Hospitals

Biotech startup’s drug could help patients with post surgical respiratory depression

A drug developer is working on a compound that could be used to treat patients with anesthesia induced respiratory depression following surgery. It’s a life threatening condition for which elderly, obese and patients with obstructive sleep apnea are at high risk. The condition can be caused in part by underlying medical conditions and medications patients might […]

A drug developer is working on a compound that could be used to treat patients with anesthesia induced respiratory depression following surgery. It’s a life threatening condition for which elderly, obese and patients with obstructive sleep apnea are at high risk.

The condition can be caused in part by underlying medical conditions and medications patients might be taking for them. The treatment is intended to reduce the cost of complications caused by respiratory problems and improve patient safety.

Jim Mannion, the CEO of Galleon Pharmaceuticals in Horsham, Pennsylvania, presented the company’s drug development plan at the annual venture capital and angel investor conference organized by the Philadelphia Alliance for Capital and Technologies last week.

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A Deep-dive Into Specialty Pharma

A specialty drug is a class of prescription medications used to treat complex, chronic or rare medical conditions. Although this classification was originally intended to define the treatment of rare, also termed “orphan” diseases, affecting fewer than 200,000 people in the US, more recently, specialty drugs have emerged as the cornerstone of treatment for chronic and complex diseases such as cancer, autoimmune conditions, diabetes, hepatitis C, and HIV/AIDS.

It is raising $25 million to advance its respiratory depression treatment through phase 2a development and to develop an oral treatment for obstructive and complex sleep apnea. Its lead drug for post surgical respiratory depression has been tested in two clinical studies. An upcoming proof of concept study will simulate a post operative environment and evaluate the effects of its treatment with low and high dose opioids, according to the company’s presentation.

It also has an oral treatment under development for complex and obstructive sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is the more common version in which throat muscles relax, but adherence for the mask worn by those with the condition is “highly variable.”

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