Vol 2, No 1 (2016)

Table of Contents

Editorial

by Jean-Marie Boeynaems
67 Views, 28 PDF Downloads
Welcome to the 3rd issue of the Journal of Medicines Development Sciences. Like previous issues it contains articles covering the entire process of drug development from target identification to drug registration.
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Review Article

by Franck Atienzar, Annie Delaunois, Frédéric Brouta, Miranda Cornet, Renaud Fleurance, Helga Gerets, Stéphanie Glineur, Catrin Hasselgren, Andrea Kiessling, Andre Nogueira da Costa, Marie-Luce Rosseels, Karen Tilmant, Jean-Pierre Valentin
347 Views, 229 PDF Downloads
Understanding and reducing attrition rate remains a key challenge in drug development. Preclinical and clinical safety issues still represent about 40% of drug discontinuation, of which cardiac and liver toxicities are the leading reasons. Reducing attrition rate can be achieved by various means, starting with a comprehensive evaluation of the potential safety issues associated to the primary target followed by an evaluation of undesirable secondary targets. To address these risks, a risk mitigation plan should be built at very early development stages, using a panel of in silico, in vitro, and in vivo models. While most pharmaceutical companies have developed robust safety strategies to de-risk genotoxicity and cardiotoxicity issues, partly driven by regulatory requirements; safety issues affecting other organs or systems, such as the central nervous system, liver, kidney, or gastro-intestinal system are less commonly addressed during early drug development. This paper proposes some de-risking strategies that can be applied to these target organ systems, including the use of novel biomarkers that can be easily integrated in both preclinical and clinical studies. Experiments to understand the mechanisms’ underlying toxicity are also important. Two examples are provided to demonstrate how such mechanistic studies can impact drug development. Novel trends in investigative safety are reviewed, such as computational modeling, mitochondrial toxicity assessment, and imaging technologies. Ultimately, understanding the predictive value of non-clinical safety testing and its translatability to humans will enable to optimize assays in order to address the key objectives of the drug discovery process, i.e., hazard identification, risk assessment, and mitigation.
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Review Article

by Dorothée Cammarata, Abduelhakem Ben Addi, Eva D’Amico, Bernard Robaye
90 Views, 78 PDF Downloads
Numerous studies have demonstrated the role of uridine diphosphate (UDP) and its P2Y6 receptor in the inflammatory reaction and innate immunity. However, the importance of the P2Y6 receptor in the adaptive immune response remains unclear. In this study, we demonstrate that the P2Y6 receptor is functionally expressed in murine bone marrow dendritic cells (BMDC). UDP induced a Ca2+ transient in these cells that was decreased in P2Y6-deficient mice. UDP also increased the endocytosis of fluorescein isothiocyanate-dextran (FITC-dextran) and amplified the secretion of interleukin 12-p70 (IL-12p70) induced by CpG; these responses were abolished in P2Y6-deficient mice. In vivo experiments showed that the serum level of specific IgG2c after immunisation with ovalbumin was decreased in P2Y6-deficient mice, while the level of specific IgG1 was unchanged. These data suggest that the P2Y6-mediated effects of UDP on myeloid dendritic cells play a role in the in vivo Th1 skewing of the immune response.
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Original Research Article

by Elyse I. Summers
68 Views, 77 PDF Downloads
This year marks the 15th anniversary of the founding of the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs (AAHRPP), an organization that has been instrumental in strengthening protections for research participants. AAHRPP was established by seven Founding Members in response to a series of high-profile incidents that shook the foundation of the U.S. research enterprise. The Founding Members viewed voluntary accreditation as one way to strengthen research protections and restore and preserve public trust. Today, AAHRPP accreditation is widely regarded as the gold standard for research protections. To attain accreditation, organizations must demonstrate that they adhere to rigorous standards covering three domains: The Organization, The Institutional Review Board or Ethics Committee, and Researcher and Research Staff. The emphasis is on system-wide policies and procedures that strengthen an organization’s commitment to participants and help ensure a more consistent, more effective approach to protecting them. Because AARHPP accreditation is considered an objective indicator of quality, the benefits to accredited organizations can be considerable. Their accreditation status sends a signal — to potential research partners, to sponsors and other funders, and to research participants — that the organization has the systems in place to conduct research in a scientifically and ethically sound manner.
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Original Research Article

by Victoria Elegant
87 Views, 173 PDF Downloads

The Asia Pacific region is an extremely diverse region, characterized by heterogeneity from a number of aspects, including culture, religion, economics, landscapes, and languages. This also applies to the standard of medical care and the regulatory requirements for approval of drugs in the region. Developed economies such as Japan and Australia have requirements which are not dissimilar to those of the EU and USA, but still have their own unique requirements. The developing economies all have their own requirements. In the ASEAN region there is harmonization of the dossier format, but each country still has local requirements. The region has seen significant growth in clinical trial activity, both to satisfy local registration and safety requirements and to help accelerate global trial patient recruitment. There is a clear need for training in all aspects of medical, regulatory, clinical and safety aspects of medicines development, which is being addressed through several organizations and at different locations in the region.

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Original Research Article

by Ana Paula Ruenis, João Massud Filho
76 Views, 81 PDF Downloads
Brazil is one of the world´s largest economies and pharmaceutical markets, having the Brazilian government as an important purchaser. There are strong local companies that have grown sustainably after the introduction of generics and are investing in both incremental and radical innovation. However, research and development (R&D) expenditures are still modest; this could be explained by a combination of economic and political uncertainty in the past few years and a bureaucratic, complex regulatory framework. New regulations, efforts to reduce ethical and regulatory review timelines, and a Senate bill aimed to accomplish that goal should constitute the definitive regulatory landmark for boosting clinical research. In addition to government investments they have given a breath of relief in the market, as Brazil is trying to, once again, gain momentum as a “must-go” country for clinical development. Non-profit associations such as the Brazilian Society of Pharmaceutical Medicine (Sociedade Brasileira de Medicina Farmacêutica-SBMF), the Brazilian Association of CROs (Associação Brasileira de Organizações Representativas de Pesquisa Clínica-ABRACRO), the Brazilian Clinical Research Alliance (Aliança Pesquisa Clínica Brasil), amongst others, helped to give the impulse to trigger such changes. It is time to invest heavily in developing educational programs to address the growing need for clinical development scientists and physicians.
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