Biogen drops Alzheimer’s drug Aduhelm

31 January 2024; Biogen has announced that it will discontinue the development and commercialisation of ADUHELM® (aducanumab-avwa) 100 mg/mL injection for intravenous use and will terminate the ENVISION clinical study. This decision is not related to any safety or efficacy concerns. A large portion of the resources released resulting from termination of the ADUHELM programme will be redeployed in Biogen’s AD franchise.

We plan to further advance the launch of LEQEMBI, together with Eisai, and continue to bolster innovation with the development of the other assets in our pipeline. When searching for new medicines, one breakthrough can be the foundation that triggers future medicines to be developed. ADUHELM was that groundbreaking discovery that paved the way for a new class of drugs and reinvigorated investments in the field.”

Christopher A. Viehbacher, President and Chief Executive Officer of Biogen

In January 2023, Biogen began a strategic review of its research and development efforts, including seeking potential partners or external financing for ADUHELM, as part of a focus on prioritising the company’s portfolio. During this process, Biogen considered the time and investment required for the post-marketing confirmatory ENVISION study and the likely advancements in the field by the time of potential ADUHELM FDA traditional approval. Despite an extensive process, the company did not identify potential strategic partners or external financing.

“We have gained significant insight from the development of ADUHELM and will carry this forward as we continue our pioneering work in Alzheimer’s disease,” said Priya Singhal, M.D., M.P.H., Head of Development at Biogen. “We’d like to sincerely thank the trial investigators, healthcare providers, advocates, patients and families involved in the development of ADUHELM. We are grateful to Neurimmune for its scientific contributions and collaboration over many years.”

ADUHELM received accelerated approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in June 2021. The Phase 4 post-marketing confirmatory ENVISION study was a requirement of FDA accelerated approval of ADUHELM.

Eisai serves as the lead of LEQEMBI development and regulatory submissions globally with both Eisai and Biogen commercialising and co-promoting the product and Eisai having final decision-making authority.