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Press Release: Novo Nordisk starts phase 1 trial with oral insulin analogue
Novo Nordisk today announced that it has initiated its first phase 1 clinical trial with an oral insulin analogue (NN1952). This milestone releases a USD 2 million payment to Merrion Pharmaceuticals plc, whose GIPET® technology is used in the formulation of NN1952.
The aim of the trial, which is conducted in Germany, is to investigate the safety, tolerance, pharmacokinetics (exposure of drug) and pharmacodynamics (effect) of NN1952 in healthy volunteers and people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Results from the trial, which is planned to enrol about 80 people, are expected to be reported in the first half of 2011.
There are many challenges with the development and production of a reliable insulin formulation for oral use. They include avoiding enzymatic degradation in the gastrointestinal tract, overcoming poor spontaneous insulin permeability over the intestinal wall, limiting variability of absorption (caused, for example, by interaction with food), and producing insulin in sufficient scale cost-effectively.
“We still have many challenges to overcome, and it is far too early to say whether or when oral insulin will become an alternative to insulin injections,” says Peter Kurtzhals, senior vice president and head of diabetes research at Novo Nordisk. “However, I am encouraged by the progress our research and development teams have made during the past two years, and which has led us to this important milestone.”
NN1952 has been designed to address some of the key challenges relating to oral insulin delivery. Furthermore, it utilises the GIPET® formulation technology from Merrion Pharmaceuticals to facilitate insulin absorption from the gut.
John Lynch, chief executive of Merrion, says, “The USD 2 million milestone payment, which we have achieved by meeting all necessary deadlines, is an extremely positive development for Merrion. This is a major programme for Merrion and we are determined to ensure that our highly motivated team of specialists maximises the likelihood of success for Novo Nordisk’s oral insulin candidates.”
In November 2008, Merrion entered into a development and licence agreement to develop and commercialise oral formulations of Novo Nordisk's proprietary insulin analogues, using Merrion's proprietary GIPET® technology (Gastrointestinal Permeation Enhancement Technology). This is the first development milestone achieved by Merrion under this agreement.
Oramed Announces Completion Of Pivotal Phase 2b Clinical Trials Of It's Oral Insulin Capsule, ORMD-0801 For Type 2 Diabetes
Oramed Pharmaceuticals Inc. (OTCBB: ORMP.OB) announced the completion of its' pivotal Phase 2b clinical study of its oral insulin capsule, ORMD-0801. The Company expects to report results from this study within the coming weeks.
The Phase 2b trial is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multi-centered study, that primary evaluated the safety, and tolerability of Oramed's oral insulin delivery technology. The study took place in five locations throughout South Africa and was monitored by OnQ Consulting, a clinical research organization (CRO) based in Johannesburg, South Africa.
"The completion of the Phase 2b clinical trial for ORMD-0801 is a significant milestone for Oramed," said Nadav Kidron, Chief Executive Officer of the Company, who continued, "We are especially thankful for the dedication of all the investigators who participated in the study."