Neurological Disorders Drug Development Pipeline has 420 Candidates, Says New Report

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A report released by PhRMA in conjunction with the Epilepsy Foundation reveals that the pipeline is dominated by biologics.


The drug pipeline to treat neurological disorders-which currently clocks in with 420 medicines under review by FDA-will be full of biologics, according to a


released by the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers of America and the Epilepsy Foundation. Specifically, the drugs in development target Alzheimer’s disease, chronic pain, brain tumors, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), epilepsy, Huntington’s disease, migraine, spinal cord injury, neurological genetic disorders, and stroke.

Many of the drugs in development and emphasized in the report are monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), says PhRMA, and the organization pointed out some particular antibodies of interest. A monoclonal antibody-based migraine treatment mentioned in the report targets the activity of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP); Alder Biopharmaceuticals is currently developing this medication. The report also indirectly mentioned (although not by manufacturer name) GlaxoSmithKline’s ozanezumab, which targets a protein called neurite outgrowth inhibitor (NOGO-A), or Reticulon 4, for the treatment of ALS. Lastly, the report highlights anti-LINGO-1, a neuroprotector mAb central to BIIB033, a medication from Biogen that is currently in Phase I and Phase II clinical trials.

Despite the promising number of drugs in development, PhRMA's mission to communicate the cost of drug development takes center stage in the report. It stresses again that drug discovery for a new medication takes 10 years and costs an average of $2.6 billion. PhRMA also points out that less than 12% of the candidate drugs that make it into Phase I clinical trials will be approved by FDA.

Source: PhRMA