INDUSTRY NEWS

True to Analyst Predictions, Amarin’s Shares Crash Following Vascepa Patent Invalidation

By Rajaneesh K. Gopinath, Ph.D. After almost three and a half years of prolonged court battles, Amarin Corporation has eventually lost a patent infringement lawsuit filed against Hikma Pharmaceuticals and Dr. Reddy's laboratories. Amarin is a pharmaceutical company that develops therapeutics to improve cardiovascular health. Its blockbuster drug, Vascepa (icosapent ethyl) is an omega-3 fatty acid product that contains purified EPA (omega-3 fat eicosapentaenoic acid) from fish oil. Vascepa was originally FDA approved back in 2012 to treat elevated triglyceride levels (hypertriglyceridemia) in patients, rivaling GlaxoSmithKline's Lovaza. Over the years, the drug rose to become a major revenue yielder for Amarin. Following a successful "Reduce-It" clinical trial,  last December, it bagged authorization for a broader label. The FDA granted approval to Vascepa as an add-on to statin therapy in patients who have either established cardiovascular disease (CV) or diabetes and two or more additional risk factors. When generic drugmakers Hikma...
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True to Analyst Predictions, Amarin’s Shares Crash Following Vascepa Patent Invalidation
FEATURE

Gut Bacteria and Cancer: From Cancer Development to Precision Medicine

By T. Chakraborty, Ph.D. While it may come across as a surprising fact, the human gut comprises millions of bacteria that harbor a symbiotic relationship with the body. The microbiota is comprised of various microbes including bacteria such as Bacteroides, Clostridium among others [1]. The gut microbiome plays an important role in regulating the body’s normal physiological and homeostatic functions. A healthy gut microbiota contributes to a good immune system by providing protection against external pathogens while regulating the endocrine and enteric nervous system [2]. By producing a variety of bioactive and signaling metabolites, it regulates key metabolic processes including drug metabolism, further impacting the host immune system. Any imbalance in the gut microbiome (gut dysbiosis) may lead to various illnesses including neurological disorders (Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s), cancer and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).   Role of Gut Microbiome in Cancer Etiology Previously unnoticed, the gut microbiome has been a key piece...
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Gut Bacteria and Cancer: From Cancer Development to Precision Medicine
ASIA INSIGHT COVID-19

Japan Trials Asthma Drug Alvesco to fight COVID-19

Several drugs have recently been repurposed to control the COVID-19 pandemic. Now two more drugs, Alvesco and Avigan, are under clinical trials to see whether they could help patients with mild or moderate symptoms. The SARS-CoV-2 viral outbreak has resulted in over 600,000 cases and more than 30,000 deaths globally. Several measures such as regulatory approvals of detection assays and the development of vaccines and repurposed drugs are in full swing. Among the handful of drugs that are currently under trials, Gilead Sciences' remdesivir is a notable candidate. Now, an asthma drug that was recognized by a Korean research group to be effective against COVID-19 is trialed in Japan as a potential treatment. Institut Pasteur Korea (IPK) has confirmed the effectiveness of the corticosteroid Alvesco (ciclesonide) in treating COVID-19 in a drug repositioning study by testing over 3,000 agents with infected cells. The study compiled a list of 20 antiviral...
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Japan Trials Asthma Drug Alvesco to fight COVID-19
INDUSTRY NEWS NEWS IN BRIEF

Mochida Pharma, Gene Techno Science Collaborate to Develop Regenerative Medicine for Rare Disease

The new alliance aims to perform regenerative drug research on congenital isolated hypoganglionosis, a rare intestinal innervation defect.  Gene Techno Science Co., a research-based, regenerative medicine pharma has signed a collaboration commitment with one of the oldest pharmaceutical groups in Japan, Mochida pharma, to develop new regenerative medicine for the treatment of digestive rare diseases. Gene Techno Science was established on top of some extensive research on immune-related drugs by the Institute of genetic medicine, Hokkaido university in 2001. The company's R&D group associated with Hokkaido University and reached the market with new immune therapy and cell therapy treatments through collaborations with some of the biggest pharmaceutical companies, such as Fuji and Mochida pharma among other research centers. Besides designing novel drugs, the company also produces generic drugs and biosimilars as well. Using stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth or cardiac stem cells, Gene Techno Science has developed eight...
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Mochida Pharma, Gene Techno Science Collaborate to Develop Regenerative Medicine for Rare Disease
COVID-19 FEATURE

The Immune System’s Fight against COVID-19

By Sahana Shankar, Ph.D. Candidate In the past month, Covid-19 has taken over the news cycle across science, health, economics, geopolitics, drug discovery, epidemiology, and many more segments. With a barrage of information available on cases reported, quarantine measures, clinical trials for drugs and vaccines, one area that is slightly under-reported is the physiological manifestation of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the relevant immunes responses in the human body. In broad strokes, it causes flu-like symptoms and in severe cases, it attacks the respiratory system causing pneumonia and breathing difficulties. A New Study Researchers at the Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, a joint venture between the University of Melbourne and The Royal Melbourne Hospital, Australia have conducted a study underlining the “kinetics of immune responses”, “clinical and virological features” of a hospitalized COVID-19 patient with mild-to-moderate infection who was able to recover without antiviral and steroid therapy, suggesting that our...
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The Immune System’s Fight against COVID-19
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INTERVIEW

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FEATURE INTERVIEW

Peeking into the Future of Synthetic Biology and Gene Editing, an Exclusive Interview with Dr. George Church

GeneOnline interviewed the legendary Dr. Church, while he was invited to the National Institute of Genomics and Proteomics of Taiwan University, and had him share some of his opinions on the field of genetic engineering with the audience. The Father of Synthetic Biology If you want to describe Dr. George Church in one sentence, many people will say that he is "the most daring synthetic biologist." You may have heard of genetic engineering, but you probably haven't thought about the crazy things that genetic engineering can do! The fictional genetic engineering ideas that occur only in movies has now been gradually realized. This includes editing DNA to treat hereditary diseases, editing aging genes to reverse aging, replacing USB with DNA...
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Peeking into the Future of Synthetic Biology and Gene Editing, an Exclusive Interview with Dr. George Church
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INDUSTRY

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True to Analyst Predictions, Amarin’s Shares Crash Following Vascepa Patent Invalidation

By Rajaneesh K. Gopinath, Ph.D. After almost three and a half years of prolonged court battles, Amarin Corporation has eventually lost a patent infringement lawsuit filed against Hikma Pharmaceuticals and …

ASIA INSIGHT

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Japan Trials Asthma Drug Alvesco to fight COVID-19

Several drugs have recently been repurposed to control the COVID-19 pandemic. Now two more drugs, Alvesco and Avigan, are under clinical trials to see whether they could help patients with …

TECHNOLOGY

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Peptide Therapeutics Market: Promise for a Painless Future

The production and consumption of therapeutics have metamorphosed biopharma into a money-spinning industry that has achieved unprecedented growth. Therapeutics, in simple terms, is a device to counter the deficiencies present …

NORTH AMERICA

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Experimental Plasma Treatment for COVID-19 Gets FDA Support

By Ruchi Jhonsa, Ph.D. From the very moment a pathogen enters the body, the immune system deploys small protein molecules called antibodies to fight it. These Y shaped molecules are …

TODAY IN HISTORY

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