Enable Injections: innovating to share in the success of biologic therapies
Based on its unique Enable enFuse technology, Enable Injections is developing body-worn small devices that enable patients to self-administer high-viscosity drugs conveniently throughout the day upon activation.
Enable Injections is a combination product company that is synonymous with large-volume wear- able injectors. When biopharma companies want to make their biologics more convenient for patients, they partner with Enable Injections to combine these drugs with body-worn self-administration devices. The alliances formed support product differentiation and allow Enable Injections to share in the commercial success of biologic therapies without exposing it to the risks of drug development.
Ohio-based Enable Injections has established this promising platform on the strength of its devices. While multiple companies support the delivery of drug volumes of 3 ml and under, few businesses have devices that cater for larger volumes that cannot be quickly administered under the skin. This has allowed Enable Injections, which specializes in 5 to 50 ml volumes, to corner a growing market.
This growth is built on sustainable trends. Biologics dominate pipelines and portfolios. These drugs unlock novel biology, enabling them to treat complex, unmet medical needs and establishing the sec- tor as the most active in the industry. This activity is causing the field to become increasingly competitive, driving companies to seek ways to differentiate their products from the pack.
More convenient administration is a go-to option for companies seeking to differentiate products, but this is challenging owing to the nature of biologics. Biologics are viscous, concentrated, and, increasingly, high-volume products. Despite industry-wide interest in more convenient routes of administration, the characteristics of biologics mean intravenous delivery remains the norm, forcing companies to supply products in a form that is inconvenient for patients and expensive for health-care systems.
The leader in a fast-growing sector
Enable Injections offers an alternative: Enable enFuse. The small device is loaded with the biologic, stuck to the skin, and activated, after which it delivers a con- trolled, subcutaneous flow of the drug. Patients can self-administer the biologic and continue with their days while it is delivered, freeing patients from the need to sit for hours to receive their treatment (Fig. 1).
Large-volume wearable injectors have proved to be an attractive proposition to companies that want to differentiate new biologics or improve approved, intravenously delivered drugs, leading analysts to tip the market to achieve a compound annual growth rate of 23% until 2024. Enable Injections’ multiple partnerships suggest it will be a key driver of this growth.
These are true partnerships, not supply agreements. The details of combination product regulations mean biopharma companies cannot simply buy off-the- shelf delivery devices. Rather, they need to partner with combination product companies that can design devices customized to the volumes and flow rates of their biologics. The drugs and devices comprising these combination products are inseparable and will reach the market simultaneously. To develop such assets, drug developers must form symbiotic relation- ships with combination product companies.
Fig. 1 | Enable enFuse on the body. Loaded with the biologic, the small enFuse device is conveniently stuck onto the skin, where it is activated to deliver a controlled, subcutaneous flow of the drug. The selfadministration of the biologic by the patient means they can continue their daily routines without the need to sit for hours to receive their treatment.
Enable Injections has shown it can form such relationships. Two of Enable Injections’ partners are now running clinical trials of combination products that use customized versions of its technology. More partnered candidates are advancing down the pipeline. The symbiotic relationship between Enable Injections and its partners means these drug candidates are in effect moving down Enable Injections’ own pipeline. This has implications for the type of company Enable Injections is and the sales it will generate. When products based on Enable Injections’ technology reach the market, it will take a cut of the profits. In this way, the company and its stockholders may share in the success of blockbuster biologics without facing the inherent risks of drug development.
Positioned for long-term growth
By overcoming the barriers to high-volume subcutaneous delivery, Enable Injections has placed itself in a strong position as companies seek to improve the administration of biologics. Enable Injections is continuing to innovate, too, notably through its Smart enFuse Bluetooth sensor. The sensor logs the start and end times of administration, helping patients to adhere to regimens. Enable Injections has also de-identified the data, enabling biopharma companies to feed these data into platforms for analysis.
These and other innovations will ensure Enable Injections remains the partner of choice for companies that want to differentiate biologics. With thou- sands of biologics in development and manufacturers of approved drugs seeking ways to differentiate products from innovative and biosimilar competitors, Enable Injections’ leadership position should secure it an accelerating flow of partnering opportunities across a range of therapeutic areas in the years to come.
These opportunities will lead to the expansion of Enable Injections’ partnered pipeline, setting the stage for new revenue streams as combination products based on its technology come to market.
Joshua Gordon, Alliance Manager
Cincinnati, OH, USA