The team that developed the new drug ABarginase were led by Thomas Leung Yun-chung (left), Professor of the Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology and Lo Ka-chung Charitable Foundation Professor in Pharmaceutical Sciences of Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and Alisa Shum Sau-wun, Associate Professor, School of Biomedical Sciences of the Faculty of Medicine of CUHK on the right. (XI TIANQI / CHINA DAILY)
Hong Kong universities have developed a new drug, ABarginase, capable of simultaneously treating multiple metabolic diseases, such as obesity, diabetes and fatty liver, which currently require different drugs for treatment.
Researchers from Hong Kong Polytechnic University and The Chinese University of Hong Kong collaborated on the drug’s development.
Shum Sau-wun, an associate professor with the School of Biomedical Sciences at the CUHK’s Faculty of Medicine, said ABarginase’s pharmaceutical technology is highly efficient and cost-effective, with broad clinical application prospects
Shum Sau-wun, an associate professor with the School of Biomedical Sciences at the CUHK’s Faculty of Medicine, said ABarginase’s pharmaceutical technology is highly efficient and cost-effective, with broad clinical application prospects.
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The World Health Organization reported in 2016 that more than 1.9 billion adults worldwide were overweight, with over 650 million obese. One among two adults in Hong Kong were considered overweight or obese.
The research team has filed patent applications for ABarginase in multiple countries and is scaling up production to manufacture the drug at Good Manufacturing Practice grade in preparation for clinical trials.
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Shum said drug development requires significant time and funding, but the team is optimistic that ABarginase will be ready for testing within one to two years and will be marketed to benefit patients.