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Jan 24, 2007

Molecular Insight Adds Novartis’ Pancreatic Tumor Radiotherapy to Pipeline

  • Molecular Insight Pharmaceuticals acquired Novartis Pharma’s candidate radiotherapy for neuroendocrine tumors. Molecular Insight plans to develop and sell Onalta, formerly known as OctreoTher™, for the treatment of certain types of pancreatic tumors.

    Onalta has been designated as an Orphan Drug. It is intended to complement Azedra™, Molecular Insight's Phase I radiotherapeutic candidate for the treatment of neuroendocrine tumors.

    Previously, Molecular Insight reports, Novartis conducted Phase I and Phase II trials with this compound in more than 300 patients. Molecular Insight plans to develop Onalta, a radio-labeled peptide, as a treatment for metastatic pancreatic neuroendocrine and carcinoid tumors in patients whose symptoms are not controlled by current somatostatin analogue therapy.

    Under the worldwide, exclusive licensing agreement, Molecular Insight will pay Novartis a licensing fee and additional payments based on certain regulatory milestones, as well as royalties upon commercialization. Molecular Insight will assume sponsorship of the IND application that Novartis filed.



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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

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