Octapharma at the forefront of rare bleeding disorders at the WFH 2024 World Congress in Madrid, Spain

Lachen, Switzerland
Press release

Octapharma presented exciting new data and core initiatives to leading experts and opinion leaders at the World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH) 2024 World Congress last week. Our activities included a satellite symposium exploring the latest developments in the prevention of bleeding in patients with haemophilia A and  von Willebrand disease (VWD), and the launch of the revamped VWDtest.com website.

The Congress attracted many attendees from diverse backgrounds within the bleeding disorders community, including patients, clinicians, and policy makers.

Olaf Walter, Board Member and Head of International Business Units at Octapharma, summed up the importance of WFH 2024 for Octapharma. “Our ongoing commitment to improving the lives of patients with bleeding disorders is at the core of our values. Congresses such as WFH 2024 provide an excellent opportunity for us to do so by presenting our research initiatives and showcasing our unique clinical data.”

Satellite symposium

Octapharma’s satellite symposium titled ‘Must-have insights on prophylaxis in Haemophilia A and von Willebrand Disease’ enjoyed tremendous success attracting over 260 attendees.

The symposium was chaired by WFH President Víctor Jiménez-Yuste (Madrid, Spain) and among the highlights was the presentation by Robert F. Sidonio (Altanta, USA) of WIL-31, the largest prospective study examining prophylaxis with wilate® in patients with any type of VWD.

Additionally, Craig Kessler (Washington DC, USA) covered the superior efficacy of personalised prophylaxis with Nuwiq® compared with competitor recombinant FVIII (rFVIII) products and non-factor therapies, Robert Klamroth (Berlin, Germany) discussed the role of FVIII in bone and joint health in haemophilia A, and Viola Vogel (Zürich, Switzerland) explored emerging research on the relationship between rFVIIIs and platelets and presented higher binding of Nuwiq® to platelets vs other rFVIII concentrates. Variations in platelet binding between different rFVIIIs might impact their efficacy for the prevention of bleeds in people with haemophilia A.


Since 2019, VWDtest.com, an international initiative led by Erik Berntorp (Malmӧ, Sweden) and Fernando F. Corrales-Medina (Miami, USA) in collaboration with Octapharma, has been highly successful in increasing awareness of VWD by informing people about abnormal bleeding symptoms and empowering them to seek advice. Central to the platform is a short questionnaire that helps people to assess their bleeding tendencies.

Since its initial launch, the site has attracted over 360,000 visitors from 147 countries, highlighting the global need for such a resource. The website has now been relaunched with more comprehensive and tailored educational content and tools for patients, as well as tools for healthcare professionals from other specialities likely to encounter undiagnosed patients in their daily practice. The relaunch was showcased in a poster presented by Fernando F. Corrales-Medina at the WFH congress.

Octapharma also supported a dinner event during WFH, with over 90 attendees comprising clinicians from many countries, five patient association representatives and the president of the WFH, Cesar Garrido. At the dinner members of the scientific committee, Mayte Álvarez Román (Madrid, Spain), Fernando F. Corrales-Medina, Erik Berntorp, and Ana Boban (Zagreb, Croatia), gave talks to celebrate the relaunched website and engage with clinicians and patient associations.  

“A core issue for improving care of patients with VWD is disease awareness, as many people are unaware that they are experiencing unusual bleeding. Initiatives such as VWDtest.com will allow more people around the world to recognise when they should seek medical treatment.” says Larisa Belyanskaya, Head of IBU Haematology at Octapharma.

About von Willebrand disease (VWD)

VWD is the most common hereditary bleeding disorder, with approximately 1% of the population having von Willebrand factor (VWF) levels below normal. The symptoms of VWD include frequent nose bleeds, skin bruises and haematomas, prolonged bleeds from small wounds, bleeding in the mouth, and excessive menstrual bleeding. Gastrointestinal bleeding is a common and sometimes life-threatening problem in VWD patients. Severe deficiency of VWF, or a specific defect in the interaction of VWF with FVIII, causes a secondary moderate deficiency of FVIII. These patients may have symptoms that are more characteristic of haemophilia, such as bleeds into joints or muscles.

About Nuwiq®

Nuwiq® (simoctocog alfa) is a 4th generation recombinant factor VIII (rFVIII) protein, produced in a human cell line without chemical modification or fusion with any other protein1. It is cultured without additives of human or animal origin, is devoid of antigenic non-human protein epitopes and has a high affinity for von Willebrand factor1.

Nuwiq® treatment has been assessed in nine1, 2, 3 completed clinical trials which included 201 previously treated patients (190 individuals)1 and 108 previously untreated patients2 with severe haemophilia A. Nuwiq® is available in 250 IU, 500 IU, 1,000 IU, 1,500 IU, 2,000 IU, 2,500 IU, 3,000 IU and 4,000 IU presentations4. Nuwiq® is approved for use in the treatment and prophylaxis of bleeding in patients with haemophilia A (congenital FVIII deficiency) across all age groups4.

About Octapharma

Headquartered in Lachen, Switzerland, Octapharma is one of the largest human protein manufacturers in the world, developing and producing human proteins from human plasma and human cell lines. Octapharma employs nearly 12,000 employees worldwide to support the treatment of patients in 118 countries with products across three therapeutic areas: Immunotherapy, Hematology and Critical Care.

Octapharma has seven R&D sites and five state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in Austria, France, Germany and Sweden, and operates more than 190 plasma donation centers across Europe and the US. Octapharma has 40 years of experience in patient care.

1) Lissitchkov T et al. Ther Adv Hematol 2019; 10:2040620719858471.

2) Liesner RJ et al. Thromb Haemost 2021; 121:1400–8.

3) Octapharma AG, data on file.

4) Nuwiq® Summary of Product Characteristics

Octapharma press releases are specifically for health specialist/medical media and are not for consumer press.  





von Willebrand disease