Researchers at the Indiana University School of Medicine plan to launch a large clinical trial of an experimental two-drug combination for treating late-stage ovarian cancer. The drug combo produced a positive effect in 70 percent of patients in a Phase 2 trial and the IU researchers said they may have discovered biomarkers that could help identify women who would respond best to the therapy. The therapy combines two chemotherapy agents, decitabine with carboplatin. The IU researchers, led by Dr. Daniela Matei, are using it for women who have become resistant to carboplatin after multiple rounds of chemotherapy. IU is now seeking grant funding for a Phase 3 trial, in which the combo therapy will be compared against other approved therapies for ovarian cancer. Their research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute, Walther Cancer Foundation in Indianapolis and the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation.
DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. plans to spend $27 million on manufacturing and research equipment to grow its orthopedic implant operation in Warsaw, Ind. The expansion will add no jobs to DePuy’s 1,100-person work force, but the Warsaw City Council has approved a 10-year property tax abatement on the equipment. DePuy spokeswoman Jessica Masuga told The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne that the equipment will improve efficiency. DePuy is a subsidiary of New Jersey-based Johnson & Johnson.
West Lafayette-based Endocyte Inc. raised about $66.8 million in a secondary public offering of nearly 6.7 million shares of company stock. Shares for the offering, which began in mid-July, were priced at $12.26 each. Endocyte, which also has offices in Indianapolis, said it intends to seek permission to sell its ovarian cancer drug in Europe on a limited basis. The decision to proceed came after consultation with the European Medicines Agency and written advice from the regulators, Endocyte said in April. Endocyte shares had more than doubled in price after its initial public offering in February, before sliding in the recent market-wide decline in stocks.
Rochester Medical Implants will move its 28 employees from Rochester to Noblesville. Fulton Economic Development Corp. director Terry Lee said company officials attributed the decision to an inability to recruit needed employees to Rochester and better proximity to customers in the Indianapolis area. The Rochester Sentinel reported that a company co-owner had previously discussed plans for expanding on its eight-acre site in that city. Lee said some of the company's workers plan on transferring to the new location, with the move expected to happen by October. Rochester is about 75 miles north of Noblesville.