*****If Excellagen is able to make it to market and compete directly with Regranex then Cardium could be sitting on a goldmine.*****
Not only would Excellagen be a first line treatment for the estimated 1.26 million annual foot ulcers suffered by diabetics but it could also be used as a treatment in the much broader scope of wound healing. Last month the company revealed Excellagen actually activated platelet release of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) locally at the wound site. This growth factor has been shown to play an essential role in the wound healing process, not exclusive to diabetic foot ulcers. Tapping into the broader market offers Cardium the opportunity to make significant financial gains and their approach, following FDA approval, is to license the Excellagen product line with the goal of pacing it within a larger organization or with partners who have existing commercialization, sales and marketing resources. This approach could bring about much faster returns as Cardium a fully integrated sales and marketing organization. Making Cardium even more attractive is their “exclusive access to commercial development rights for certain novel supramacromolecular polymer complexes enabling regulatable and localized topical delivery of nitric oxide for prolonged periods of one to three weeks,” something the company has said will “broaden and expand” their wound healing and tissue regeneration portfolio. More specifically, they would be able to develop a greater variety of wound healing products utilizing nitric oxide, “a physiological mediator that has been shown to play an important role in enhancing wound healing.” These products could include “granulated and powder dressings, topical creams and gels, thin films and aqueous formulations, as well as electrospun fibers for dressings and bandages.” Reinhard said the potential that exists in the development of nitric oxide therapy for wound healing and tissue regeneration could be substantial as it “opens the door for us to develop product extensions based on our formulated collagen product platform and to develop new products for other wound healing applications and in other medical settings that could include acute applications for military and emergency medical services.” Also in the works for Cardium is their DNA-based angiogenic cardiovascular biologic Generx designed for patients with coronary artery disease. Having already gone through a series of trials Generx goal is “to stimulate the growth of supplemental collateral blood vessels in the heart in order to enhance myocardial blood flow (perfusion) in patients who have insufficient blood flow due to atherosclerotic plaque build up in the coronary arteries.” The global market for the treatment of heart disease continues to grow and Cardium feels that it is positioning itself to become a viable option as it relates to coronary artery disease. Generx has been approved by the FDA for a Phase III trial in the U.S. for women with late stage coronary artery disease who are unresponsive to traditional drug therapy and are not appropriate candidates for mechanical revascularization. Earlier this week Cardium was awarded a cash grant of approximately $245,000 under the U.S. Government’s Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Project (“QTDP”) program to further its Generx clinical development program.