Co., Ltd. (TSE: 4523) and Biogen
Idec (NASDAQ: BIIB) announced today that they have entered into a
collaboration to develop and commercialize two of Eisai's clinical
candidates for Alzheimer's disease (AD), E2609 and BAN2401. The
agreement also provides Eisai with an option to jointly develop and
commercialize two of Biogen Idec's candidates for AD, the anti-amyloid
beta (Aß) antibody BIIB037 and an anti-tau monoclonal antibody.
The collaboration initially will be centered on the co-development and
co-commercialization of Eisai's two candidates: E2609, a ß-site amyloid
precursor protein cleaving enzyme (BACE) inhibitor, and BAN2401, an
anti-Aß antibody. These candidates have the potential to reduce Aß
plaques that form in the brains of patients with AD and to stop the
formation of new plaques, potentially improving symptoms and suppressing
Eisai will serve as the operational and regulatory lead in the
co-development of E2609 and BAN2401 and will pursue marketing
authorizations for both compounds worldwide. In major markets, such as
the United States and the European Union, Eisai and Biogen Idec will
also co-promote the products following marketing approval. Both
companies will share overall costs, including research and development
expenses, with Eisai booking all sales for E2609 and BAN2401 and with
profits to be split between the companies.
Biogen Idec will provide Eisai with an upfront payment and a fixed
amount of development, approval and commercial milestone payments. The
agreement also includes options for Eisai to receive an additional
one-time payment from Biogen Idec related to joint development and
commercialization activities in Japan.
"This collaboration is a natural fit with our mission to develop
therapies for patients with severe neurodegenerative diseases. Eisai's
candidates have demonstrated compelling early data and complement our AD
research while extending our pipeline in this critical area," said
George A. Scangos, Ph.D., chief executive officer of Biogen Idec. "Eisai
is a pioneer in successfully developing and commercializing AD
treatments. This history, combined with their strong scientific
heritage, geographical reach and unwavering commitment to the AD
community, makes Eisai an excellent collaboration partner to help drive
Eisai Co., Ltd. Pesident & CEO Haruo Naito added, "There exists an
urgent need to develop AD therapies that suppress disease progression in
order to effectively alleviate both the emotional burden of suffering
and uncertainty experienced by patients and their families, as well as
the financial burden on overall society in terms of the huge costs of
nursing and patient care. Eisai remains deeply focused on the
development of such therapies based on the knowledge and experience it
has accumulated through its development of the anti-AD agent Aricept®.
Through our collaboration with Biogen Idec, a company that specializes
in neurodegenerative diseases, I believe we will be able to further
enhance our existing R&D capacities for developing next-generation AD
treatments, thereby accelerating the development of promising therapies
and increasing the benefits provided to patients with AD worldwide."
E2609, discovered in-house by Eisai, is an investigational
next-generation oral candidate for the treatment of AD that is believed
to inhibit BACE, a key enzyme in the production of Aß. By inhibiting
BACE, E2609 decreases Aß proteins in the brain, potentially improving
symptoms and slowing disease progression. Currently, E2609 is undergoing
preparations to enter Phase II clinical trials.
BAN2401 is a humanized monoclonal antibody that is the result of a
strategic research alliance between Eisai and BioArctic Neuroscience AB
to identify a potential immunotherapy for AD. BAN2401 is believed to
selectively bind to, neutralize and eliminate soluble, toxic Aß
aggregates that are thought to contribute to the neurodegenerative
process in AD. As such, BAN2401 has the potential to have an
immunomodulatory effect that may suppress the progression of the
disease. Eisai obtained the global rights to study, develop, manufacture
and market BAN2401 for the treatment of AD pursuant to an agreement
concluded with BioArctic Neuroscience AB in December 2007. Currently,
the compound is undergoing Phase II clinical trials.
BIIB037 is an anti-Aß human monoclonal antibody that is currently under
investigation by Biogen Idec as a treatment for AD under a license from
Neurimmune. It is believed that BIIB037 binds to and eliminates the
toxic amyloid plaques that form in the brains of patients with AD,
thereby potentially suppressing the progression of the disease. BIIB037
is currently undergoing a Phase Ib clinical trial.
About Eisai Co., Ltd.
Eisai Co., Ltd. is a research-based pharmaceutical company that
discovers, develops and markets products worldwide. Guided by its
corporate mission of "giving first thought to patients and their
families, and to increasing the benefits that health care provides," all
Eisai employees aspire to meet the various needs of global health care
as representatives of a "human health care (hhc) company"
that is capable of making a meaningful contribution under any healthcare
system. For more information about Eisai Co., Ltd., please visit www.eisai.com/.
About Biogen Idec
Through cutting-edge science and medicine, Biogen Idec discovers,
develops and delivers to patients worldwide innovative therapies for the
treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, hemophilia and autoimmune
disorders. Founded in 1978, Biogen Idec is the world's oldest
independent biotechnology company. Patients worldwide benefit from its
leading multiple sclerosis therapies. For product labeling, press
releases and additional information about the Company, please visit www.biogenidec.com.
Biogen Idec Safe Harbor Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements, including
statements about Biogen Idec's expectations and mission to develop
treatments for people with Alzheimer's disease, through its
collaboration with Eisai. These forward-looking statements may be
accompanied by such words as "anticipate," "believe," "estimate,"
"expect," "forecast," "intend," "may," "plan," "will" and other words
and terms of similar meaning. You should not place undue reliance on
these statements. These statements involve risks and uncertainties that
could cause actual results to differ materially from those reflected in
such statements, including risks and uncertainties associated with drug
development and commercialization, Biogen Idec's dependence on third
parties over which it may not always have full control, and the other
risks and uncertainties that are described in the Risk Factors section
of Biogen Idec's most recent annual or quarterly report filed with
the Securities and Exchange Commission. These statements are based on
current beliefs and expectations and speak only as of the date of this
press release. Biogen Idec does not undertake any obligation to publicly
update any forward-looking statements.
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