You are here

Janssen to Discontinue Hepatitis C Development Program

Johnson & Johnson unit will focus on hepatitis B instead

Janssen Sciences Ireland UC will discontinue further development of the investigational hepatitis C virus treatment regimen JNJ-4178, a combination of three direct acting antivirals—AL-335, odalasvir, and simeprevir.

Ongoing phase 2 studies with JNJ-4178 will be completed as planned, but there will be no additional development thereafter. This “strategic decision” was made “in light of the increasing availability of a number of highly effective therapies addressing the medical need in hepatitis C,” the company said.

"Going forward, our hepatitis R&D efforts will focus on chronic hepatitis B, where a high unmet medical need still exists. Our scientists are energized by this challenge and our research ambition is to achieve a functional cure of hepatitis B, which affects over a quarter of a billion people globally," said Lawrence M. Blatt, PhD, Global Therapeutic Area Head, Infectious Disease Therapeutics, Janssen.

Janssen pioneered the advancement of the first innovations in hepatitis C for nearly a decade when it codeveloped telaprevir, a first-in-class protease inhibitor used in combination therapy for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus. In collaboration with Medivir AB, Janssen subsequently developed and launched the second generation protease inhibitor simeprevir (Olysio).

Sources: Janssen; September 11, 2017; Medivir; September 11, 2017.

More Headlines

Latest failure brings amyloid hypothesis into question
Guidance published on how to best design coverage for treatment of the smallest, most vulnerable victims of the opioid crisis
Agency plans to respond after receipt of letter of concern
Continuous nerve stimulation helps to alleviate withdrawal symptoms
Polypharmacy, including both prescription and OTC drugs, increase risk
Agent decreases the chance of infection due to chemo-induced febrile neutropenia
But some in industry disagree with the idea
Newer data and statistical methods can improve diagnosis and prescribing
A modified form of adoptive cell transfer targets mutations