Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has received a Prix Galien USA 2008 Award for Best Biotechnology Product for Soliris® (eculizumab).

The Award recognizes the scientific innovation represented by the complement-inhibition technology of Soliris, and the impact the drug is having on the lives of patients with paroxysmal nocturnal hemolglobinuria (PNH), a rare, debilitating and life-threatening blood disorder.

Soliris is a first-in-class complement inhibitor that selectively blocks the formation of terminal complement, a component of the normal immune system. Patients with PNH lack naturally occurring proteins that ordinarily prevent terminal complement from causing the red blood cell destruction (hemolysis) that is central to the serious morbidities and mortality associated with PNH.

"We are living in the midst of a biological revolution and the breakthrough agents honored by the Prix Galien USA illustrate the substantial research and development necessary to bring the fruits of that revolution in molecular medicine to the clinic," said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Prix Galien USA committee chair, New York University professor emeritus and editor-in-chief of The FASEB Journal.