Protalix may be gaining on Genzyme in two treatment areas.
Protalix announced this week that it is making strong progress on the development of an oral drug for Gaucher's disease. This would obviate the need for intravenous administrations (like Genzyme's current therapy Cerezyme). Patients like oral administration much better which results in higher drug taking compliance and better disease management -- not to mention happier patients.
Similarly, Protalix reports making progress in one of its preclinical drugs - PRX-102 - for Fabry's disease. They tout this new drug as a potential best in class therapy. Genzyme of course has struggled mightily in the past to years to make enough of its Fabrazyme - due to sever manufacturing issues that have resulted in it being under a FDA consent decree.
Shire recently introduced a competitive therapy in Europe - Replagel. And Fabry patients in the US have petitioned the NIH to give patent rights to another manufacturer to make Fabrazyme - and have petitioned the FDA to require Fabrazyme supplies to be sold in the US first before servicing Europe (as Europe has Replagel and the US does not). The opportunity clearly exists for Protalix if its therapy holds up under clinical trials. See Fierce Biotech.
"Don't look back [Genzyme], something might be gaining on you" -- Satchel Paige
Posted by Bruce Lehr Jan 21st 2011.