-- Let's interrupt the non-stop (and frankly, repetitive) chatter about
hepatitis C drug price wars and turn our attention again to Regulus Therapeutics and its experimental, injectable microRNA therapy RG-101.
New trial data from a group of hepatitis C patients treated with a
higher dose of RG-101 are expected in early February, according to
Regulus. The company's stock price doubled last October when
the first slug of RG-101 data were announced, so it's a good time to
review what we know about the drug and attempt to determine what the
updated results might reveal.
RG-101 uses small (micro) snippets of RNA to disrupt the
replication of the hepatitis C virus and lead to its elimination from
the liver. Regulus views RG-101 as a potentially new way to treat
hepatitis C with a single or even a few simple and easily tolerated
injections. It's a controversial idea because the best hepatitis C
therapy today are already considered to be incredibly convenient. Gilead Sciences' Harvoni requires patients to take a single, daily pill for eight or 12 weeks. No injections are needed. Abbvie's
Viekira Pak is just as effective but with a few more pills. [RA Capital
portfolio manager Peter Kolchinsky owns Regulus and wrote about the bull thesis for RG-101 earlier this month].
Labels: microRNA, Regulus, RG-101