Danish companies in the life sciences sector formed strategic alliances, were granted product approvals and took other initiatives in August and September 2011. Norrbom Vinding provides you with an overview of events:
Bee stings and food can cause severe acute allergic reactions, which require quick and effective treatment. Therefore the Danish pharmaceutical company, Alk-Abelló, which focuses on allergy prevention, diagnosis and treatment, developed an adrenaline autoinjector which patients can carry with them all the time. Now a new and improved version has been launched under the name Jext®. The auto-injector has an increased shelf life and is the first in which Alk-Abelló owns the global product rights.
Alk-Abelló has also announced that its Japanese partner is making progress towards the introduction of the MITIZAX® tablet in Japan. The tablet is intended to treat hay fever and asthma induced by house dust mites. The tablet will be tested in phase I studies in Japan. Alk-Abelló will initiate phase III studies in Europe.
In North America, a number of phase III studies of Alk-Abelló’s vaccine against ragweed allergy have been completed. Results are positive and the company expects to present the data later this year together with Merck, its strategic partner in North America.
H. Lundbeck A/S
In late August, the Danish pharmaceutical company Lundbeck announced that the successful antidepressant Lexapro® has been launched in Japan. The antidepressant is currently the most prescribed branded antidepressant in the world, and phase III studies have confirmed its positive efficacy and tolerability profile in Japan. The Japanese launch of Lexapro® is made by Lundbeck’s partners Mochida Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. and Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corporation.
Novo Nordisk A/S
In late September, the Danish insulin giant Novo Nordisk announced that it had filed for regulatory approval of the insulin products Degludec and DegludecPlus in the US and EU. Both products are long-lasting insulin analogues which represents a new generation of Novo Nordisk products. The products have been tested with positive results in very largescale clinical trials involving almost 10,000 patients. The trials were completed in 2010. It is not known how long the European and US regulatory agencies will take to process the applications.
Novozymes is a member of a consortium of companies set up to develop innovative and more environmentally friendly energy solutions. The consortium has now been selected for funding from the US Department of Energy and will receive about USD 2 million in research funding. The role of Novozymes will be to research whether enzymes can contribute to enabling cleaner emissions from coal-fired power plants.