Elan's NanoCrystal Technology is a drug delivery technology that offers improved results when coupled with poorly water-soluble compounds. An increasing number of the drug candidates synthesised each year by pharmaceutical companies are poorly water-soluble.
The technology has been hailed as the solution to many of these potentially innovative drug candidates that are abandoned because of poor pharmacokinetic properties including absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion.
EntreMed are adamant that its cancer drug candidate, Panzem Nanocrystal Colloidal Dispersion (Panzem NCD or 2ME2), will benefit from combining with the nanocrystal technology. The drug is an orally active small molecule that attacks tumour cells through multiple mechanisms of action and blocks the development of new blood vessels that feed tumour cells.
Panzem NCD is an oral liquid formulation, has been shown in pre-clinical studies to significantly increase the drug's bioavailability, which is expected to result in enhanced drug levels of 2ME2 in patients.
"Interim results from our Phase 1b studies demonstrated that daily dosing with the Elan formulation maintains blood levels of 2ME2 within the desired therapeutic range, allowing us to move forward with Phase 2 clinical trials," said EntreMed president and chief executive officer, James Burns.
Under the terms of the License Agreement, Elan,/a> will receive payments upon the achievement of certain clinical, manufacturing, and regulatory milestones. Additionally, Elan will receive royalty payments based on sales of Panzem NCD. Further financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.
Addtionally, under the License Agreement and corresponding Services Agreement, Elan will manufacture EntreMed's Panzem NCD, a NanoCrystal Technology formulation with improved bioavailability and absorption.
Other marketed pharmaceutical products in the United States utilising Elan's NanoCrystal Technology include Abbott's TriCor, Par Pharmaceuticals' Megace ES and Rapamune, marketed by Wyeth.