170 pages

Date published 
April 2007

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Metabolic and Inflammatory Disease R&D Overview


Cover ImageMetabolic and Inflammatory Disease R&D: An Assessment of 5 Highly Promising Therapeutic Classes 

By Peter Norman, MBA, PhD




At any given time, a number of drug targets are attracting considerable interest from different pharmaceutical companies. The emergence of such targets as hot topics of research usually becomes apparent before the introduction of clinical candidates by a rapid increase in the level of patenting and research activity directed toward them. Metabolic and Inflammatory Disease R&D: An Assessment of 5 Highly Promising Therapeutic Classes, by Peter Norman, MBA, PhD, a new report from Insight Pharma Reports, details targets of high interest that are primarily of relevance to inflammatory or metabolic diseases and toward which few, if any, compounds have progressed into Phase II studies.

Such extensive patenting and research focus is no guarantee of commercial success, as illustrated by the recent examples of lipoxygenase inhibitors and leukotriene antagonists—with the more intensive activity directed at the former providing negligible commercial returns while the latter led to 3 successful products. To help deal with such uncertainty, Metabolic and Inflammatory Disease R&D: An Assessment of 5 Highly Promising Therapeutic Classes identifies and assesses the potentially successful efforts in each of 5 different areas:

  • Chemokine antagonists
  • Toll-like receptors
  • Melanin-concentrating hormone antagonists
  • Melanocortin MC4 agonists
  • 11b-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase inhibitors

Selection of these 5 compound classes was based on an assessment of the levels of patenting and R&D activity directed against various targets currently of considerable interest in creating new agents for the treatment of inflammatory, autoimmune, or metabolic disorders. For instance:

  • In January 2007, 11 chemokine antagonists from 9 different companies were in clinical development for the treatment of inflammatory disorders, with 2 of these drugs being the focus of high-value commercial deals. Many more chemokine antagonists are either in preclinical development or lead optimization, and most of the major pharmaceutical companies have current R&D efforts directed at chemokine receptor targets.
  • For the 10 identified toll-like receptors (TLRs), current activity centers around development of both TLR agonists and antagonists to treat conditions ranging from sepsis to cancer. Metabolic and Inflammatory Disease R&D: An Assessment of 5 Highly Promising Therapeutic Classes provides a thorough analysis of these TLR potentials, plus succinct charts of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats for these and other products in development.

Overview Image 2

Each of the 5 target classes considered in this report has the potential to provide high-revenue drugs, for the treatment of inflammatory disease, obesity, and metabolic syndrome. Details are provided for the following diseases:

Inflammatory Diseases

  • Respiratory diseases
  • Arthritis

Metabolic Diseases

  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Metabolic Syndrome
  • Lipid Disorders

Metabolic and Inflammatory Disease R&D: An Assessment of 5 Highly Promising Therapeutic Classes details and assesses the efforts of more than 20 major pharmaceutical companies and more than 25 additional companies to manage the development of potential metabolic/inflammatory therapeutic products through R&D into the clinic. Leading researchers at companies at the forefront of R&D in these target areas offer their views of the challenges, the applications, and the relevant clinical data that will determine their potential use in medicine.

This report is an essential tool for individuals involved in the research, development, licensing, and portfolio management of potential therapeutics for metabolic and inflammatory diseases.

About the Author

Peter Norman, MBA, PhD, spent 20 years in the pharmaceutical industry in research and development and competitive intelligence before becoming an independent pharmaceutical consultant, analyst, and author. Dr. Norman has authored a number of original scientific papers in major journals and is an inventor with 11 patent applications. He provides consultancy services to several European, American, and Japanese companies and regularly reviews drugs and patents for Thomson Current Drugs and Ashley Publications. Dr. Norman has written reports analyzing most therapeutic areas. He can be contacted at peter.norman2@btinternet.com.