Midatech has today announced its signing of further research collaboration, this time with an unnamed ‘global pharmaceutical’ group that wishes to utilise its Q-Sphera™ platform in order to improve/optimise the bio-delivery and biodistribution of its medicines.
This news highlights the development potential available through each of Midatech’s three key platform technologies and quickly follows a similar, significant research collaboration, this time with Dr Reddy’s Laboratories (BSE:500124, NSE:DRREDDY, NYSE:RDY) (‘Dr. Reddy’s), the global pharmaceutical business, that was announced on 8 June 2020. Such nonexclusive partnering with international giants reflects early success of the Group’s revised lower-risk strategic policy announced on 20 April 2020.
Why does Big Pharma need Midatech?
Typically, with multi-billion-dollar market caps, tens of thousands of employees and giant R&D budgets, Big Pharma has huge resources at its disposal. Their businesses might stretch across proprietary products, pharmaceutical services and active ingredients to global generics.
The problem they each recognise, however, is that ageing therapeutic portfolios require improved formulation in order to extend existing patent protection, improve patient outcome and/or to differentiate their offer within a crowded marketplace. With Dr Reddy’s, for example, the focus is on developing differentiated formulations that present enhanced benefits in terms of efficacy and ease of use, leading to the resolution of unmet, inadequately met or inefficiently delivered patient needs.
Its broad therapeutic focus provides significant opportunity, with its management specifically stating that its development effort centres on ‘creating newer combinations as well as exploring new delivery mechanisms to improve patient comfort, convenience and efficacy’.
The new collaboration announced today is likely to be based on similar ambitions. Importantly, with some 80% of drugs globally now being dispensed in lower-cost generic formulations, developers actively recognise that delivery of advantageous pricing and reimbursement demands not just additional patient convenience/improved application of their product, but also ability to remove absolute cost from the system.
Significantly, Q-Sphera™ is capable of delivering this through extended dose intervals (from long-acting depot), subcutaneous administration and more predictable plasma levels, thereby allowing the patient to administer the treatment personally with reduced risk of falling outside the therapeutic window with resultant emergency visits etc., all eliminating cost.
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