Thursday, March 2, 2017

Sometimes, Staying IN The Game -- Is In Truth, The Only Game...

Call this one a "no-quitters-allowed" story: Regular readers will recall that after Merck spent about $120 million, it returned the rights to these bioscience sublinguals to ALK-Abelló, since it was likely that the first one, the ragweed agent, had generated less than $50 million in revenue in the first couple of years on market. [And that outcome was consistent with our guesses in April of 2014.]

But today brings a story of why it's nice sometimes to be a smaller pharma/bio-science player: ALK Abello is up over 3 per cent on the day, as it clears FDA with the second agent, a dust mite allergy sub-lingual. Kudos to that team for staying the course. From PharmaTimes, then:

. . . .House dust mites are the most common cause of allergy in the world, affecting 90 million people in Europe, North America and Japan, and more than 100 million in China. Nearly 50 percent of all house dust mite-allergic rhinitis patients suffer from concomitant asthma.

The HDM sublingual allergy immunotherapy (SLIT) can now be used by doctors to treat the condition, with or without conjunctivitis, when confirmed by in vitro testing for IgE antibodies to Dermatophagoides farinae or Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus house dust mites, or skin testing to licensed house dust mite allergen extracts. . . .

Of course, Kenilworth continues to handle the FDA clearance negotiations, and Catalent will still manufacture (in the UK), for ALK-Abelló. To be clear, I think Merck was smart to return it, and act as a "fee-for-service" FDA consultant here; it was never going to move the needle in Kenilworth, as we long held. So now you know -- and all's well that ends. . . well. Or so we hope, as we close out another personal year-marker here, with St. Patrick's just a few weeks away. . . . for hope is a good thing -- perhaps the best of all things.


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