Weekly Quick Hits (Greater Philly) – Week of June 26, 2023

The Greater Philadelphia Region, often referred to as Cellicon Valley, is a hotbed of life science research and industry. Here’s a look at some of this week’s top life science stories for the region.

By Mark Terry
June 30, 2023

Quick Hits is BioBuzz’s weekly round up of all the life science news you don’t want to miss, in your region of interest. Don’t miss a beat; SUBSCRIBE to our weekly Quick Hits newsletter via LinkedIn (BioHealth Capital Region, Greater Philadelphia, Research Triangle Park) or get it delivered to your inbox every week.

Funding, Awards and Collaborations 

B Braun and Rockwell Medical Ink 3-Year Co-Promotional Collaboration

B Braun Medical, with U.S. offices in Allentown and Bethlehem, PA, inked a 3-year co-promotional collaboration deal with Wixom, Mich.-based Rockwell Medical. The deal designates B Braun as an independent, non-exclusive representative to promote Rockwell’s hemodialysis concentrates products to dialysis providers in the U.S.

CHOP Receives $1 Million Grant from Pediatric Cancer Foundation

Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) received $1 million from Pediatric Cancer Foundation. The money will help fund a Phase I clinical trial of a new immunotherapy that targets the FLT3 receptor protein in high-risk pediatric leukemias.

In the Clinic

Blue Earth Diagnostics Announces Reproducibility Results from Phase III Study

Blue Earth Diagnostics (Monroe Township, NJ and Oxford, UK) announced inter- and intra-reader reproducibility results from its Phase III LIGHTHOUSE trial of Posluma (flotufolastat F 18) injection in newly diagnosed prostate cancer. Data demonstrated high inter-reader agreement across all three trained, blinded readers.

Carisma Doses 1st Patient in Phase I Solid Tumor Trial

Carisma Therapeutics, based in Philadelphia, dosed the first patient in its Phase I trial of CT-0508 with Merck’s anti-PD1 checkpoint inhibitor Keytruda (pembrolizumab) for treatment of hER2 overexpressing cancers. CT-0508 is a HER2-targeted chimeric antigen receptor macrophage (CAR-M).

New Patents

Annovis Bio Files Groundbreaking Patent

Berwyn, Pa.-based Annovis Bio filed a new composition of matter provisional patent with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The company says the patent for a novel crystalline form of buntanetap offers significant advantages over the previous, less structured form, including more stability, higher purity, longer half-life, which will improve the drug’s effectiveness.

Research Roundup

Enterin Presents Data Showing Strong Benefit of ENT-03 on Body Weight and Blood Glucose

Philadelphia-based Enterin presented in vivo data showing the benefit on body weight, adiposity and blood glucose of ENT-03 compared to semaglutide in an obese, diabetic animal model. It also demonstrated persistent benefit on weight beyond treatment.

Penn Research: Antibody Treatment Prevents Graft Versus Host Disease

Researchers at Penn Medicine and Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center published research describing preclinical tests of an antibody treatment that prevented graft versus host disease (GVHD) in the intestines. GVHD is a common complication from a bone marrow transplant.

Penn Research: Tobacco Smoke Exposure May Increase Heavy Metals in Children’s Saliva

Research published by Lisa Gatzke-Kopp, professor of human development and family studies at the University of Pennsylvania, suggests that exposure to tobacco smoke may increase the amount of heavy metals in children’s saliva. Her team found environmental tobacco smoke exposures contributed to an increase in levels of trace metals such as copper and zinc and non-essential metals such as lead.

On the Hill – Regulatory and Advocacy

Sun Pharma Presents Data from First-in-Human Phase I Studies of GL0034

Sun Pharma Industries, with offices in Princeton, NJ and Mumbai, India, presented results from two Phase I trials of GL0034, a novel long-acting GLIP-1 receptor agonist in non-obese and obese adults without diabetes. In one study, GL0034 reduced triglyceride levels and body weight by Day 8 after a single dose in obese individuals without diabetes. In the other study, the drug administered in multiple-asce4nding doses once a week for up to 8 weeks was well tolerated and showed meaningful pharmacodynamic effects in healthy individuals with normal body weight.

GSK’s Shingrix Approved in Japan; Daprodustat Receives CHMP Support in Europe

GlaxoSmithKline, with offices in Philadelphia, announced the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare approved an updated indication for Shingrix for the prevention of shingles in adults 18 years and over who are at increased risk. The company also reported that the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) of the European Medicines Agency issued a positive recommendation for daprodustat for the treatment of symptomatic anemia associated with chronic kidney disease in adults on chronic maintenance dialysis.

Amicus’ Pombiliti + Opfolda Approved in Europe for Pompe Disease

Amicus Therapeutics (Philadelphia) announced the European Commission approved Opfolda (miglustat) + Pombiliti (cipaglucosidase alfa) as treatment for adults with late-onset Pompe disease. Pombility was approved by the EC in March 2023.

People on the Move

Windtree Appoints Mark Strobek to Board

Warrington, Pa.-based Windtree Therapeutics appointed Mark Strobeck, Ph.D., to its board of directors. Strobek is President, CEO and board member of Rockwell Medical.