I don’t know if discovery is the right word, but to me this feels like a possible breakthrough that could positively rock our allergy and anaphylaxis world. Yesterday, two pharmaceuticals (Shin Nippon Biomedical Laboratories, Japan and G2B Pharma, San Fransisco, CA) announced in a press release, Novel Nasal Epinephrine Shows Comparable Absorption to EpiPen® in a Feasibility Study, their work on a nasal epinephrine product. The successful study demonstrated how their nasal and NON-needle epinephrine formulation was absorbed through the nasal passages at the same rate as an EpiPen®!? Yup, we are talking a possible new first line of action drug for a life threatening allergic reaction that does not require a needle or auto-injectable. Clinical trials will begin in 2014 and this news is pretty exciting given how many parents I personally know who have constantly asked for an epinephrine product that does not involve needles.
special note: Upper image of woman’s profile is courtesy of Luigi Diamanti via freedigitalphotos.net. The red bad featured above is what my son is carrying on his camping trip this week!
Can a fear of needles hinder emergency response to a life threatening allergic reaction?
Ironically, yesterday I heard a story of a parent whose child was having an allergic reaction who was unable to administer the EpiPen® out of fear. Apparently, the child ate a cookie that contained tree nuts, full body hives and itchy throat symptoms were growing. The parent called 911 and was instructed to use the EpiPen®, the parent was too afraid to use it. Emergency responders arrived and instructed the parent to use the EpiPen®, who again refused. This part of the story gets fuzzy, I’m assuming the emergency responders were basic EMTs and in Nevada, basics are not allowed to administer epinephrine (that’s another whole conversation for another day), hence why they instructed the parent to administer. A neighbor heard the sirens and ran over to see what was going on. Luckily, this person was a physician and immediately administered two doses of the EpiPen® and saved the child’s life.
Clearly, this possible new nasal delivery system might be of great value! It will be years until we see the product in our hands, but it feels like there are more emergency life threatening response solutions coming our way. Personally, I would love to see a cure and no need for a new drug discovery. But….until then, let’s bring on new drug discoveries!