Connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), is a critical mediator in the progression of fibrosis and related serious diseases. FibroGen is developing Pamrevlumab, a fully-human monoclonal antibody that inhibits the activity of CTGF and in turn can benefit in Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) along with Pancreatic Cancer, and Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
FibroGen recently announced positive top line data for Pamrevlumab from phase 2 randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study and two combination safety sub-studies of Pamrevlumab in patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF)
The promise of selective IL-23 inhibitors in treating inflammatory diseases such as Psoriasis was borne out in mid-July 2017, when Janssen’s Tremfya® (guselkumab), a selective IL-23 inhibitor, was approved for the treatment of moderate to severe plaque psoriasis patients who are candidates for systemic therapy or phototherapy. Janssen’s decision to use a priority review voucher for submission of the biologics license application was fruitful and led to guselkumab’s approval four months before its estimated PDUFA date of November 2017.
On June 22, 2017, the US FDA approved the two-drug combo of Tafinlar® (dabrafenib) and Mekinist® (trametinib) for the treatment of patients with BRAF V600E-positive, advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). After receiving a green-light from the EMA (February 27, 2017), this duo has now entered the US market based on Phase II study results in which more than 60% of treatment-naive and previously treated patients responded. In 2015, this combination therapy received both orphan and breakthrough designation in lung cancer and in the same year, Novartis acquired them as part of its asset-swap deal with GlaxoSmithKline.
According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the number of new cancer cases will rise to 22 million within the next two decades, and the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO), with the motto of “ Conquering cancer through research, education, and promotion of the highest quality patient care”, is working with a “diverse network of more than 40,000 oncology professionals dedicated in providing the highest-quality resources in education, policy, clinical research for advancing the care for patients with cancer”.
Huntington’s disease (HD) is a devastating genetic disorder that robs its victims of physical and mental control. Resulting from the mutated HTT (Huntington’s) gene, it is one of the most destructive diseases known to man. There are approximately 30,000 symptomatic patients in the US and more than 200,000 at-risk of inheriting HD, usually diagnosed between the ages of 30 and 45. It impairs the patient’s ability to lead a normal life due to progressive chorea (abnormal involuntary movements) accompanied by cognitive and psychiatric problems. No treatment is available that can stop or reverse the course of HD and the average life expectancy following diagnosis is only about 10-30 years.