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Novo Nordisk, JDRF team on Type 1 diabetes drug development

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — Novo Nordisk and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation on Wednesday announced the creation of a joint research and development team to discover and develop novel immunotherapies to prevent, treat and help cure Type 1 diabetes.

"JDRF is deeply committed to developing immunotherapies, and especially auto antigen-specific immunotherapies, for the prevention and cure of Type 1 diabetes," stated Richard Insel, JDRF’s chief scientific officer. "This collaboration with Novo Nordisk affords an exciting opportunity to accelerate the time frame when these therapies may prove to make an impact in Type 1 diabetes."

The collaboration with Novo Nordisk will be run out of the company’s newly opened Type 1 Diabetes Research and Development Center in Seattle. The center’s goal is to use translational research methods to rapidly move early-stage discovery projects in immunotherapy from animal models into small clinical exploratory trials.

"It is not a coincidence that we are opening our new Type 1 Diabetes Research and Development Center in Seattle at that same time that we announce a scientific partnership between our company and JDRF," stated Mads Krogsgaard Thomsen, EVP and chief science officer for Novo Nordisk. "Our new R&D center is founded on the principle of reaching out to academia, biotechnology companies and other key players in the international immunotherapy research community in order to join forces to develop the next treatment advance in the management of Type 1 diabetes."

The collaboration will focus on research originating from academia and biotechnology companies, as well as from internal research projects at Novo Nordisk.

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Stiefel acquires eczema remedy currently in phase-3 trials in the U.S.

BY Michael Johnsen

LONDON — Stiefel, a GlaxoSmithKline company, on Monday acquired the eczema remedy Toctino (alitretinoin) from Basilea Pharmaceutica.

“Toctino is an important and growing product that complements the Stiefel portfolio and offers a proven therapy for patients with a significant unmet medical need," stated Simon Jose, Stiefel president. "This acquisition gives us an immediate opportunity to develop and expand the availability of this new and innovative product of value, and reinforces Stiefel and GSK’s commitment to dermatology.”

Toctino is a once-daily oral retinoid and the only prescription medicine specifically approved for the treatment of severe chronic hand eczema unresponsive to potent topical steroids in adults. It is commercially available in 14 countries, approved in an additional 15 countries, and is in a phase-3 trial in the United States. In 2011, worldwide sales of Toctino were $34.2 million.

Under the terms of the agreement, Stiefel will acquire all Toctino patent rights, trademarks and product registrations owned by Basilea, and will license certain clinical information and product know-how from Basilea. Stiefel will be responsible for the product’s further development, manufacture and commercialization worldwide.

Basilea will receive an initial payment of $226.8 million in cash from Stiefel, and is eligible to receive further payments of up to $77.7 million upon FDA approval of the product in the United States, and double-digit success payments on U.S. net sales beginning three years after launch of the product in the United States.

The transaction is subject to competition approval in Germany.

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Walgreens: Educating patients with diabetes on insulin injection improves adherence

BY Michael Johnsen

DEERFIELD, Ill. — A new Walgreens study released Thursday found that a pharmacist-led training and counseling program for patients receiving an injectable diabetes medication improved medication adherence by 24%.

“Walgreens has nearly 26,000 pharmacists who are clinically trained and uniquely positioned to help patients with diabetes overcome any concerns and fears around self-injection, which can be obstacles to effectively self-managing their condition,” stated Jeff Kang, Walgreens SVP health-and-wellness services and solutions. “To date, more than 23,000 patients have participated in the diabetes injection training; demonstrating the widespread patient interest in this type of additional care pharmacists can provide.”

The study evaluated Walgreens’ first nationwide self-injection training program for diabetes patients prescribed to a self-injectable diabetes medication. For the study, Walgreens pharmacists trained more than 4,500 patients starting the medication for the first time on appropriate injection technique, side effect management and the importance of adherence to therapy. Pharmacists also provided a follow-up assessment at the patients’ next refill.

Initial results showed that patients who received two counseling sessions with a pharmacist had an additional eight days of therapy compared with a usual care control group in addition to the improved medication adherence.

The study, titled "Initial Impact of Medication Adherence of Diabetes Injectable Medication Through Pharmacist-Led Injection Training and Counseling," was presented at the American Diabetes Association’s 72nd Scientific Sessions, June 8 to 12 in Philadelphia.

 


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A.SCHAFER says:
Jun-20-2012 07:42 am

To gain more insights as to what US Pharmacists would recommend to improve adherence please see this primary market research report: http://www.isrreports.com/industry-reports/adherence-and-compliance

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