Takeda says Ka Pow IBD

Takeda says Ka Pow IBD

Takeda worked with the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America and Marvel Custom Solutions to create its first-ever pharma company-sponsored superhero to shine a light on the many sufferers of IBD who hide their disease. The disease awareness campaign includes the graphic illustration series with IBD-suffering hero Samarium, as well as digital paid ads and social media shares.

Stephanie Brown, VP of Takeda’s specialty business unit in the U.S., said in a statement that “our hope is that patients will feel inspired to have the raw and real conversations they need to have with healthcare professionals, family, and friends, to increase awareness, understanding, and to strive for the best care for their IBD.”

The first-in-the-series online comic, out now, will be made into actual comic books and distributed at some events, including several Comic-Con festivals that Takeda will attend, a Takeda spokeswoman told FiercePharmaMarketing. She said more stories are planned for the graphic illustration series, including global editions. And for every view of the online graphic at, Takeda will donate $1 to CCFA, up to $25,000.

Takeda markets IBD biologic Entyvio, although that brand is not mentioned in this disease awareness campaign. Entyvio, which did launch a branded ad campaign earlier this year, faces competition in a crowded IBD space where it’s up against established Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis brands such as AbbVie’s Humira, Amgen’s Enbrel, and Johnson & Johnson’s Remicade and follow-up Simponi.

Takeda marketers were introduced to Marvel through a mutual agency partner. The ideas for the graphic were then generated in an all-day brainstorming session that included Takeda and CCFA representatives, along with patients who have Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis.

The initial response has been “incredibly positive” from patients, the spokeswoman said, pointing out that “even when you work in a heavily regulated environment, you can still be creative and create something interesting and compelling enough for people to want to share it.”

Takeda’s press release

Johnson & Johnsons

Johnson Johnsons psoriasis drug Stelara eases Crohns disease

Johnson & Johnson’s Stelara psoriasis drug has shown effectiveness against Crohn’s disease in a second late-stage trial, the company said on Friday, bolstering prospects of its approval for the additional use.
The Phase 3 study showed Stelara induced remissions in moderate to severe Crohn’s disease patients who had previously failed to benefit from TNF inhibitors, a leading class of medicines for the inflammatory bowel disease. Those treatments include J&J’s own Remicade and AbbVie Inc’s Humira.

Johnson & Johnsons
Johnson & Johnsons

J&J presented the favorable data on Friday at the 11th Congress of the European Crohn’s and Colitis Organization in Amsterdam. In October, the company said Stelara was significantly more effective than placebo in another study of patients with moderate to severe Crohn’s symptoms.

Stelara is now awaiting U.S. approval as a treatment for the condition, based on results of that earlier trial.

The drug, which works by blocking two inflammation-causing proteins called IL-12 and IL-23, is one of J&J’s biggest, with sales last year of almost $2.5 billion. It is approved in the United States for adults with moderate to severe psoriasis, an inflammatory skin condition caused by an overactive immune system.

Crohn’s is a chronic inflammatory condition in the gastrointestinal tract, causing abdominal pain, diarrhea, weight loss and fever. It affects about 700,000 Americans and nearly 250,000 Europeans, J&J said.
Patients in the 741-patient study received either of two intravenous doses of Stelara, or of a placebo. After six weeks, 34 percent of patients receiving either Stelara dose achieved a target reduction in Crohn’s symptoms, compared with 22 percent of those taking a placebo.

Read More: Johnson Johnsons psoriasis drug Stelara eases Crohns disease

Johnson and Johnson

Stelara fares well in Crohns disease

TRENTON, N.J. Johnson & Johnson’s immune disorder drug Stelara significantly reduced symptoms of the inflammatory bowel condition Crohn’s disease with just one infusion in about half the patients tested, according to the company.

The results, released Monday, are the first from multiple late-stage studies normally the last stage before seeking regulatory approval for Crohn’s, which J&J plans to do later this year. Stelara, on the market since 2009, is approved for treating plaque psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.

Besides giving Crohn’s patients a new option, the additional approval could shore up vulnerable sales in J&J’s biggest franchise, drugs for disorders in which the immune system attacks the body’s own tissue. That also could give J&J a boost in the fiercely competitive category, which is led by the world’s top-selling drug, Humira.

Biologic drugs Stelara, Simponi and Remicade, J&J’s oldest immune disorder medicine, bring the company more than $10 billion a year combined and treat conditions including rheumatoid arthritis and ulcerative colitis.

They compete in various conditions with rival AbbVie Inc.’s Humira, which has more than $13 billion in annual sales and treats seven immune disorders, as well as other drugs including Enbrel, sold by Amgen Inc. and Pfizer Inc.

The injectable drugs have various dosing schedules and work by different mechanisms, neutralizing different immune system proteins to reduce the inflammation that triggers symptoms and so limit complications.

They’re all genetically engineered, powerful and can cause serious side effects, including liver and heart problems, some cancers and infections that can be deadly. They’re also expensive: For psoriasis patients, Stelara costs $32,500 to $65,000 a year without insurance, depending on the dose.

J&J’s Remicade, approved for Crohn’s and five other disorders, is its top drug with sales of about $6.5 billion annually. That’s dipping because biosimilar competition — sort-of generic versions of biologic drugs “manufactured” in living cells — has begun elsewhere. It could hit in the U.S. after Remicade’s patent expires in September 2018.

In the company-funded Stelara study, which gave an “induction” treatment meant to bring Crohn’s under control, 628 patients got a single infusion of Stelara at one of two doses, or a placebo infusion. Eight weeks later, 47 percent of patients getting a low Stelara dose and 58 percent getting a high dose had major symptom improvement, compared with 32 percent of those receiving placebo.

One of the other soon-to-be-completed Crohn’s studies is giving patients maintenance doses of Stelara every 12 weeks to see how they fare longer term.
About 700,000 Americans have Crohn’s, which is incurable and causes abdominal pain, diarrhea, rectal bleeding and other nasty symptoms. Its cause is unknown.

Johnson & Johnson Stelara fares well in Crohns disease