) and Janssen Biologics' (Ireland) human anti-interleukin (IL)-6
monoclonal antibody, sirukumab (CNTO 136), recently moved into a
phase III program. Sirukumab is being developed for the treatment
of moderately to severely active rheumatoid arthritis in
Glaxo and Janssen said that the phase III program consists of
two studies - SIRROUND-T and SIRROUND-D. The multicenter,
randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel group
SIRROUND-T study will evaluate sirukumab's efficacy on the basis of
the reduction of the signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis in
patients with active rheumatoid arthritis who are refractory or
intolerant to the anti-tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α therapy.
Meanwhile, the multicenter, randomized, double-blind,
placebo-controlled, parallel group SIRROUND-D study will evaluate
sirukumab's efficacy on the basis of the reduction of the signs and
symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and inhibition of radiographic
progression in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis who are
refractory to disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs).
Janssen Biologics, a part of
Johnson & Johnson's
) Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies, has an agreement with Glaxo for
the development of sirukumab. The co-development and
co-commercialization license agreement for sirukumab was signed in
Johnson & Johnson already has a strong presence in the
rheumatoid arthritis market, which represents significant
commercial potential. About 1.5 million people in the US and more
than 23.5 million people across the globe are estimated to suffer
from rheumatoid arthritis. Johnson & Johnson has two products
in its portfolio for rheumatoid arthritis - Remicade and Simponi.
Johnson & Johnson is looking to strengthen its presence further
in rheumatoid arthritis through the development of sirukumab.
We currently have a Neutral recommendation on Johnson &
Johnson, which carries a Zacks #3 Rank (short-term 'Hold' rating).
We, however, have an Underperform recommendation on Glaxo, which
carries a Zacks #4 Rank (short-term 'Sell rating). Glaxo's second
quarter results missed expectations. The company is facing
headwinds like generic competition and EU pricing pressure.
GLAXOSMITHKLINE (GSK): Free Stock Analysis
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