The race was on. After years of dormancy in the neuromodulator category, at least three novel toxins— Evolus’ DWP-450, Revance’s daxibotulinumtoxinA, and Bonti’s EB-001—were coming down the pike.
Industry watchers were abuzz with predictions about which toxin would be the first to garner FDA approval and which would be the first to be bought up by big pharma. And while none has gotten the coveted FDA nod yet, Allergan acquired Bonti, Inc. for a cool $195 million last week.
“The Bonti acquisition by Allergan starts a new chapter for our novel products which stems from our vision to develop and market solutions for unmet aesthetic and therapeutic needs,” Fauad Hasan, CEO and co-founder at Bonti, tells AestheticsWire. “Allergan’s leading Medical Aesthetics portfolio offers an ideal strategic home for our innovative fast-acting, short-duration neurotoxin. It has the potential to complement their other products and to be a stand-alone solution to appeal to the 153 million consumers worldwide, including 65 million in the U.S. alone, who would consider facial injectables.”
“Bonti is a new chapter in the progression of Botox and other neurotoxins,” says Omaha, NE-based dermatologist Joel Schlessinger, MD and Chief Cosmetic Surgery Editor for Practical Dermatology® magazine. “We see many patients who are on the fence about having procedures done and might be willing to consider a neurotoxin if the results lasted a shorter period of time.” He points to data that suggest that up to 65 million consumers may consider cosmetic injectable treatments but nearly half demur due to concerns about the potential results.
“I am particularly happy to see new work on other subtypes of botulinum toxin. Bonti is the E-type of the toxin, which should be a nice addition to the options,” Dr. Schlessinger says.
“The [available and pipeline] toxins are complementary,” observes Heidi Waldorf, MD, a dermatologist in New York and Modern Aesthetics® Co-Chief Medical Editor. “Bonti’s toxin has rapid onset but limited duration. That means it will be useful for the last minute patient who wants to look good for an event, for the new patient who wants to put her toe in the cosmetic water but doesn’t want a big commitment until she knows she likes it.” It may also prove useful, “for the surgical patient to reduce muscle tension immediately after surgery and during the first weeks of healing,” Dr. Waldorf adds.
Others agree that Bonti’s product is akin to a gateway Botox. EB-001, a botulinum toxin type E, is characterized by a rapid onset of action (about 24 hours) and a short duration of effect (about four weeks). If approved, it also may help touch-up asymmetries mid-cycle or get a patient red-carpet ready in record time.
Another product in Bonti’s pipeline, EB-001T, is being developed for the treatment of focal muscle pain, localized pain that can be caused by muscle contractions and spasms.