Several new technologies may decrease the prohibitive costs typically associated with drug discovery, according to a report by SECFilings.com, a financial news and information portal. Included in the report is Endonovo Therapeutics and its Cytotronics drug development platform based on bioelectronics technology.
The cost to develop a new pharmaceutical drug has more than doubled over the past 10 years to $2.6 billion, according to the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development, including an average out-of-pocket cost of $1.4 billion and an estimated $1.2 billion in returns that investors forego in the 10+ years that a drug candidate spends in development. These numbers don’t include the $300+ million spent on post-approval costs like dosing and formulation.
The high costs make a drug failure extremely detrimental to a company’s financial outlook, particularly if it’s a late-stage drug candidate. When drugs are approved, the high development costs also translate to higher costs for patients since drug companies must recoup the cost of the clinical trials (along with any failed drugs) within a patent window. Drug pricing, in many ways, is based on R&D costs rather than the value to patients.
Endonovo’s Cytotronics is being developed as a high-fidelity drug development and toxicology testing platform designed to catch problems early on. The platform uses bioelectronics to effectively grow and maintain three dimensional tissue/cell cultures for up to 180 days. Biotech firms can use these cell cultures to conduct toxicology testing to catch problems early on to avoid spending money to develop a toxic drug.
“A Phase I trial can cost roughly $15 million and take several years to complete and over 40% of marketing candidate drugs are terminated as a result of unexpected toxic effects,” said Alan Collier, Endonovo’s CEO. “We are developing our Cytotronics platform to be a high-fidelity system enabling drug and cosmetic products to be tested for their ADME and toxicity. Our ultimate goal focuses on lowering drug development cost while increasing safety.”
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