More Than 100 Sites, 700 Patients Have Participated in Clinical Trials to Determine Whether Avid's Molecular Imaging Agent Florbetapir F 18 Can Detect Alzheimer's Disease
PHILADELPHIA and DUBLIN, Ohio, March 25, 2010 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Currently, Alzheimer's disease cannot be definitively diagnosed until after death, when a brain autopsy is performed on a patient and evidence of beta-amyloid plaque deposits in the brain – which are a characteristic pathology of the disease – can be found. Accurate diagnosis during life can be challenging, particularly in the early stages of Alzheimer's, when symptoms are mild and non-definitive. However, Avid Radiopharmaceuticals, Inc. (Avid) and Cardinal Health are working together to change that.
Avid and Cardinal Health today announced that more than 100 clinical centers and more than 700 patients have now participated in a Phase III clinical trial that is testing whether Avid's molecular imaging agent Florbetapir F 18 can detect Alzheimer's disease in living patients. Florbetapir F 18 (also known as 18F AV-45 and Florbetapir) is used with positron emission tomography (PET) technology to detect beta-amyloid plaque deposits in the brain.
A critical factor in the successful enrollment of patients in these extensive Florbetapir clinical trials has been Cardinal Health's ability to manufacture and deliver fluorine 18 (F 18), the raw material needed to create imaging agents like Florbetapir. Because F-18's potency quickly begins to diminish immediately after it is produced, it needs to be manufactured in close proximity to the clinical imaging sites where it will be administered to patients.
Operating the largest network of radiopharmacies in the United States, Cardinal Health can safely and efficiently manufacture and distribute F 18 to more than 85 percent of all U.S. hospitals within three hours. The company's unmatched nuclear pharmacy scale, combined with its comprehensive fleet and logistics capabilities have played a critical role in enabling patients, hospitals, clinics and research facilities from around the nation to participate in Avid's groundbreaking studies.
"Over the past two years, Cardinal Health's broad network of nuclear pharmacy and manufacturing sites has allowed us to test the efficacy of important new molecular imaging agents like Florbetapir in clinical studies throughout the United States," said Avid's president and CEO, Daniel M. Skovronsky, MD, PhD. "This partnership has enabled us to effectively collaborate with imaging and neuropsychiatric specialists and the broader pharmaceutical industry to evaluate whether our Florbetapir beta-amyloid PET imaging agent can provide us a window into the Alzheimer's pathological process at its earliest, pre-symptomatic stages."
The two companies look forward to continuing to work together to realize their shared commitment to advancing the future of molecular imaging.
"We're proud to support Avid in its quest to leverage molecular imaging to change the way chronic diseases are diagnosed and managed," said John Rademacher, president and general manager of Cardinal Health's Nuclear Pharmacy Services business. "By working with forward-thinking innovators like Avid to quickly and cost-effectively evaluate the efficacy of agents in the clinical trial phase of their development, we hope to also play a key role in expediting novel imaging agents like Florbetapir into commercialization following their FDA approval."
About Avid Radiopharmaceuticals, Inc.
Avid Radiopharmaceuticals is a leader in the development of molecular imaging products with the potential for earlier and more effective detection, diagnosis and monitoring of major chronic human diseases. Based in Philadelphia, PA, the company is a pioneer in the development of molecular imaging agents for Alzheimer's disease that could lead to earlier diagnosis and better evaluation of drugs designed to prevent or reverse beta-amyloid plaque build-up in the brain. Avid is currently conducting Phase III clinical studies of Florbetapir for imaging amyloid plaques in Alzheimer's disease, and is in Phase I and II trials with 18F-AV-133 for imaging the vesicular monoamine transporter (VMAT2) in diseases involving dopaminergic degeneration (Parkinson's disease and Dementia with Lewy Bodies) and beta cell dysfunction (Type I and Type II Diabetes Mellitus). More information about Avid is available at www.avidrp.com.
About Cardinal Health
Headquartered in Dublin, Ohio, Cardinal Health, Inc. (NYSE: CAH) is a Fortune 18 health care services company that improves the cost-effectiveness of health care. As the business behind health care, Cardinal Health helps pharmacies, hospitals and ambulatory care sites focus on patient care while reducing costs, improving efficiency and quality, and increasing profitability. As one of the largest health care companies in the world, Cardinal Health is an essential link in the health care supply chain, providing pharmaceuticals and medical products to more than 40,000 locations each day. The company is also a leading manufacturer of medical and surgical products, including gloves, surgical apparel and fluid management products. In addition, the company supports the growing diagnostic industry by supplying medical products to clinical laboratories and operating the nation's largest network of radiopharmacies that dispense products to aid in the early diagnosis and treatment of disease. Cardinal Health employs more than 30,000 people worldwide. More information about the company may be found at cardinalhealth.com.
SOURCE: Cardinal Health, Inc.