- March 31, 2009
- Taiho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
Taiho Pharmaceutical and PharmaMar of Spain
Sign License Agreement on Antitumor Agent Yondelis® (Trabectedin)
Tokyo, March 31, 2009 — Taiho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., announced today that it has signed a license agreement with PharmaMar SA of Spain to develop and commercialize the antitumor compound Yondelis® (trabectedin) for the Japanese market. Yondelis® is a novel antitumor agent of marine origin discovered in the tunicate Ecteinascidia turbinata.
With the agreement, Taiho is licensed to develop and commercialize Yondelis® in Japan. PharmaMar receives initial and future payments, as well as royalties on sales in Japan. All development and marketing costs for Yondelis® in Japan will be covered by Taiho.
“We are very pleased to license our lead product to Japan’s leading oncology firm, said Luis Mora, General Manager of PharmaMar. “Japan accounts for about 11 percent of the world’s sales in oncology and we are convinced that, in Taiho, we have found a partner who is fully committed to bring Yondelis® to this important market in a timely manner. We believe that Yondelis® will make a significant contribution to the treatment of cancer in Japan.”
oru Usami, President of Taiho Pharmaceutical, commented, “We are delighted to establish a partnership with PharmaMar, the world-leader in marine-derived biopharmaceuticals. We believe that Yondelis® will contribute to the treatment in Japan of soft tissue sarcoma, an intractable form of cancer for which treatment needs remain to be met, and also to the treatment of ovarian and other types of cancer.”
Yondelis® (trabectedin) is a novel antitumor agent of marine origin discovered in the tunicate Ecteinascidia turbinata. Yondelis® binds to the minor groove of DNA, interfering with cell division, genetic transcription processes and DNA repair mechanisms. In September 2007, it received marketing authorisation from the European Commission as a therapeutic agent for advanced or metastatic soft tissue sarcoma. In 2008, registration dossiers were submitted to the EMEA*1 and FDA*2 for administration in combination with a pegylated liposomal doxorubicin for the treatment of relapsed ovarian cancer. Phase-II clinical trials are also ongoing for breast cancer, hormone-refractory prostate cancer, and lung cancer.
*1 European Medicines Evaluation Agency
*2 United States Food and Drug Administration
PharmaMar is a subsidiary of the Zeltia Group (Spanish Stock Exchange symbol: ZEL), and a world-leading biopharmaceutical firm committed to advancing the treatment of cancer through the discovery and development of new marine-derived medicines. In addition to Yondelis®, PharmaMar’s pipeline includes three other marine-derived compounds—Aplidin®, Irvalec®, and Zalypsis®—which are in various stages of clinical development. The Zeltia Group has been offered on the Spanish Stock Exchange since 1963, and is based in Madrid, Spain.
Information in this news release was current as of the original release date.