-- Submission based on the largest Phase III program in genotype 1 (GT1) hepatitis C patients conducted to date
-- European Medicines Agency has granted AbbVie's request for accelerated assessment
NORTH CHICAGO, Illinois, May 8, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV) submitted marketing authorization applications (MAAs) to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) seeking approval for the company's investigational, all-oral, interferon-free regimen for the treatment of adult patients with chronic genotype 1 (GT1) hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. The MAAs are supported by data from the largest all-oral, interferon-free clinical program in GT1 patients conducted to date, which consists of six Phase III studies that include more than 2,300 patients in over 25 countries.
"These regulatory submissions bring us closer to offering adult genotype 1 chronic hepatitis C patients an all-oral, interferon-free regimen which has the potential to provide a promising advancement for the hepatitis C community in the European Union," said Scott Brun, M.D., vice president, Pharmaceutical Development, AbbVie. "This regulatory milestone, on the heels of our submission of a New Drug Application in the U.S., represents an important step for our pipeline."
Accelerated Assessment Granted
The EMA has granted AbbVie's request for accelerated assessment for ABT-450/ritonavir, ombitasvir (ABT-267), and dasabuvir (ABT-333), a designation that is granted to new medicines of major public health interest. Review of AbbVie's MAAs will be conducted under the centralized licensing procedure which, when finalized, provides one marketing authorization in all 28 member states of the European Union (EU). Although accelerated assessment could shorten the EMA's review time by approximately two months, it does not guarantee a positive opinion from the EMA's Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) or final approval by the European Commission. If approved, ABT-450/ritonavir, ombitasvir (ABT-267), and dasabuvir (ABT-333) could be available for marketing in the EU in the first quarter of 2015.
Globally, approximately 160 million people are chronically infected with hepatitis C and an estimated 3 million to 4 million people are newly infected each year. In Europe, approximately 17.5 million people have chronic hepatitis C, with GT1 as the predominant genotype.
About AbbVie's Investigational HCV Regimen
The AbbVie investigational regimen consists of the fixed-dose combination of ABT-450/ritonavir (150/100mg) co-formulated with ombitasvir (ABT-267) 25mg, dosed once daily, and dasabuvir (ABT-333) 250mg with or without ribavirin (weight-based), dosed twice daily. The combination of three different mechanisms of action interrupts the hepatitis C virus replication process with the goal of optimizing sustained virologic response rates across different patient populations.
Additional information about AbbVie's Phase III studies can be found on www.clinicaltrials.gov.
AbbVie's HCV Development Program
The AbbVie HCV clinical development program is intended to advance scientific knowledge and clinical care by investigating an interferon-free, all-oral regimen with and without ribavirin with the goal of producing high sustained virologic response rates in as many patients as possible, including those that typically do not respond well to treatment, such as previous non-responders to interferon-based therapy or patients with advanced liver fibrosis or cirrhosis.
ABT-450 was discovered during the ongoing collaboration between AbbVie and Enanta Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: ENTA) for hepatitis C virus protease inhibitors and regimens that include protease inhibitors. ABT-450 is being developed by AbbVie for use in combination with AbbVie's other investigational medicines for the treatment of hepatitis C.
AbbVie is a global, research-based biopharmaceutical company formed in 2013 following separation from Abbott Laboratories. The company's mission is to use its expertise, dedicated people and unique approach to innovation to develop and market advanced therapies that address some of the world's most complex and serious diseases. AbbVie employs approximately 25,000 people worldwide and markets medicines in more than 170 countries. For further information on the company and its people, portfolio and commitments, please visit www.abbvie.com. Follow @abbvie on Twitter or view careers on our Facebook or LinkedIn page.
Some statements in this news release may be forward-looking statements for purposes of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "project" and similar expressions, among others, generally identify forward-looking statements. AbbVie cautions that these forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, challenges to intellectual property, competition from other products, difficulties inherent in the research and development process, adverse litigation or government action, and changes to laws and regulations applicable to our industry.
Additional information about the economic, competitive, governmental, technological and other factors that may affect AbbVie's operations is set forth in Item 1A, "Risk Factors," in AbbVie's 2013 Annual Report on Form 10-K, which has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
AbbVie undertakes no obligation to release publicly any revisions to forward-looking statements as a result of subsequent events or developments, except as required by law.
 Comparison based on review of data from www.clinicaltrials.gov for phase 3a programs of Gilead, BMS and BI as of November 15, 2013.
 Lavanchy D. Evolving epidemiology of hepatitis C virus. Clin Microbiol Infect. 2011; 17(2):107-15.
 World Gastroenterology Organisation. World Gastroenterology Organisation Global Guidelines: Diagnosis, Management and Prevention of Hepatitis C. April 2013. http://www.worldgastroenterology.org/assets/export/userfiles/WGO_Hepatitis%20C_Final%20Version.pdf. Accessed April 25, 2014.
 EASL Clinical Practice Guidelines: management of hepatitis C virus infection. European Association for the Study of the Liver. J Hepatol. 2014;60:392-420.