18.03.2013 - After having shown an 80% response rate in lung cancer patients, the US-FDA has granted breakthrough status to Novartis’ Phase I ALK blocker LDK378.
The novel „breakthrough status“ opens up the possibility to Novartis to conduct only one instead further two clinical study phases before bringing the compound to the market. Novartis, which had already begun recruiting patients for several Phase II studies with LDK378 to improve treatment for patients with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) mutations is slated to start phase III testing this year. The company, which started clinical testing of LDK378 in 2011, said, it plans to file for market authorisation at the beginning of 2014.
The LDK378 treatment will be made available to a subgroup of patients who did not respond sufficiently to crizotinib treatment and who suffers from limited treatment options. In a Phase I trial Novartis’ "breakthrough drug" showed 80% response rate in 88 patients with advanced ALK-positive NSCLC, which makes about 8% of all NSCLC cases. LDK378 is a highly selective inhibitor of an important cancer target, anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK). Because it is an investigational compound, the safety and efficacy profile of LDK378 has not yet been established.
16.12.2014 Two consortia combined of 144 European companies, research institutes and universities have been selected for funding by the EIT in the areas of health and raw materials. Both clusters are set to acquire €1.1bn over the next seven years.
10.12.2014 When it comes to the biggest investors in Research and Development (R&D) Swiss pharma top dogs Novartis and Roche have defended their positioning among the top ten companies worldwide – according to a recently published EU study.
05.12.2014 Austrian contract research company VTU has entered into a development and commercialisation agreement with US company RCT. The partners want to combine both companies' Pichia pastoris protein production technologies under VTU's roof.
03.12.2014 Danish biotech pharma Ascendis has successfully completed a €48m Series D financing round. The funding is expected to support its late-stage clinical trials to push its lead drug into Phase III trials.
01.12.2014 In spite of innovative new medicines on the market, the UK and Germany lag behind other countries and continue to use older medicines - especially in the treatment of cancer. French and Spanish patients, on the other hand, benefit much earlier from medical innovation.
28.11.2014 The first gene therapy for a rare genetic condition — UniQure's Glybera — is on its way to the European market. But there is a hefty price tag: Chiesi, responsible for the marketing of the orphan drug, is asking for a record price of €1.1m per patient.