Pharming gets orphan status for transgenic therapy

The small but growing field of transgenic drug development took another step forward today with the announcement that Dutch biotech company Pharming has received the FDA's orphan drug status for an experimental therapy contained in the milk of specially bred rabbits. The company has obtained orphan designations on recombinant human C1 inhibitor (rhC1INH) for two separate disease indications--the prevention and treatment of Delayed Graft Function after solid organ transplantation and the treatment of Capillary Leakage Syndrome. The FDA's move came shortly after GTC BioTherapeutics won the EMEA's approval of a new therapy developed in transgenic goat milk. In transgenics, genetically modified animals are used to develop new therapies that can be produced at significantly lower costs.

- read the AP report on Pharming