MannKind Corporation tripled the production capacity for Afrezza. According to the biopharmaceutical company, it can support demand for more than 300 million cartridges annually.
MannKind completed the validation for two additional filling lines for the production of Afrezza, an inhaled insulin drug for patients suffering from Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.
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MannKind supports new dosage strength for Afrezza
The biopharmaceutical company said it would supply the material produced during the validation runs to Sanofi. The production included the recently approved 12 unit cartridges support the launch of the new dosage strength for Afrezza, which is expected later this year.
In a statement, ManKind CEO Hakan Edstrom said, “With the completion of the validation effort, which began last quarter, we can support a demand for more than 300 million cartridges per year. The addition of the 12 unit cartridge will provide patients with another option to receive their prescribed dose.”
Sanofi’s initial sales for Afrezza were low
On Thursday, Sanofi reported that its initial sales for Afrezza were low in the second quarter.
During its second quarter earnings, Sanofi reported that ManKind’s Afrezza generated sales of $2.2 million. The French pharmaceutical company obtained the license and worldwide marketing rights for the inhaled insulin drug from MannKind. The pharmaceutical companies launched Afrezza in February.
MannKind and Sanofi are hoping to attract millions of diabetic patients who dislike injecting insulin to use Afrezza as a fast-acting alternative.
Commenting on the sales performance of Afrezza, Keith Markey, an analyst Griffin Securities said he was surprised by the figure. He believed that the sales were probably affected by a few factors such as minimal insurance coverage. He said, “When you’re talking about a very competitive market … having insurance coverage is crucial.”
Meanwhile, Analysts at RBC Capital Markets recently reduced their price target for MannKind to $9 from $10 per share. The analysts reiterated their Outperform rating for the stock.
Today, the stock price of MannKind was down nearly 3% to $4.17 per share around 3:37 in the afternoon in New York. The stock traded between $3.46 and $10.08 per share over the past 52 weeks.
MannKind lost more than 45% of stock value over the past year. The biopharmaceutical company has approximately $1.7 billion market capitalization.