NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 03/15/13 -- Programs developed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to speed up the approval process has been a major driver for growth within the Biotech Industry. In 2012, FDA drug approvals totaled a 15-year high of 39, over the past decade drug approvals has averaged roughly 23 a year, according to a recent Bloomberg article. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Biotechnology Industry and provides equity research on ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ACAD) and BioCryst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: BCRX).
The FDA's new "breakthrough" product designation allows new drugs to win approval after just a single round of testing, instead of the usual three. A total of three promising experimental medicines have been assigned the new status so far, while an additional 18 drugs have applied. The new designation follows three other programs -- Fast Track, Priority Review and Accelerated Approval -- each of which were designed to help bring crucial new drugs to market in a shorter amount of time.
"A breakthrough drug is one that may offer important new benefits for patients with serious or life-threatening disease who are especially in need of new safe and effective treatments," said Janet Woodcock, director of FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.
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ACADIA is a biopharmaceutical company focused on innovative treatments that address unmet medical needs in neurological and related central nervous system disorders. ACADIA has a pipeline of product candidates led by pimavanserin, which is in Phase III development as a potential first-in-class treatment for Parkinson's disease psychosis.
BioCryst Pharmaceuticals designs, optimizes and develops novel small molecule drugs that block key enzymes involved in infectious and inflammatory diseases, with the goal of addressing unmet medical needs of patients and physicians. BioCryst currently has two late-stage development programs: peramivir, a viral neuraminidase inhibitor for the treatment of influenza, and ulodesine, a purine nucleoside phosphorylase inhibitor for the treatment of gout.
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