30. Xerava


Active ingredient: eravacycline
Disease: complicated intra-abdominal infections
Peak sales estimate: $340 million
Approved: Aug. 27
Company: Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals

The scoop: Xerava is antibiotic-focused Tetraphase’s first approved drug, and it came at a time when Big Pharma companies are bailing out of antibiotics research. The company used technology pioneered at Harvard University to create a tetracycline that can overcome resistant pathogens. In two phase 3 studies in complicated intra-abdominal infections, the drug matched up to two widely prescribed carbapenems: Merck & Co.’s Invanz (ertapenem) and Pfizer’s Merrem (meropenem). Increased use of carbapenems and some older tetracyclines has led to more resistance, said Tetraphase Chief Medical Officer Larry Tsai. Xerava’s label allows it to be used even if the pathogen causing the infection hasn’t yet been identified. Plus, it doesn’t require dosing adjustments in patients with impaired kidneys. However, the drug had failed in a previous phase 3 in complicated urinary tract infections. The drug was launched in the U.S. in October at the wholesale acquisition cost of $175 per day. H.C. Wainwright analyst Ed Arce has pegged a peak sales estimate of $340 million for it in the U.S. and EU. — Angus Liu

30. Xerava

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