Intended to make injections unnecessary

At this year’s BIO Convention 2024 in San Diego (June 3-6, 2024), the US pharmaceutical company Laxxon Medical, led by CEO Helmut Kerschbaumer, will be presenting its oral GLP-1 alternative for weight loss to the professional public for the first time. The abbreviation GLP-1 stands for “glucagon-like peptide-1 agonist (GLP-1)” and refers to the central active ingredient contained in weight loss medication. The products of market leaders Novo Nordisk and Eli Lilly, which were originally developed for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, have opened up a new era in the fight against obesity. The GLP-1 agonists approved for weight loss are currently only available in injectable formulations. Patients must inject them either daily or weekly. These products must also be stored under specific conditions and have a limited shelf life.

The Laxxon weight loss tablet under the product identifier “LXM.2” is designed to provide patients with a non-invasive once-a-day treatment and eliminate the need for injections in the future. With its additive 3D screen printing platform technology, SPID®, Laxxon has succeeded in processing a so-called permeation enhancer as a carrier in tablet form. These substances, which improve the bioavailability of certain molecules or make them possible in the first place, are difficult to produce into an enteric-coated oral solid using conventional methods such as direct compression or granulation. Advanced additive manufacturing technology (SPID®) enables a new generation of intelligent drug delivery systems (“DDS”) through, for example, the heterogeneous distribution of active pharmaceutical ingredients and excipients.

Research studies indicate that oral GLP-1 is just as effective as the injectable version. A 2021 study examined several clinical trials of GLP-1 and concluded that once-daily oral semaglutide (a GLP-1 agonist) is as or more effective for weight loss than injectable versions of semaglutide. Other recent research suggests that oral tablets have “similar or better efficacy and similar tolerability” compared to most injectable GLP-1 preparations.

GLP-1 market growing dynamically

Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy® was the first GLP-1 preparation to be approved by the FDA for weight loss. Since its approval in 2021, Novo Nordisk’s sales have increased by 36% to almost USD 22 billion. Eli Lilly’s share price rose 60% in 2023 ahead of the approval of its injectable weight loss drug Zepbound®. The growing optimism in the market is the result of significant prescribing of weight loss drugs, which increased by 300% in the US between 2020 and 2022. Alarming projections state that nearly half of all Americans will be obese by 2030, highlighting the need for additional preventative measures.

The global market for obesity drugs could reach 100 billion dollars by 2030, according to Goldman Sachs. With further innovation, new market entrants and patent expirations, prices for weight loss drugs are likely to fall and potentially open up new markets.

With SPID® technology, Laxxon can develop and manufacture advanced versions of new and existing pharmaceutical drugs while extending and supplementing patent protection through the technology transfer process. Laxxon’s pipeline includes ongoing work projects with major pharmaceutical companies, biotech companies and research universities.

Laxxon’s intellectual property with its licensing partner Exentis is continuously growing and currently comprises more than 180 patents and patent applications with more than 4,000 patent claims worldwide. Laxxon’s robust and growing IP portfolio protects all of the company’s assets until at least 2037.

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