Baxter International Inc., recently reported data on three areas of hemophilia preclinical research at the World Federation of Hemophilia 2008 World Congress in Istanbul, Turkey, from June 1-4, 2008. The data were presented via oral presentations and poster sessions.
The first report focused on a potentially longer-acting alternative recombinant factor VIII (rFVIII) drug candidate for hemophilia A patients. The drug is developed using PEG (polyethylene glycol) technology. The results of preclinical tests with animal models showed that PEG rFVIII demonstrated a significantly longer half-life when compared to unmodified rFVIII.
The second report involved the development of a partially humanized mouse model for hemophilia A. It is composed of key components of the human immune system so that researchers are able to more accurately anticipate and subsequently lessen the risk of immune responses that could potentially lead to inhibitor development. The models could help Baxter researchers develop optimal drug candidates.
The third report concerned the development of an investigational recombinant von Willebrand factor (VWF) therapy. Baxter reported that preclinical studies have shown that its recombinant VWF (rVWF) has similar properties to plasma-derived VWF, the current therapy for patients with Type 3 von Willebrand disease. Using Baxter’s proprietary plasma-albumin free manufacturing technology, company researchers developed a rVWF product without using human blood-derivatives, theoretically eliminating the potential risk of blood-borne pathogen transmission. The therapy has not yet been tested in humans.
“The data presented possibly lay the groundwork for extending our recombinant portfolio to include novel therapies to potentially improve the lives of people with rare blood disorders,” said Hartmut Ehrlich, MD, vice president of Global Research and Development for Baxter’s BioScience business. “We are proud to utilize our heritage in hemophilia to pioneer the next generation of therapies, which may allow for less frequent infusions and provide improved convenience for patients.”
Source: Baxter news release dated June 4, 2008