivir FDA approval for the treatment of Covid-19 in patients needing hospitalization.

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Gilead Sciences bags Remdesivir FDA approval for Covid-19 treatment https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/gilead-sciences-bags-remdesivir-fda-approval-for-covid-19-treatment/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/gilead-sciences-bags-remdesivir-fda-approval-for-covid-19-treatment/#respond Sat, 24 Oct 2020 04:09:31 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77093 Remdesivir FDA approval : Gilead Sciences, a California-based biopharma company, has bagged approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its antiviral drug Veklury (remdesivir) for Covid-19 treatment in patients requiring hospitalization. This makes remdesivir the first approved treatment for coronavirus in the US. Remdesivir FDA approved indication : Veklury has been approved […]

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Remdesivir FDA approval : Gilead Sciences, a California-based biopharma company, has bagged approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its antiviral drug Veklury (remdesivir) for Covid-19 treatment in patients requiring hospitalization.

This makes remdesivir the first approved treatment for coronavirus in the US.

Remdesivir FDA approved indication : Veklury has been approved by the FDA for the treatment of adults and pediatric patients, aged 12 years and who weigh a minimum of 40 kilograms.

The antiviral drug from Gilead Sciences has already been used for Covid-19 treatment under the emergency use authorization (EUA) issued by the FDA in May 2020 amid huge number of corona cases in the US.

It has to be noted that Remdesivir FDA approval does not cover the entire population that was authorized to be treated by the drug under the emergency use authorization.

To address this, the FDA has revised the emergency use authorization to cover those who are suspected to have Covid-19 or are confirmed to have as per lab tests and are aged under 12 years or weigh between 3.5 kilograms and 40 kilograms. The FDA said that clinical trials are going on to understand the safety and efficacy of Veklury (remdesivir) in this type of pediatric population.

Gilead Sciences remdesivir FDA approval for Covid-19 treatment.

Gilead Sciences remdesivir FDA approval for Covid-19 treatment. Image courtesy of Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.

Stephen M. Hahn – FDA Commissioner, commenting on Gilead Sciences remdesivir FDA approval, said: “The FDA is committed to expediting the development and availability of COVID-19 treatments during this unprecedented public health emergency.

“Today’s approval is supported by data from multiple clinical trials that the agency has rigorously assessed and represents an important scientific milestone in the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As part of the FDA’s Coronavirus Treatment Acceleration Program, the agency will to continue to help move new medical products to patients as soon as possible, while at the same time determining whether they are effective and if their benefits outweigh their risks.”

Remdesivir clinical trials that drove its FDA approval for coronavirus treatment

Veklury (remdesivir) has been approved by the FDA based on the data of three randomized, controlled trials in Covid-19 patients hospitalized with mild-to-severe symptoms.

One of the three remdesivir clinical trials is the phase 3 ACTT-1 trial sponsored by the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

In the ACTT-1 Covid-19 clinical trial, remdesivir could provide clinically meaningful improvements in multiple outcome assessments in the participating patients, in comparison to placebo.

The average Covid recovery time for patients treated with Veklury (remdesivir) was 10 days in the ACTT-1 clinical trial, compared to 15 days for those in the placebo group.

Gilead Sciences CEO comments on Remdesivir FDA approval for Covid-19 treatment

Commenting on Gilead Sciences remdesivir FDA approval, Daniel O’Day – Chairman and CEO of Gilead Sciences, said: “Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Gilead has worked relentlessly to help find solutions to this global health crisis. It is incredible to be in the position today, less than one year since the earliest case reports of the disease now known as COVID-19, of having an FDA-approved treatment in the U.S. that is available for all appropriate patients in need.

“The speed and rigor with which Veklury has been developed and approved in the U.S. reflect the shared commitment of Gilead, government agencies and clinical trial investigators to advance well-tolerated, effective treatment options for the fight against COVID-19. We will continue to work at speed with the aim of enhancing patient outcomes with Veklury to ensure all patients with COVID-19 have the best chance at recovery.”

Veklury EU approval for Covid-19 treatment

In July 2020, Gilead Sciences was given conditional marketing authorization for Veklury (remdesivir) from the European Commission as a treatment for SARS-CoV-2 infection, the virus behind Covid-19. Read more about – Veklury EU approval for Covid-19 treatment here.

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VelosBio begins phase 2 trial of VLS-101 in solid tumors https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/velosbio-begins-phase-2-trial-of-vls-101-in-solid-tumors/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/velosbio-begins-phase-2-trial-of-vls-101-in-solid-tumors/#respond Tue, 20 Oct 2020 17:23:43 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77064 VelosBio, a San Diego-based biopharma company, said that it has dosed the first patient in a phase 2 clinical trial of its investigational antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) VLS-101 in patients having solid tumors. VLS-101, which is the company’s lead product candidate, targets a cell-surface protein called ROR1. Expressed during embryofetal development, ROR1 is however not seen […]

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VelosBio, a San Diego-based biopharma company, said that it has dosed the first patient in a phase 2 clinical trial of its investigational antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) VLS-101 in patients having solid tumors.

VLS-101, which is the company’s lead product candidate, targets a cell-surface protein called ROR1.

Expressed during embryofetal development, ROR1 is however not seen before birth. It is generally not expressed on normal cells in either children or adults but can reappear on malignant tissues, including on solid tumors.

By targeting the ROR1 protein, VLS-101 is designed to selectively deliver cancer-fighting therapeutics to tumor cells, while not affecting normal cells.

The mid-stage clinical trial of VLS-101 will aim to enroll patients who were previously treated with solid tumors. These include breast cancer, lung cancer, and other cancer that are thought to express ROR1.

The participating patients will be administered with VLS -101 2.5 mg/kg intravenously once every three weeks as long as they are safely benefiting from the drug candidate.

The primary endpoint of the phase 2 trial is the objective response rate as determined by standard response criteria. The clinical trial will evaluate safety, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and immunogenicity of the investigational antibody-drug conjugate and study the influence of biomarkers on the result.

Dave Johnson – CEO of VelosBio said: “VLS-101 dosing of the first patient in our Phase 2 solid tumor trial represents a key milestone for our lead ROR1-directed clinical program.

“Based on the broad expression of ROR1 across different cancer types, and our pre-clinical data showing VLS-101 antitumor activity in solid tumors, we are excited to advance this investigational candidate as a potential new therapy for difficult-to-treat cancers.”

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Endo International to acquire BioSpecifics Technologies for $658m https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/endo-international-to-acquire-biospecifics-technologies-for-658m/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/endo-international-to-acquire-biospecifics-technologies-for-658m/#respond Mon, 19 Oct 2020 14:06:16 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77060 Endo International has agreed to acquire BioSpecifics Technologies, a New York-based commercial-stage biopharma company, for $88.5 per share, or an estimated enterprise value of around $658 million. The Irish pharma company and BioSpecifics Technologies have been in a strategic partnership since 2004. BioSpecifics Technologies had developing a form of injectable collagenase clostridium histolyticum (CCH), which […]

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Endo International has agreed to acquire BioSpecifics Technologies, a New York-based commercial-stage biopharma company, for $88.5 per share, or an estimated enterprise value of around $658 million.

The Irish pharma company and BioSpecifics Technologies have been in a strategic partnership since 2004.

BioSpecifics Technologies had developing a form of injectable collagenase clostridium histolyticum (CCH), which is a specific collagenase formulation. It was first approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) about 10 years ago for the treatment of Dupuytren’s contracture.

In 2013, collagenase clostridium histolyticum was approved by the FDA for the treatment of Peyronie’s disease. In July 2020, the collagenase formulation was approved by the regulator for the treatment of cellulite.

For the first two approved indications, Endo International has been marketing the collagenase-based therapy under the brand name XIAFLEX.

For the treatment of cellulite, the collagenase-based therapy branded as Qwo will be launched by Endo International’s subsidiary Endo Aesthetics in Spring 2021.

Product shot of Qwo.

Product shot of Qwo. Photo courtesy of Endo International plc.

Joseph Truitt – CEO of BioSpecifics Technologies said: “BioSpecifics Technologies Corp. pioneered the development of collagenase-based therapies, which has resulted in a robust injectable collagenase (CCH) portfolio, consisting of XIAFLEX to treat the vast number of diseases and medical conditions caused by the excess accumulation of collagen and Qwo for the treatment of cellulite.”

BioSpecifics Technologies has been earning a royalty stream pertaining to XIAFLEX and Qwo.

Blaise Coleman – President and CEO of Endo International said: “Acquiring BioSpecifics is consistent with our strategic priority to expand and enhance our portfolio through additional investment in the significant long-term growth potential of both XIAFLEX and QWO – two of our most durable and differentiated products.

“This transaction will also immediately enhance Endo’s adjusted EBITDA and create significant value for shareholders of both organizations.”

The deal, which has been approved unanimously by both the companies’ boards of directors, is expected to close during Q4 2020.

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Bracco Diagnostics gets FDA nod for CardioGen-82 infusion system https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/bracco-diagnostics-gets-fda-nod-for-cardiogen-82-infusion-system/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/bracco-diagnostics-gets-fda-nod-for-cardiogen-82-infusion-system/#respond Sun, 18 Oct 2020 15:19:50 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77046 Bracco Diagnostics, the US subsidiary of Italian diagnostic imaging company Bracco Imaging, has secured approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its new CardioGen-82 infusion system. According to Bracco Diagnostics, CardioGen-82 infusion system is used for improving automation, efficiency, and simplicity in cardiac position emission tomography (PET) myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI). CARDIOGEN-82 […]

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Bracco Diagnostics, the US subsidiary of Italian diagnostic imaging company Bracco Imaging, has secured approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its new CardioGen-82 infusion system.

According to Bracco Diagnostics, CardioGen-82 infusion system is used for improving automation, efficiency, and simplicity in cardiac position emission tomography (PET) myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI).

CARDIOGEN-82 (Rubidium Rb 82 Generator) is a closed system which produces rubidium Rb 82 chloride injection for intravenous administration.

Rubidium Rb 82 chloride injection is a radioactive diagnostic agent indicated for Positron Emission Tomography (PET) imaging of the myocardium under rest or pharmacologic stress conditions to assess regional myocardial perfusion in adults having suspected or existing coronary artery disease.

The diagnostic imaging company said that its next-generation infusion system model will replace its current infusion system.

Vittorio Puppo – President and CEO of Bracco Diagnostics said: “The new infusion system exemplifies Bracco’s significant investment in the cardiac PET imaging modality and is the culmination of thoughtful design and feedback from healthcare providers. Developing innovative products that support clinicians in diagnosing coronary artery disease is our commitment to the patients we serve.”

Bracco Diagnostics said that the new infusion system is designed elegantly with intuitive and ergonomic details that offer convenient access to all system components while minimizing exposure to radiation for both staff and patients.

Other smart features of the CardioGen-82 infusion system are said to help in achieving workflow efficiencies that can save approximately an hour at the start of each day of patient imaging and in removing the need for manual record keeping.

Kim McDaniel – Bracco Diagnostics Nuclear Medicine Sales and Market Support Senior Director said: “Cardiac PET MPI with the CardioGen-82 generator has helped accurately diagnose thousands of patients since 1989.

“Bracco was the first company to heavily invest in the modality for the diagnosis of coronary artery disease, and our introduction of the new infusion system is one more example of our commitment to our customers and patients worldwide.”

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Lilly to acquire SARM1 inhibitor developer Disarm Therapeutics https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/lilly-to-acquire-sarm1-inhibitor-developer-disarm-therapeutics/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/lilly-to-acquire-sarm1-inhibitor-developer-disarm-therapeutics/#respond Fri, 16 Oct 2020 15:41:27 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77048 Lilly acquisition of Disarm Therapeutics : Eli Lilly and Company (Lilly) has agreed to acquire Disarm Therapeutics, a biotech company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, which is focused on developing a new class of disease-modifying treatments for patients with axonal degeneration. As per the terms of the deal, Lilly will pay an upfront payment of $135 […]

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Lilly acquisition of Disarm Therapeutics : Eli Lilly and Company (Lilly) has agreed to acquire Disarm Therapeutics, a biotech company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, which is focused on developing a new class of disease-modifying treatments for patients with axonal degeneration.

As per the terms of the deal, Lilly will pay an upfront payment of $135 million to Disarm Therapeutics. Apart from that, Disarm Therapeutics’ equity holders will stand to receive up to $1.225 billion in the form of future payments associated with potential development, regulatory, and commercial milestones if Lilly successfully develops and brings to market new drugs resulting from the transaction.

Disarm Therapeutics has discovered SARM1 inhibitors and is taking them in preclinical development, with an aim to offer breakthrough treatments to patients having peripheral neuropathy and other neurological disorders like amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and multiple sclerosis.

Mark Mintun – Lilly vice president of pain and neurodegeneration research, commenting on Lilly acquisition of Disarm Therapeutics, said: “Lilly continues to seek medicines to treat the debilitating pain and loss of function associated with nerve damage.

“The scientific team at Disarm discovered an important and highly promising approach to combat axonal degeneration. We will move quickly to develop their SARM1 inhibitors into potential medicines for peripheral neuropathy and neurological diseases, such as ALS and multiple sclerosis.”

Lilly acquisition of Disarm Therapeutics

Lilly acquisition of Disarm Therapeutics. Photo courtesy of Momoneymoproblemz/Wikipedia.org.

Axonal degeneration is a common pathology in a wide range of neurological disorders and is yet to be addressed, said Lilly. The condition is known to be the driver of severe sensory, motor, and cognitive symptoms.

The scientific founders of Disarm Therapeutics – Dr. Jeffrey Milbrandt and Dr. Aaron DiAntonio of Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis discovered that the SARM1 protein is the main driver of axonal degeneration.

The company’s SARM1 inhibitors are designed to directly stop the loss of axons.

Commenting on Lilly acquisition of Disarm Therapeutics, Alvin Shih – CEO of Disarm Therapeutics, said: “Disarm’s innovative approach to treating axonal degeneration holds tremendous promise for addressing a wide spectrum of neurological diseases, and we have made significant strides toward enabling potentially transformative therapies.

“Lilly is ideally suited to advance this exciting new approach to treating axonal degeneration, and we look forward to seeing patients benefit from the work that Disarm initiated.”

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Oxford develops rapid diagnostic test to detect Covid-19 within 5mins https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/oxford-develops-rapid-diagnostic-test-to-detect-covid-19-within-5mins/ https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/oxford-develops-rapid-diagnostic-test-to-detect-covid-19-within-5mins/#respond Fri, 16 Oct 2020 15:05:21 +0000 https://www.pharmanewsdaily.com/?p=77077 Oxford University claimed that scientists from its Physics department have developed an extremely rapid diagnostic test for Covid-19. The rapid diagnostic test can detect and identify viruses within five minutes, said the UK-based university. The method can be used to differentiate the SARS-CoV-2 virus from negative clinical samples and also from other common respiratory pathogens […]

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Oxford University claimed that scientists from its Physics department have developed an extremely rapid diagnostic test for Covid-19.

The rapid diagnostic test can detect and identify viruses within five minutes, said the UK-based university.

The method can be used to differentiate the SARS-CoV-2 virus from negative clinical samples and also from other common respiratory pathogens like influenza and seasonal viruses with high accuracy.

It has been published on the preprint server MedRxiv.

The procedure begins with the quick labeling of virus particles in the sample with short fluorescent DNA strands by directly working on throat swabs from Covid-19 patients, without the necessity of genome extraction, and also purification or amplification of the viruses.

The images of the sample will be collected using a microscope, with each image consisting of hundreds of fluorescently-labeled viruses.

Machine-learning software is then used for detecting the virus present in the sample quickly and automatically. This approach utilizes the fact that different virus types have differences in their fluorescence labeling as they differ in their surface chemistry, shape, and size.

Oxford University scientists develop rapid diagnostic test to detect Covid-19 within five mins.

Oxford University scientists develop a rapid diagnostic test to detect Covid-19 within five mins. Image courtesy of the University of Oxford.

The scientists collaborated with clinicians at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford to validate the assay on samples of Covid-19 patients, which were confirmed by conventional RT-PCR methods.

Professor Achilles Kapanidis from Oxford University Department of Physics said: “Unlike other technologies that detect a delayed antibody response or that require expensive, tedious and time-consuming sample preparation, our method quickly detects intact virus particles; meaning the assay is simple, extremely rapid, and cost-effective”.

The Oxford University researchers are planning to develop an integrated device for testing across businesses, music venues, airports, and others.

Presently, the scientists are working with Oxford University Innovation and a couple of external business or finance advisors to establish a spinout. The scientists are looking for investment to speed up the translation of the rapid diagnostic test for Covid-19 into a fully integrated device that can be used as a real-time diagnostic platform that can detect multiple virus threats.

They expect to incorporate the company by the end of 2020, and to begin product development early next year, and have an approved device available within six months of that time.

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