05.06.2012 - Swedish Active Biotech draws new hope from a Phase II result with prostate cancer drug tasquinimod.
Lund – Almost a year ago Swedish Active Biotech AB saw its stock value dwindling away when the oral multiple sclerosis drug laquinimod failed in crucial Phase III testing. Although the price per share has doubled when compared to the start of the year, SEK44 is still far away from its last 12-month-cycle climax roughly a year ago.
On 4 June, Andrew Armstrong from the Duke Cancer Institute in Durham (USA) presented data on a long-term follow-up of a randomised Phase II placebo-controlled trial with Active Biotech's tasquinimod. The talk, given at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago (USA), focussed on the median overall survival times of patients suffering from castrate resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) which increased from 30.4 months (placebo) to 33.4 months (tasquinimod). Armstrong expressed that these findings surprised him: "Men with metastatic CRPC in this trial were unexpectedly found to have prolonged survival times, despite a high fraction of patients with liver and lung metastases."
Active Biotech is developing the drug together with Ipsen group, a pharmaceutical company from Paris (France) employing 4,500 people. Ipsen's CSO Claude Betrand was eager to announce he's pleased with the results: "We are thrilled. The results underline the activity of the compound. With its differentiated mechanism of action [not targeting the androgen receptor pathway] we hope to propose an alternative treatment after the ongoing Phase III results have replicated these interesting findings." So far 600 patients have been recruited for the double-blind Phase III study. In the end the study will include 1,200 patients from more than 250 clinics.
27.04.2016 More revenue, more jobs, more financing, more R&D expenditure – all signs point towards sustainable growth in the German biotech sector. These are the results of the most recent company survey 2016, published by biotechnologie.de. The report was once again conducted alongside the biotech standards defined by the organisation for economic cooperation and development (OECD).
21.04.2016 An expert panel’s final report on the fatal drug trial earlier this year in France states that the death of one of the participants was most likely caused by the drug’s toxicity and not by any violation of the rules.
21.04.2016 For up to US$685m (€606m), Dutch ArgenX has outlicensed its human antibody programme ARGX-115 to AbbVie. The pre-clinical immuno-oncology candidate targets a protein believed to contribute to immunosuppressive effects of T-cells.
19.04.2016 British drug developer Heptares Therapeutics and mAb maker Kymab Ltd have partnered up in yet another immuno-oncology collaboration. The companies plan to discover antibody meds targeting a superfamily of receptors.
15.04.2016 Not every company is put off by the current stock market climate. Swiss biopharma company GeNeuro has gone public at Euronext Paris, raising €33m in the process. Others, meanwhile, have to find different ways to raise money.
13.04.2016 Despite political disturbances, 2015 was a good year for the biotech scene in Switzerland. Net sales increased by 5.1% to CHF5,133m and 400 additional people found jobs in the sector. As usual, the new numbers were presented at the annual Swiss Biotech Day – which set new records as well.
12.04.2016 German-Dutch life science investment specialist Forbion Capital Partners has raised more than €180m for its venture capital fund Forbion Capital Fund III. Once more the money will primarily go to European start-ups.
08.04.2016 Do you win by being innovative?, was the question asked at this year’s DIA Euromeeting in Hamburg. In a relaxed and cooperative atmosphere, regulators, physicians and patients had ample opportunity to interact with the healthcare industry.
07.04.2016 Pfizer and Allergan have called off their merger, cancelling plans to relocate the US pharma giant to Ireland to avoid US taxation. The US government has put a spoke in Pfizer’s wheels - an unfair move, Allergan says.