Investigative report calls for renewed scrutiny on Acadia drug; Imbruvica fails in frontline DLBCL PhIII
→ The spotlight on Acadia Pharmaceuticals’ $ACAD Parkinson’s drug has turned more intense as investigative journalist Roddy Boyd (you might remember his reporting on Valeant) drops an exposé on the company. Following a series of reports from CNN and ProPublica highlighting Nuplazid’s dangers, Boyd’s account pounded on both the controversial history of its approval and its spotty safety record since then.
Boyd, writing on the Southern Investigative Reporting Foundation, also questioned the marketing tactics of Acadia’s sales team, many of whom had been scooped from another scandal-prone company, Avanir: “For 2017, Acadia paid more than $8.6 million to 7,051 physicians, with 62 doctors receiving more than $50,000 apiece, and 26 receiving at least $100,000 each.” And there appears to be an overlap between frequent prescribers of the drug and those who received consulting fees.
The attention on safety issues has pushed a steep drop in Acadia shares, which have lost more than half their value over the past months. Nuplazid — designated a “breakthrough” drug — is now under review again at the FDA.
→ Researchers at AbbVie say that Imbruvica failed as a frontline therapy for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. Their drug in combination with other agents was unable to beat the standard of care — R CHOP — for treating the disease. They did, though, add that their drug apparently worked in a subset of patients and plan to follow up with more research.
→ Emma Walmsley’s remake of the executive roundtable at GSK is nearing completion. Today the pharma giant noted that general counsel Dan Troy is leaving the company after 10 years. He’s being replaced by James Ford, currently SVP and general counsel for Global Pharma.
→ France’s Antabio has added €5.2 million to their Series A, bringing the total to €12.5 million. The biotech is working on a inhibitor of bacterial metallo ß-lactamases for drug resistant cases. Omnes, BNP Paribas Développement, and Sham Innovation Santé (Turenne Capital) stepped in, with existing shareholder Galia Gestion.