FDA approves first-ever nasal spray to fight opioid overdose
- The FDA recently approved Adapt Pharma's nasal spray for opioid overdose treatment. The product, called Narcan, is a spray formulation of nalaxone and is expected to launch in January.
- Although this is the first nasal formulation of nalaxone, the drug has been in use for roughly 45 years as an injectable.
- Opioid overdose has increased four-fold since 1999, leading to roughly 23,500 deaths in the United States in 2013, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
This is a perfect example of using an innovative approach in drug delivery to answer an unmet medical need. Nalaxone has been around for years but quickly procuring and administering the injectable version when an overdose situation unfolds can be challenging. Narcan will be available to group purchasers, including law enforcement agencies, departments of health, and local school districts. For those groups, Narcan will costs $37.50 per 4 mg device.
Adapt Pharma is a privately held, Ireland-based company, which bought the rights to Narcan from NYC-based Lightlake Therapeutics Inc. last December.