NEW YORK—Pfizer Inc. has entered into an agreement to acquire Serenex, Inc., a privately held biotechnology company with an extensive compound library that targets Heat Shock Protein 90 (Hsp90). Pfizer will acquire the rights to SNX-5422, an oral Hsp90 inhibitor currently in phase I trials for the treatment of solid tumors and hematological malignancies. Pfizer will also acquire Serenex’s proprietary drug discovery technology. SNX-1012, in development for the treatment of oral mucositis in cancer patients, is not included in the agreement.
New indication for Aloxi injection
TOKYO—Based on phase III data, Eisai’s 5-HT3 receptor antagonist Aloxi (palonosetron) injection has received FDA approval for a new indication—the prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting for up to 24 hours after surgery. Aloxi injection was first approved in 2003 for the prevention of acute and delayed nausea and vomiting associated with initial and repeat courses of moderately emetogenic chemotherapy and for the prevention of acute nausea and vomiting associated with initial and repeat courses of highly emetogenic chemotherapy.
ADH-1 gets orphan drug status
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, North Carolina—Adherex Technologies Inc. has announced that FDA has granted orphan drug designation for the use of ADH-1 in conjunction with melphalan for the treatment of stage IIB/C, III, and IV malignant melanoma. Adherex is currently conducting a phase IIb expansion trial in melanoma using systemic ADH-1 in combination with regional melphalan. N-cadherin, the molecular target for ADH-1, is frequently and often intensively expressed in melanoma, the company said.
Matuzumab development halted
OSAKA, Japan—Takeda, with its partner Merck, has decided to discontinue its joint development of matuzumab (EMD72000), based on findings in phase II clinical trials to date. Matuzumab is a recombinant humanized monoclonal antibody that targets EGFR.