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AstraZeneca’s severe asthma treatment granted breakthrough therapy designation

A breakthrough therapy designation is designed to expedite the development and review of medicines that are intended to treat a serious and have shown promise in early-stage clinical trials

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An estimated 35mln people around the world suffer from severe asthma

AstraZeneca PLC’s (LON:AZN) tezepelumab severe asthma treatment has been granted breakthrough therapy designation by the US Food and Drug Administration.

A BTD is designed to expedite the development and review of medicines that are intended to treat a serious and have shown promise in early-stage clinical trials.

Tezepelumab was awarded the designation after data from a phase IIb trial showed a significant reduction in the annual asthma exacerbation rate compared with a placebo.

READ: Astra's lupus drug falls at final hurdle

Current treatments only target a certain subset of patients but Astra reckons its drug can treat all sufferers.

Tezepelumab, which is being developed in collaboration with Amgen Inc (NASDAQ:AMGN), is currently in the phase III PATHFINDER clinical trial programme.

Chief medical officer Sean Bohen said: “Tezepelumab is exciting because it has the potential to treat a broad population of severe asthma patients, including those ineligible for currently-approved biologic therapies.

“The Breakthrough Therapy Designation will help us bring tezepelumab to patients as quickly as possible.”

AstraZeneca shares edged 0.2% to 5,645p on Friday morning.

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