AstraZeneca, Honeywell To Develop Respiratory Inhalers With Near-zero GWP Propellants

British drug major AstraZeneca is joining with U.S. Technology major Honeywell to develop next-generation respiratory inhalers that use near-zero global warming potential or GWP propellants to treat asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD.

The new inhalers are expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions of propellant by up to 99.9 percent compared to the current inhaler propellant.

Millions of patients with asthma and COPD need inhaled medicines, and many use pressurised metered dose inhalers or pMDIs that contain small quantities of a type of GHG which acts as the propellant to deliver the medicine into the lungs.

AstraZeneca will incorporate Honeywell’s Solstice Air, which uses the propellant HFO-1234ze that has up to 99.9 percent less GWP than propellants currently used in respiratory medicines. Solstice Air is the only non-flammable, near zero GWP propellant available and in clinical development at present for pMDIs used by the patients.

AstraZeneca said it will extend ties with Honeywell to develop their triple-combination therapy, Breztri Aerosphere, using Honeywell’s near-zero GWP propellant technology. The partnership is based on latest positive results from the first in-human Phase I trial of the GWP propellant HFO-1234ze in a pMDI.

The trial of HFO-1234ze in a pMDI containing budesonide, glycopyrronium, formoterol fumarate in healthy adults demonstrated similar safety, tolerability and systemic exposure of the active ingredients when compared to Breztri Aerosphere.

AstraZeneca expects Breztri to be the first medicine to transition to this new pMDI platform. In addition to offering next-generation pMDIs, AstraZeneca will continue offering dry powder inhaled medicines.

Honeywell’s Solstice technology helps customers lower their greenhouse gas emissions and improve energy efficiency without sacrificing end-product performance. The product line includes refrigerants for supermarkets, air conditioning for cars and trucks, blowing agents for insulation, propellants for personal and household care and solvents for cleaning solutions.

The company noted that customers utilizing Solstice technology have avoided potential release of the equivalent of more than 250 million metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. This is equal to eliminating the potential emissions from more than 52 million cars for one year.

AstraZeneca also announced that all its imported electricity now comes from renewable sources. In its annual Sustainability Report, which demonstrates progress on its flagship sustainability programme Ambition Zero Carbon, the company said it has achieved a 59 percent reduction in its Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas or GHG emissions since 2015, including the integration of Alexion’s GHG footprint.

AstraZeneca’s plan is to be zero carbon across global operations by the end of 2025 and carbon negative across entire value chain by 2030. The company, whose net zero targets are verified by the Science Based Targets initiative or SBTi in line with their Corporate Net Zero Standard, aims for 95 percent of its key suppliers and partners to have science-based targets by the end of 2025.

Honeywell also aims to achieve carbon neutrality in its operations and facilities by 2035.

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