BOSTON – The gut microbiome and its prospects for drug development have been matters of debate for a while, sharpened by the high-profile phase II failure of Seres Therapeutics Inc.'s candidate, SER-109, in the summer of 2016. A panel at Biopharm America surveyed the space in light of developments since the stumble with that candidate, composed of about 50 species of firmicutes spores derived from stool specimens from healthy donors, against recurrent Clostridium difficile infection.
Francis Collins, director of the U.S. NIH, said in a public forum that the agency is "really bullish" about precision medicine. However, while precision medicine requires mounds of data, which soon may be available, Collins said the NIH All of Us research program has drawn the interest of more than 300,000 willing participants to date, adding that the target enrollment of 1 million should be accomplished before the end of 2022.
DUBLIN – Shares in Polyphor AG dropped as much as 21% Wednesday as the company shut down two phase III trials of its lead drug candidate, murepavadin, a first-in-class intravenous antibiotic in development for hospital-acquired and ventilator-associated bacterial pneumonia (HABP/VABP).