(RTTNews) - Israel-based biopharmaceutical company PROLOR Biotech Inc. (PBTH: News ) is focused on developing bio-better long-lasting versions of existing therapeutic drugs.The core technology underlying the company's pipeline is CTP technology. The carboxyl terminal peptide, or CTP for short, when attached to a therapeutic protein, extends the time that the protein is active in the body, reducing the required frequency of administration. The longer a protein remains in the system and is active, the more it helps the patient. Therapeutic proteins are also known as biopharmaceuticals. There are 75 FDA-approved therapeutic proteins and more than 500 additional proteins are under development.
PROLOR originally licensed the CTP technology from Washington University in Saint Louis in 2002 for use with only 11 therapeutic proteins. Later in 2005, the company expanded the licensing agreement with the Washington University paving way to apply the CTP technology to all human therapeutic proteins and peptides, except four endocrine proteins - luteinizing hormone, follicle stimulating hormone, thyroid stimulating hormone, and hCG (human chorionic gonadotrophin) - that had already been licensed to a Dutch firm Organon, later acquired by Merck & Co. Inc. (MRK), following its merger with Schering-Plough.
Early this year, PROLOR licensed yet another technology that boosts the half-life and biological activity of small molecule candidates as well as peptides and proteins. The technology known as Reversible PEGylation was licensed from Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel and is believed to be complementary to the core CTP platform.
For readers who are new to PROLOR, which was formerly known as Modigene, here's an overview of the company's drug pipeline and upcoming catalysts...
The company has one product under clinical development and five products in pre-clinical stage.
Human growth hormone hGH-CTP is under phase II testing in growth hormone deficient adults. hGH-CTP has orphan drug designation in the U.S.
The market for human growth hormone is valued at $3 billion and is estimated to be growing at a rate of 7% annually. The current regimen of treating growth hormone deficient adults is seven consecutive daily injections of currently marketed hGH.
In April of this year, the company reported positive interim data from the phase II trial of hGH-CTP. The interim results revealed that a single injection of hGH-CTP can replace 7 daily injections of hGH. The phase II trial in adults with growth hormone deficiency will be completed this year and head for phase III registration trial in the first or second quarter of 2012.