February 29, 2000
Taisho and EpiGenesis Agree to Joint Development of Asthma Treatment EPI-2010
Taisho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (President: Akira Uehara) and EpiGenesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Chairman and CEO: Jonathan Nyce) announced, today, an exclusive development and licensing agreement for EPI-2010, a respirable antisense oligonucleotide (RASON) for asthma.
Under this agreement, Taisho receives Asian market rights for the development and sale of EPI-2010, while in North America and other markets the companies will share rights and develop jointly. Taisho also retains priority in negotiations for the rights of any subsequent EPI-2010 product developments.
EPI 2010 is an antisense to Adenosine A1 - one of the known factors contributing to asthmatic conditions. It functions to attenuate the production of Adenosine A1 receptors in the cells lining the lung. Developments of a directly inhaled aerosol application of EPI 2010 are currently underway.
As the number of sufferers of asthma increases yearly due to adverse environmental conditions, the quality of life for chronic asthmatics is fast becoming a serious issue. We are certain that this new asthma product will deliver much awaited relief to this group of people.
EpiGenesis is actively involved in R&D activities for antisenses in respiratory therapeutics and has brought the field several other antisense developments in addition to EPI-2010.
Taisho leads the industry in over-the-counter healthcare products in Japan and continues to expand its sales and research, both internally and through collaborations, in the prescription drug field. We have formed a strong working alliance with ReqMed Company, Ltd. (President: Tadashi Matsumoto): an enterprise that handles the introduction of new products by pharmaceutical venture companies. Our present joint venture with EpiGenesis owes much to support and cooperation from ReqMed.
We feel that this partnership with EpiGenesis for the joint research of EPI-2010 is mutually beneficial and defines one aspect of Taisho's strategic efforts in products for the treatment of allergies.
EpiGenesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.