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Targeted drug delivery driving partnerships, says expert

By Dan Stanton , 06-Feb-2014
Last updated on 19-Mar-2014 at 12:22 GMT2014-03-19T12:22:58Z

An increased trend in dealmaking for targeted drug delivery last year will continue to drive partnerships in 2014, according to a pharmaceutical partnering expert.

In 2013, the number of drug delivery deals inked in the healthcare industry stood at 392, according to the Drug Delivery Deals and Alliances of 2013 report , from Current Partnering . Though this number was shy of 2010 when 485 agreements were forged, it was the second year in a row that the number of partnerships increased.

This ‘recovery’ was led by deals in a number of traditional areas of drug delivery, but according to Current Partnering’s CEO Steve Poile, in 2013 pharma upped its focus on targeted delivery (transporting a drug directly to the target).

Furthermore, he told in-Pharmatechnologist.com whilst “injectable drug delivery continued to be a popular target for partnering, as did transmucosal (inhaled, nasal, ocular),” targeted delivery represented 48 deals in 2013 - up from 39 in 2012 -  and “will continue to be popular as developers seek to direct the drug to the organ/tissue requiring treatment.”

Data sourced from: Drug Delivery Deals and Alliances of 2013 report.

The graph above compares the number of deals made in the different delivery areas last year with 2012, and

One area predicted to drive dealmaking in 2013 was bioavailability. However, as the figures show on the graph above, the number of agreements dropped from 19 to 11.

“Bioavailability is just one issue,” said Poile. “In general, developers have addressed the delivery of biologicals by use of injectable, targeted, transmucosal routes. The continued use of these routes will drive forward the delivery of biological compounds.”

Big Pharma

Regarding the companies at the forefront of dealmaking, “a number of big pharma are working to exploit drug delivery technologies in their product development,” Poile told us.

“Big pharma is seeking to outsource its drug delivery requirements to industry expert partners by providing the partner with the challenge to demonstrate delivery of candidate compounds,” he continued.

“It makes sense for both parties that the first step in any partnership is an evaluation of a delivery technology using the drug in question, enabling the partner to demonstrate their technology’s capability within an affordable deal structure.”

A chart showing the most active players in making drug delivery deals between 2010 and 2013 is shown below and, as Poile pointed out, it’s not just Big Pharma leading the way but “several academic and non-profit organisations are also engaged to research targeted drug delivery.”

Bioavailability Challenge 2014

Drug bioavailability is a hot topic for the drug industry, with both small molecule-focused pharmaceutical firms and biopharmaceutical developers increasingly interested in technologies that can help them make promising therapeutic candidates into sellable products.

On March 27 we are holding the second edition of our “Bioavailability Challenge 2014”  a free to ‘attend’ online webinar series on March 20 focused on the difficulties developers face in ensuring their drug candidates are bioavailable.

Our editorial programme will feature contributions from Yorkshire Biotec and analysts group Frost & Sullivan will share its overview of the bioavailability services market.

The event will also feature presentations from scientists from Agere Pharmaceutical, Ashland, BASF, Dow and many more…

Click here  to sign up for the show. See you on March 27.

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