A Look-Back at the 2016 World Federation of Hemophilia Congress

“If we think about patients every day and do the right things for them, the rest will take care of itself.”

September 13, 2016
By Christopher Florentz

World Federation of Hemophilia BannerThis summer’s World Federation of Hemophilia Congress got off to a fast start with CSL Behring’s coagulation team eager to meet with patients and healthcare providers and discuss their needs and how we can meet them.

The level of excitement among the CSL Behring’s team was palpable, as CSL CEO and Managing Director Paul Perreault kicked things off at the start of the Congress by reinforcing to them the importance of maintaining focus on what matters most:

“If we think about patients every day and do the right things for them, the rest will take care of itself. We began with the promise to produce much needed medicines for the people of Australia. Today we are bringing medicines to the world.”


WFH CSL boothCSL’s Chief Scientific Officer Dr. Andrew Cuthbertson shared his thoughts with the coagulation team on what it takes to evolve and develop ideas born on the ‘bench’ into lifesaving medicines:

“Ten years ago, we saw the potential promise of albumin fusion technology when the idea to use it to create longer acting therapies was born in CSL’s laboratories. We decided to tackle two projects at the time that we knew were high risk, and we were uncertain whether either would make it through to final approval.

This year, with the addition of two new therapies for the treatment of hemophilia, those high-risk projects became a reality, enabling us to expand the treatment options that patients and their doctors have available to them.”

Ten years ago, we saw the potential promise of albumin fusion technology when the idea to use it to create longer acting therapies was born in CSL’s laboratories.

Andrew said that his greatest thrill, when the new therapies were in development, was seeing the first human clinical data in support of albumin fusion technology.

WFH CSL screens“Developing breakthrough products is our mission, and we continue to build our R&D capability. But none of it would be possible without our scientists, who are always looking ahead and making sure that we continue to develop innovative treatment options by introducing new molecules.”

More than 5,000 hemophilia patients, advocates, health care providers and industry representatives attended the largest international meeting for the global bleeding disorders community this summer. The Congress examined a number of critical topics such as the implications of hepatitis C for hemophilia patients, managing the challenges of aging with hemophilia, and bleeding and response to treatment.

According to CSL’s Senior Global Product Manager Christine MacMillan, “One of our treatment options contains an elegant molecule that is very stable and well-designed, affording patients greater convenience. Flexible dosing is also possible without the need for increased consumption.”

Senior Global Product Manager Thomas Romanus asked his CSL colleagues to put themselves in the shoes of a parent whose young child has one to four bleeds per month:

“For those parents whose lives and those of their children revolve around their infusion schedule, extended dosing is huge.”

“Just getting the child to sit still for an infusion is a big deal. For those parents whose lives and those of their children revolve around their infusion schedule, extended dosing is huge. The child’s life is lifted in a new trajectory.”

Throughout the Congress, Jens Oltrogge, CSL’s Senior Director of Coagulation, urged his team to take every opportunity to connect with members of the bleeding disorders community:

“Whenever you have a chance to listen to a patient and talk to a patient, take it! Always ask him or her, ‘what can we do better to help you?’”

christopher florentz
Christopher Florentz is CSL Behring’s Manager of External Communications and Editor of BioBlog

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