Pearl Therapeutics drug beats blockbuster COPD drug in PhIIb

Just weeks after banking a $69 million venture round, Redwood City, CA-based Pearl Therapeutics says that its lead drug bested a blockbuster standard therapy for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in a critical Phase IIb study.

The primary assessment for this study was change in lung function following one week of dosing, according to a release from Pearl. "Both doses of PT003 were superior to Spiriva" (a $3 billion therapy) as well as Foradil and a placebo. "In addition to FEV1 AUC, which assesses overall improvement in lung function over the duration of treatment, Pearl measured peak FEV1 on days one and seven, which measures the maximum improvement in lung function observed during the assessment period. Both doses of PT003 were superior to Spiriva and Foradil on day one."

"Being able to increase lung function 10-15 percent can be difference between sitting around all day versus going to work and doing normal activities," Rosen tells Xconomy. "This is as good as, or better than, what we had hoped for."

As the San Francisco Business Times notes, Pearl still has four more Phase IIb studies to run through mid-2012. But the biotech isn't waiting for all the data to see if it can strike a lucrative partnership deal. "Over the next year we will be looking for that partner or a combination of partners in different geographies," Rosen told the Business Times.

- check out the Pearl release
- read the report from the San Francisco Business Times
- here's the story from Xconomy