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Biogen’s Regulatory Applications for Nusinersen as a Treatment for Spinal Muscular Atrophy Accepted by FDA and EMA

Biogen today announced that its New Drug Application (NDA) for nusinersen, an investigational treatment for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), has been accepted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for Priority Review, and that the company’s Marketing Authorization Application (MAA) has been validated by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). Nusinersen had previously been granted Accelerated Assessment status by the EMA’s Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP). The regulatory review process for these applications has now been initiated in the U.S. and EU. Both the Priority Review and Accelerated Assessment designations can reduce the standard review time. If approved, nusinersen would be the first therapy for SMA, a leading genetic cause of infant mortality.

Biogen intends to market nusinersen under the brand name SPINRAZATM. This name has been conditionally accepted by the FDA and the CHMP and will be confirmed upon approval.

“The FDA and EMA have acknowledged the potential for nusinersen to address the urgent need for an effective SMA treatment by granting special status to the applications, and FDA has shared that they plan to act early on our NDA under an expedited review,” said Michael Ehlers, M.D., Ph.D., executive vice president, head of Research and Development at Biogen. “We are now focused on working with the agencies to hopefully bring this investigational treatment to the SMA community as quickly as possible.”

The regulatory filing packages in the U.S. and EU are based on data that demonstrate the clinically meaningful efficacy and favorable safety profile of nusinersen from multiple studies. These include the results from the interim analysis of ENDEAR, the Phase 3 study evaluating nusinersen in infantile-onset (most likely to develop Type 1) SMA, as well as open-label data in other patient populations. The ENDEAR interim analysis demonstrated that infants receiving nusinersen experienced a statistically significant improvement in the achievement of motor milestones compared to those who did not receive nusinersen. Data from the other endpoints analyzed were also consistently in favor of the treated infants. Nusinersen was generally well-tolerated, with a favorable safety profile. No adverse events (AEs) were considered related to nusinersen.

Biogen is initiating regulatory filings in other countries in the coming months.