OptiNose has nose for news, investors

The Philadelphia Inquirer ran a feature this week on Yardley, Pa.-based drug-delivery company OptiNose. The paper profiles Peter Miller and Ramy Mahmoud, both of whom jumped from their respective jobs to the company with "an idea so 'blindly simple' that, as Mahmoud puts it, one wonders why no one had thought of it before."

OptiNose's contraption is a nasal-spray dispenser that is different from other nasal drug delivery devices. Drugs delivered by existing nasal sprays do not reach mucous membranes in the nasal cavity and instead end up in the throat. With the OptiNose, the user breathes into the device through his or her mouth, sending the drug racing into the nasal cavity. This has the effect of closing the door between nose and throat, resulting in a greater amount of the drug reaching targeted membranes.

In Phase II trials, the OptiNose was shown to be effective in reducing the size or eliminating nasal polyps. Studies also have shown it to be effective in treating a single attack of moderate or severe migraine.

The Philly paper quotes a specialist as saying that he’s "very excited about it." So is Avista Capital Partners, which invested $48.9 million in OptiNose back in June.

- read the Inquirer report
- look at an illustration from Medgadget
- and here's the Phase II trial report from April