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Home Industry News Astellas Pharma signs beta-secretase inhibitor deal

Astellas Pharma signs beta-secretase inhibitor deal

28th April 2008

Astellas Pharma has signed an exclusive agreement with CoMentis for the development and marketing of products from the CoMentis beta-secretase inhibitor programme, in addition to researching further inhibitors.

This deal covers the lead candidate compound from CoMentis, CTS-21166, which is an orally bioavailable small-molecule beta-secretase inhibitor currently being developed by the firm as a potential treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.

Under the terms of the deal, Astellas Pharma will pay CoMentis an initial sum of $80 million (40 million pounds) in addition to an equity investment of $20 million.

It will also pay up to $660 million in development milestones and further potential milestone payments from the companies’ research collaboration, while Astellas will fund all of the pre-phase III global development costs.

Hirofumi Onosaka, senior corporate executive at Astellas, said: “We are pleased to initiate a great partnership with CoMentis.

I strongly believe that CoMentis is very sophisticated in small-molecule drug discovery and development in NS, the area of attention.”

He added that the company is dedicated to developing CNS into one of its major therapeutic areas, with this agreement key force in accelerating the establishment of its infrastructure in this area.

In July 2007, researchers writing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggested that bisdemethoxycurcumin found in tumeric root could be responsible for the clearing of amyloid beta that forms the plaques found in Alzheimer’s disease.

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