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Pfizer acquires Amplyx Pharmaceuticals, including new potential class of therapeutics

Drug could treat life-threatening antifungal-resistant infections

Pfizer has announced its acquisition of Amplyx Pharmaceuticals, gaining a phase 2 investigational asset for the treatment of invasive fungal infections in the process.

The drug – fosmanogepix – is currently in phase 2 clinical trials evaluating the safety and efficacy of intravenous and oral formulations of the treatment for patients with life-threatening invasive fungal infections caused by molds, yeasts and rare molds.

Pfizer said that fosmanogepix offers a new potential class of therapeutics for the treatment of fungal infections that have become resistant of typical antifungal medications.

Over 1.5 million cases of invasive fungal infections are reported globally each year, with high mortality rates of 30-80% across different infection types.

Antifungal resistance can ‘severely’ limit treatment options, and Pfizer hopes fosmanogepix will offer a new mechanism of action to target difficult-to-treat fungal strains, giving doctors and patients an important novel treatment option.

According to Pfizer, the drug has already demonstrated broad activity in vitro and has also shown wide distribution to various tissues, including the brain, lungs, kidneys and eyes.

Although financial details of the deal were not disclosed, Pfizer highlighted its initial equity investment in Amplyx in December 2019 as part of the company’s Series C financing round.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has been a stark reminder of the devastating impact of infectious diseases, highlighting the continuous need for new anti-infective therapies to treat both emerging and difficult-to-treat bacterial, viral and fungal infections,” said Angela Lukin, Global President of Pfizer's Hospital business unit.

“We are deeply committed to helping patients suffering from infectious diseases, continuously seeking opportunities to build our portfolio of anti-infective therapies. We’ve already invested in assets that, if approved, could help address drug-resistant bacterial infections and critical viral infections; with this acquisition, we look forward to progressing the development of a novel anti-fungal as well,” she added.

Infectious disease account for over 8.4 million deaths annually across the globe, with infections caused by different types of pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites.

Last year, the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) joined forces with leading pharma and biotech companies to launch the AMR Action Fund.

It was created to bring two to four new antibiotics to patients by 2030 – treatments that are urgently needed to address the rapid rise of antibiotic resistance, part of the broader issue of antimicrobial resistance.

The Fund will invest in clinical research into new antibiotics to address the most resistant bacteria and life-threatening infections.

In February, the AMR Action Fund raised a further $140m from new investors to bolster its efforts, with new investments coming from the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation, the European Investment Bank and the Wellcome Trust.

Article by
Lucy Parsons

29th April 2021

From: Research, Sales

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