Frost & Sullivan Commends Altea Therapeutics for Extending the Frontiers of Transdermal Drug Delivery

Published: Apr 03, 2007

PALO ALTO, Calif., April 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Frost & Sullivan has presented Atlanta-based Altea Therapeutics with the 2007 Frost & Sullivan Technology Innovation Award in the field of transdermal drug delivery for its development of the PassPort(TM) System, a new breakthrough technology that enables painless delivery through the skin of drugs that until now were administered only by needle injection, including water-soluble drugs, proteins, nucleic acids and carbohydrates.

The PassPort System has dramatically extended the range of diseases that can be treated using transdermal patches. This novel technology has presented a great opportunity for the Company in addressing significant medical needs using a method of drug administration proven to lead to high patient compliance.

"The Altea Therapeutics PassPort System redefines the scope of transdermal delivery by enabling a cost-effective, non-invasive, and controllable way to deliver a wide range of drugs via the skin," says Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Bhuvaneashwar Subramanian. "As the solution that finally delivers on the promise of delivery through the skin, the new PassPort System makes more patient-friendly treatments possible for a number of different conditions."

Although transdermal patches were introduced two decades ago in response to increasing demand for a more comfortable delivery system than needle injections, they are restricted to a limited number of molecules that can be delivered through the skin. Typically, the skin only allows the penetration of lipid-soluble drugs that have a molecular weight of less than approximately 500 daltons.

Various modes of transdermal drug delivery such as iontophoresis, ultrasound, microneedles, and dermabrasion have endeavored to meet the need for a more convenient form of administering larger molecules. However, these approaches have limitations relating to efficiency and reproducibility. The PassPort System has been able to overcome these challenges.

Comprising a PassPort Patch and a reusable Applicator, the technology itself is surprisingly simple to use. The patient clips the patch onto the Applicator, places it against the skin, and presses an activation button. Then, as the patient takes the Applicator away from the skin, the transdermal patch is automatically positioned on the skin to allow delivery to commence.

The Applicator can also be configured to record valuable information about patient dosing, including the date and time when the transdermal patch was applied to the skin. The physician can use this information to verify patient compliance and provide proper disease management. Other value-added attributes include the ability to equip the Applicator with dose reminder and dose lockout features to prevent drug overdosing, misuse and even abuse.

"With its superior functionality and innovative features, the Passport System can potentially be employed for an extensive array of applications ranging from delivering small water-soluble molecules such as apomorphine hydrochloride to treat Parkinson's disease to proteins such as insulin for diabetes management," says Subramanian. "It can also be used for macromolecules such as parathyroid hormone to treat osteoporosis as well as vaccines for disease prevention."

Each year Frost & Sullivan presents this Award to a company that has carried out new research, which has resulted in noteworthy innovations. These innovations have or are expected to significantly contribute to the industry in terms of adoption, change, and competitive positioning. This award recognizes the quality and depth of a company's research and development program as well as the vision and risk-taking that enabled it to undertake such an endeavor.

Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognize companies in a variety of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation, customer service, and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis, and extensive secondary research in order to identify best practices in the industry.

About Altea Therapeutics

Altea Therapeutics is an emerging specialty pharmaceutical company developing and commercializing products based on a new transdermal patch technology that can deliver sustained therapeutic levels of highly water-soluble drugs, carbohydrates, nucleic acids, peptides and proteins through the skin in a convenient, painless, and cost-effective manner. Altea Therapeutics has demonstrated in several clinical studies that its patented PassPort Transdermal System achieves what existing patches are unable to do, namely the continuous delivery through the skin of compounds that are typically administered by needle injections.

The company is conducting several clinical trials in the United States for its products, including for an insulin transdermal patch that provides continuous delivery of basal levels of insulin for people with diabetes, a fentanyl citrate transdermal patch that enables rapid and safe management of moderate to severe pain, and an apomorphine hydrochloride transdermal patch for the convenient management of advanced Parkinson's disease. Furthermore, the company is in pre-clinical development with a number of product candidates, including a low-molecular-weight heparin patch for thromboses, a parathyroid hormone analog transdermal patch for osteoporosis, and an atypical antipsychotic transdermal patch for the management of psychoses. Additional information about Altea Therapeutics may be found at

About Frost & Sullivan

Frost & Sullivan, a global growth consulting company, has been partnering with clients to support the development of innovative strategies for more than 40 years. The company's industry expertise integrates growth consulting, growth partnership services, and corporate management training to identify and develop opportunities. Frost & Sullivan serves an extensive clientele that includes Global 1000 companies, emerging companies, and the investment community by providing comprehensive industry coverage that reflects a unique global perspective and combines ongoing analysis of markets, technologies, econometrics, and demographics. For more information, visit

Contact: Stacie Jones 210.247.2450

Frost & Sullivan

CONTACT: Stacie Jones of Frost & Sullivan, +1-210-247-2450,

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