Aim is to develop gas-propelled delivery system for use with high-dose biologics.

Zogenix and Battelle inked a letter of intent to embark on a collaboration focused on developing and commercializing Zogenix’ needle-free DosePro® drug delivery technology in fields outside the firm’s core therapeutic focus of CNS disorders and pain. The partnership includes an exclusive comarketing and technology development option through which the partners will offer DosePro to pharma and biotech for development and commercialization with both pipeline products, and as a new delivery system for already marketed prescription drugs and biologics.

The DosePro technology uses compressed gas, rather than a needle, to deliver a liquid drug formulation as a thin jet through the skin, and Zogenix’ proposed deal with Battelle may give the latter an option to participate directly on further development of the DosePro technology once out-licensing has been achieved. Zogenix has already completed the design of a prototype system that it says will allow the delivery of larger dose volumes that would be needed for high-dose biological products.

“We believe this arrangement will accelerate entry into licensing agreements with major pharmaceutical companies,” states John Turanin, vp and general manager for the DosePro technology at Zogenix. “With Battelle’s expertise in product development and strong relationships with biopharmaceutical companies, we can now match DosePro technology to drug candidates in a more efficient manner by providing customizable drug delivery solutions that can effectively deliver biologics, vaccines, and other critical drugs.”

Zogenix is developing products for the treatment of central nervous system disorders and pain. Its first marketed product, Sumavel® DosePro™ (sumatriptan injection), was launched in January 2010 for the acute treatment of migraine and cluster headache. Zogenix’ lead pipeline candidate, ZX002, is an oral controlled-release formulation of hydrocodone, which is currently in Phase III clinical trials for the treatment of moderate-to-severe chronic pain in patients requiring 24-hour opioid therapy. ZX002 utilizes Elan Pharma’s Spheroidal Oral Drug Absorption System (SODAS®) technology.

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