CSL Behring using Albumedix tech to extend the half-life of new haemophilia drug

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

CSL opts for Veltis (source: iStock/ibreakstock)
CSL opts for Veltis (source: iStock/ibreakstock)

Related tags Dna

CSL Behring has opted to extend the half-life of its haemophilia B treatment Idelvion using a technology developed by Novozymes A/S subsidiary Albumedix.

Copenhagen, Denmark-based Albumedix announced CSL as a customer this week, explaining that its albumin-based Veltis technology will be used to ensure that Australia-listed drug firm’s recombinant Factor XI product circulates in the blood streams of haemophiliacs for longer.

The Veltis​ technology – which was previously known as Recombumin Flex​ – consists of modified albumin molecules that extend the half-life of therapeutic proteins. The platform was highlighted as a core part of Albumedix’s offering when the firm launched in January​.

GSK’s Type-2 diabetes drug Eperzan​ (albiglutide) – which is known as Tanzeum​ in the US - is the only currently approved product that employs Veltis.

CSL's Idelvion was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this month as a replacement for the clot inducing protein Factor IX that is missing or defective in people with Hemophilia B.

The US regulator highlighted​ Idelvion’s long half-life as a key attribute, stating that it “is produced by recombinant DNA technology linking Factor IX to albumin, a protein found in blood, which accounts for the product lasting longer when given intravenously​.”

The European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) has recently recommended that Idelvion be approved.

Biobetters pipeline

The Veltis technology – and others​ added since Albumedix launched – will be applied to drugs Albumedix is developing in-house according to CEO Peter Rosholm.

Rosholm told us in January that: “Albumedix’s strategy is to develop a small pipeline of drugs that uses our technologies to maximise return on our investment​.”

He did not disclose any specific targets but did say the products are likely to be biobetters.

Biobetters are tweaked versions of existing biopharmaceuticals that improve on the original by having, for example, longer half-lives that allow for reduced dosing.

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