Company: Acorda Therapeutics, Hawthorne, NY
Entry Submitted By: Berry & Company Public Relations
Company Description: Acorda Therapeutics is a biotechnology company focused on developing therapies that restore function and improve the lives of people with MS, spinal cord injury and other neurological conditions.
Nomination Category: Company / Organization Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Company of the Year - Pharmaceuticals
Nomination Title: Acorda Therapeutics
Tell the story about what this nominated organization achieved since January 1 2011 (up to 500 words). Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms. Be sure to mention obstacles overcome, innovations or discoveries made, and outcomes:
In 2011, Acorda Therapeutics significantly expanded efforts to increase patient awareness and education through programs that involved both financial support and active involvement of company representatives in delivery of in-kind services. Following is an overview of major company milestones and accomplishments:
Net revenue for Acorda Therapeutics totaled $256,271,000 in 2011, an increase of more than 40% over 2010. Sales of the company’s lead product AMPYRA, a potassium channel blocker approved as a treatment to improve walking in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), grew from $133.1 million in 2010 to $210.5 million in 2011. Approximately 19,000 new patients began taking AMPYRA in 2011, bringing the total to almost 60,000 people with MS who’ve tried the drug since launch.
In 2011, Acorda made important progress in advancing research on the use of AMPYRA in the treatment of other health problems including chronic stroke and cerebral palsy. Preclinical findings presented in early 2012 were the first to show improvement in motor function with an oral drug treatment administered several weeks after an ischemic event.
In July, Acorda announced it had in-licensed AC105, a therapy being studied in acute spinal cord injury, from Medtronic Inc. In preclinical studies, AC105 has demonstrated neuroprotective properties leading to improvement of locomotor function in spinal cord injury (SCI) and cognitive function in traumatic brain injury (TBI) when therapy was initiated within four hours of injury.
In February 2012, Acorda entered into an agreement to acquire privately-held Neuronex, Inc. Acorda will now work to advance a new drug application for a proprietary nasal spray formulation of diazepam in development at Neuronex as a treatment for break-through epileptic seizures.
In 2011 Acorda was a major sponsor off the MS Walks across the U.S. with a special program called I Walk Because. Through this program, hundreds of participants in the MS Walks posted video messages of support for people affected by MS.
Acorda also sponsored a financial wellness series specifically for people with MS. The program included a series of webinars with information about financial health, insurance and other economic issues. Several hundred people took part in the series, which was available for free.
Acorda was ranked 5th in the Best Places to Work Industry survey from The Scientist magazine last year. Chief Scientific Officer Andrew R. Blight was recognized in PharmaVOICE magazine’s 100 Most Inspiring People list and President and CEO Ron Cohen, M.D. received the 2011 Stevie Award for Executive of the Year - Health Products & Services.
In June 2011, Acorda announced the company’s capital investment in a state-of-the-art office and research facility in the Ardsley Park life science campus in Ardsley, NY. This new space will enable the company to add up to 190 new jobs and will position Acorda to continue to support the regional Westchester County economy.
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Provide a brief (up to 100 words) biography about the leader of this nominated organization:
Ron Cohen, M.D., is founder, president and CEO of Acorda Therapeutics, a biotechnology company developing therapies for multiple sclerosis (MS), spinal cord injury and other nervous system disorders. Acorda has more than 300 employees and a market capitalization of over $1 billion, with two approved drug therapies on the market and a robust pipeline. Dr. Cohen led the 15-year development of AMPYRA, approved in 2010 as the first drug to improve walking in people with MS. He has been recognized as a business and healthcare leader by organizations including NeuroInvestment, the New York Biotechnology Association, PharmaVoice and Ernst & Young.