U.S. FDA Grants Priority Review to Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca's Metreleptin, an Investigational Agent for Treatment of Metabolic Disorders Associated with Rare Forms of Lipodystrophy
PRINCETON, N.J. & WILMINGTON, Del.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYS: BMY) and AstraZeneca (NYS: AZN) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted and granted a Priority Review designation for the Biologics License Application (BLA) for metreleptin, an investigational agent for the treatment of metabolic disorders associated with inherited or acquired lipodystrophy (LD), a rare disease estimated to affect a few thousand people around the world, often with an early age of onset.
"The FDA's granting of Priority Review for the metreleptin BLA highlights the significant unmet medical need for patients affected by lipodystrophy and brings us an important step closer to potentially bringing a treatment option to these patients," said Fred Fiedorek, MD, senior vice president, Head of Development, CV and Metabolics at Bristol-Myers Squibb. "Developing metreleptin for the treatment of lipodystrophy demonstrates Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca's continued dedication to scientific innovation and global patient care for people impacted by diabetes and related metabolic disorders."
The FDA grants Priority Review to medicines that may provide a treatment option where little or no adequate therapy exists. Under the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA), the FDA aims to complete its review within an eight-month review cycle, rather than the standard 12-month review cycle.
The primary data supporting the BLA filing are from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) ongoing, open-label trial in adult and pediatric patients with inherited or acquired LD.
About the Ongoing National Institutes of Health (NIH) Study
The NIH study is an ongoing, open-label trial of investigational metreleptin in patients with inherited or acquired lipodystrophy. The trial was initiated in 2000 by investigators at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of NIH, to evaluate the safety and efficacy of investigational metreleptin for treating metabolic abnormalities associated with lipodystrophy, including insulin resistance, diabetes mellitus, hypertriglyceridemia and hepatic steatosis and steatohepatitis (also known as fatty liver disease).
Metreleptin, an investigational recombinant analog of the human hormone leptin, has received orphan designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and is being evaluated for the treatment of metabolic disorders associated with inherited or acquired lipodystrophy.
Lipodystrophy is a very rare disease estimated to affect only a few thousand people around the world. The condition often presents at an early age during childhood or adolescence.
Patients with lipodystrophy experience a loss of fat tissue, especially fat under the skin. This loss of fat tissue causes a deficit in the hormone leptin. Without enough fat tissue or leptin, the body's system for regulating energy use and storage falls out of balance. The resulting serious imbalance causes lipid to accumulate where it shouldn't be found—such as in the liver and muscle—which can lead to serious complications, including severe insulin resistance, diabetes, high levels of triglycerides and/or inflammation in the liver.
There are several reasons for developing lipodystrophy. In some patients, it is genetic and in others it may be acquired for different reasons, including cases in which the immune system may attack and destroy existing fat tissue. Sometimes, clearly defined reasons for the development of the condition are unknown.
Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca Collaboration
Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca entered into a collaboration in January 2007 to research, develop and commercialize select investigational drugs for type 2 diabetes. The Bristol-Myers Squibb/AstraZeneca collaboration is dedicated to global patient care, improving patient outcomes and creating a new vision for the treatment of diabetes and related metabolic disorders. The expansion of the collaboration covers the co-development and marketing of products in the Amylin Pharmaceuticals portfolio, including, among others, investigational metreleptin, a recombinant analog of the human hormone leptin currently under review by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of lipodystrophy.
About Bristol-Myers Squibb
Bristol-Myers Squibb is a global biopharmaceutical company whose mission is to discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines that help patients prevail over serious diseases. For more information, please visit http://www.bms.com or follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/bmsnews.
AstraZeneca is a global, innovation-driven biopharmaceutical business that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialization of prescription medicines, primarily for the treatment of cardiovascular, metabolic, respiratory, inflammation, autoimmune, oncology, infection and neuroscience diseases. AstraZeneca operates in over 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide. For more information please visit: www.astrazeneca.com.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Forward Looking Statement
This press release contains "forward-looking statements" as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 regarding product development. Such forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and involve inherent risks and uncertainties, including factors that could delay, divert or change any of them, and could cause actual outcomes and results to differ materially from current expectations. No forward-looking statement can be guaranteed. Among other risks, there can be no guarantee that metreleptin will receive FDA approval, that the timing of any such approval will occur within the time period described in this release or that, if approved, it will become a commercially successful product. Forward-looking statements in this press release should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect Bristol-Myers Squibb's business, particularly those identified in the cautionary factors discussion in Bristol-Myers Squibb's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2012, in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and our Current Reports on Form 8-K. Bristol-Myers Squibb undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
AstraZeneca Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
In order, among other things, to utilise the 'safe harbour' provisions of the US Private Securities Litigation Reform Act 1995, we are providing the following cautionary statement: This press release contains certain forward-looking statements with respect to the operations, performance and financial condition of the Group. Although we believe our expectations are based on reasonable assumptions, any forward-looking statements, by their very nature, involve risks and uncertainties and may be influenced by factors that could cause actual outcomes and results to be materially different from those predicted. The forward looking statements reflect knowledge and information available at the date of preparation of this press release and AstraZeneca undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements. We identify the forward-looking statements by using the words 'anticipates', 'believes', 'expects', 'intends' and similar expressions in such statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking statements, certain of which are beyond our control, include, among other things: the loss or expiration of patents, marketing exclusivity or trade marks, or the risk of failure to obtain patent protection; the risk of substantial adverse litigation/government investigation claims and insufficient insurance coverage; exchange rate fluctuations; the risk that R&D will not yield new products that achieve commercial success; the risk that strategic alliances and acquisitions will be unsuccessful; the impact of competition, price controls and price reductions; taxation risks; the risk of substantial product liability claims; the impact of any failure by third parties to supply materials or services; the risk of failure to manage a crisis; the risk of delay to new product launches; the difficulties of obtaining and maintaining regulatory approvals for products; the risk of failure to observe ongoing regulatory oversight; the risk that new products do not perform as we expect; the risk of environmental liabilities; the risks associated with conducting business in emerging markets; the risk of reputational damage; the risk of product counterfeiting; the risk of failure to successfully implement planned cost reduction measures through productivity initiatives and restructuring programmes; the risk that regulatory approval processes for biosimilars could have an adverse effect on future commercial prospects; and the impact of increasing implementation and enforcement of more stringent anti-bribery and anti-corruption legislation. Nothing in this press release should be construed as a profit forecast.
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