Daiichi and UCB Biopharma partner to introduce epilepsy treatment Lacosamide in Japan

Japan-based Daiichi Sankyo has signed an agreement with UCB Biopharma to jointly commercialise Lacosamide for the treatment of patients with epilepsy in Japan.

As part of the deal, UCB will manufacture and supply the product for commercialisation in the country, while Daiichi will manage distribution and sales of the product.

UCB Biopharma CEO-elect Jean-Christophe Tellier said: “We continue executing on our partnering strategy for Japan to enhance patient access to our core medicines in concert with strong and patient-focused partners.

“We share our partner’s passion for people living with epilepsy and for Lacosamide, and believe that Daiichi Sankyo’s excellence and overall market presence, including specialist areas addressing epilepsy such as neurology, neurosurgery and psychiatry, will enhance and broaden patients’ access to new treatment options for epilepsy in Japan.”

UCB will receive €180m in upfront and milestones payments from Daiichi, based on the agreement and subject to achievement of certain milestones in the future.

Lacosamide is currently not approved in Japan to treat epilepsy.

In October, UCB announced the Phase III clinical trial assessing Lacosamide met its primary efficacy endpoint.

UCB plans to submit regulatory applications in Japan and China in 2015 for Lacosamide as adjunctive therapy to treat adult patients with partial-onset seizures, based on the positive results of the study.

In September 2008, Lacosamide was introduced in the European Union under the name of Vimpat, as adjunctive therapy for the treatment of partial-onset seizures with or without secondary generalisation in adult and adolescent (16-18 years) patients with epilepsy.

UCB holds worldwide rights for development, manufacturing and marketing of Lacosamide, which is currently available in 44 countries including the US and Europe.