This week's industry news:
FDA approves nasal spray for adults with treatment-resistant depression
The Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson (Beerse, Belgium) announced the FDA approval of SPRAVATO™ (esketamine) CIII nasal spray for use in conjunction with an oral antidepressant in adults with treatment-resistant depression, who have not responded adequately to at least two different antidepressants. Phase III clinical studies of more than 1,700 adults found patients symptoms had improved at 4 weeks and that they were 51% less likely to relapse in the long-term compared to those who received a placebo and an oral antidepressant.
“SPRAVATO™ has the potential to change the treatment paradigm and offer new hope to the estimated one-third of people with major depressive disorder who have not responded to existing therapies,” commented Mathai Mammen, Janssen Research & Development. “This unique and innovative medicine is a testament to Janssen's heritage of advancing solutions in neuroscience to heal minds and improve health outcomes.”
Antibody facility expansion planned for Aldevron
Aldevron (ND, USA) announced plans to expand its Freiburg, Germany facility with an aim to increase the company’s capacity to provide genetic immunization strategies to customers worldwide. Expansion of the GENOVAC antibody development platform facility will also allow for growth in personnel and equipment for improved cell culture, fusion, production and sequencing capacity while also providing space for new services to be launched later in 2019.
“We have seen a marked increase in demand, and this is an investment to better serve our clients,” commented Aldevron CEO, Michael Chambers. “We have been providing transformative antibody development solutions for all target types for more than 15 years. By expanding and enhancing our service offerings, we will be better able to respond to the industry that is continuing to grow and provide the solutions to some of the world’s biggest health challenges.”
RxCelerate to acquire molecular modelling company Prosarix
Outsourced drug discovery and development platform, RxCelebrate (Cambridge, UK), has announced that it has acquired molecular modeling company Prosarix (Cambridge, UK). It is hoped the merge will expand the company’s unique expertise and offer clients improved drug discovery capabilities.
Prosarix Chief Executive, Bill Hamilton, commented: “We are very excited to have this opportunity to join a rapidly-expanding, global, quality biotech business, with a unique platform delivering cutting-edge drug discovery and development on an out-sourced basis”