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How Oral and Injectable Therapies Fit into the Current Business Landscape


In this Pharmaceutical Executive video interview, Currax Pharmaceuticals, CEO, George Hampton, talks about how different kinds of therapies perform and fit in in the current business landscape.

The current trend seems to be injectable therapies for this space. Contrave is an oral medication. How do these different kinds of therapies perform and fit in in the current business landscape?

This isn't necessarily a trend. It's not it's not something that you know, the lab scientist says ‘hey, this will be better if we put it in an injectable.’ It really comes down to the size of the molecule and being able to actually needing to put it in an injectable as opposed to an oral tablet to be able to deliver the medication and so yes, the current GLP-1s are injectables. There are a number of GLP-1s under development that are oral. And I think you know everyone from Pfizer to Lilly and to Novo have talked about the possibility to bring in an oral medication for or weight loss or GLP-1 market. So, I think it could be in the future, if you have the profile, the product is safe and effective as judged by the FDA.

Now that said, it does matter to patients, right, and so there's probably 15-16% of the population, that is what we call needle phobic, you just do not want to inject themselves and so they are not going to be able to access the therapy. Now with that barrier, and so the, you know, the oral comes into play there. Additionally, you know, I mentioned the, the mechanism of action for Contrave is very different from the mechanism of action of a GLP-1. And so contrary work in the mesolimbic system, the reward system of the brain versus GLP-1 really working on the gut hormones of the of the body are two different ways that a physician can choose two different types of medications to attack the patient's underlying disease that don't align to drivers of the patient's disease.

Certainly having oral and injectable therapies will increase ease of use, adherence, and take away the patient burden of just having to conform to one kind of therapy.

That's exactly right, you have a pill burden, you have an injection burden, you have we there's a product in development, that would be an infused product, you know, every three to six months. So, we obesity is the number one treated epidemic and treated epidemic in the United States, right, we over 100 million patients suffering from this disease and we as a country have ignored it. We have not, we have not paid for therapies, we've not paid for services, we've not paid for devices. And honestly, we got what we paid for we got we let the disease run on in an unbridled manner. And it's now our largest country's health problem. So, there are a lot of great pharmaceutical companies out of a great US based pharmaceutical companies really looking at different ways to provide, you know, to tack this disease through your medications.

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