Find out about new drugs approved by the FDA in 2020

The FDA approved 53 novel drugs in 2020, the second highest count in over 20 years. For more on trends with deals and IPOs last year, see the news and comment section below.      

  • Asher Mullard
News

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    • Disregulation of circadian rhythms, as a result of jet lag or other lifestyle factors, can increase the risks of certain diseases. This Review analyses the different pathways involved in the regulation of the circadian clock and strategies that target the circadian systems.

      • Wei Ruan
      • Xiaoyi Yuan
      • Holger K. Eltzschig
      Review Article
    • Since the introduction of insulin almost a century ago, more than 80 peptide drugs have been approved for a wide range of diseases. This Perspective summarizes trends in peptide drug discovery, emphasizing lessons from earlier approaches as well as emerging strategies such as integrated venomics and peptide-display libraries. It also analyses the remaining challenges and the pharmaceutical landscape in which peptide drugs are particularly valuable.

      • Markus Muttenthaler
      • Glenn F. King
      • Paul F. Alewood
      Perspective
    • Natural products have historically made a major contribution to pharmacotherapy, but also present challenges for drug discovery, such as technical barriers to screening, isolation, characterization and optimization. This Review discusses recent technological developments — including improved analytical tools, genome mining and engineering strategies, and microbial culturing advances — that are enabling a revitalization of natural product-based drug discovery.

      • Atanas G. Atanasov
      • Sergey B. Zotchev
      • Claudiu T. Supuran
      Review Article
    • Protein lysine methylation is an important post-translational modification of histone and non-histone proteins. In this Review, Gozani and colleagues discuss the role of protein lysine methyltransferases, the ‘writers’ of protein lysine methylation, in a range of diseases, and the progress and potential of targeting these enzymes therapeutically. They also consider the biology of lysine methyltransferases beyond epigenetic regulation as emerging targets for drug discovery.

      • Kamakoti P. Bhat
      • H. Ümit Kaniskan
      • Or Gozani
      Review Article
    • Numerous proteins and lipids are covered in glycans, which affects the way these molecules interact. In this Review, Smith and Bertozzi discuss therapies targeting proteins that recognize glycosylation, namely the selectins and Siglecs, as well as glycan-targeted antibodies that have entered the clinic or are in development. They provide their perspectives on the future of glycobiology.

      • Benjamin A. H. Smith
      • Carolyn R. Bertozzi
      Review Article
  • When Kathy High started working on haemophilia in her academic lab at the University of North Carolina in the 1980s, she never imagined that she’d go on to co-create the company that would usher in the era of gene therapies. But, as founding President and Chief Scientific Officer of Spark Therapeutics, her work helped to validate the emergent modality. And since the FDA’s landmark 2017 approval for Spark Therapeutics’s voretigene neparvovec, for the treatment of an inherited retinal disease, the field of gene therapy has been booming. After Roche acquired Spark for US$4.8 billion in 2019, High decided it was time to return to the research lab. But the COVID-19 pandemic quickly put a damper on those plans, and High started thinking about returning to industry. Now, she has joined Asklepios BioPharmaceutical (AskBio) — recently acquired by Bayer for $2 billion upfront and up to $2 billion in milestones — as President of Therapeutics. High spoke with Asher Mullard about her career path, gene therapy manufacturing innovations and the field’s changing clinical focus.

    • Asher Mullard
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