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News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 8, 2006
For Print (PDF 115KB)

Eisai Acquires Four Oncology-Related Products from Ligand

Eisai Co., Ltd.
Eisai Inc.

Tokyo, Japan and Teaneck, New Jersey, United States- Eisai Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Tokyo, President and CEO: Haruo Naito) and Eisai Inc. (Headquarters: New Jersey, Chairman and CEO: Hajime Shimizu) today announce that on September 7 (U.S. Eastern Time), the companies signed a product acquisition agreement with Ligand Pharmaceuticals (Headquarters: California, Chairman and interim CEO: Henry F. Blissenbach) for exclusive global rights for their four oncology-related products, ONTAK(R) (denileukin diftitox), Targretin(R) (bexarotene) capsules, Targretin(R) (bexarotene) gel 1% and Panretin(R) (alitretinoin) gel 0.1%.

This agreement will enable Eisai to succeed the global marketing of the four acquired products. In addition, certain Ligand personnel will be offered employment by Eisai Inc. The cost for this agreement is U.S. $205 million.

There are various needs of patients exists in oncology and new innovation in this field is progressed day by day. Oncology is also positioned as one of Eisai's long-standing therapeutic areas of focus per its 5th mid-term business plan "Dramatic Leap Plan". The company believes that the strategic acquisition of these four products will be a promising approach prior to the market entry by its original compound.

Eisai is progressing with the global oncology business development with a number of approaches including new drug development and strengthening the company's marketing and sales operations. Through enhancement in the oncology product lines, the company wishes to create value for patients, contributing to the benefits of patients and their families.

The transaction is subject to governmental approvals and is expected to close after certain preparation period.


[Please refer to the following notes for the product information, glossary and Eisai's anticancer compounds in development. ]


Contacts:
Corporate Communications Department
Eisai Co., Ltd.
TEL: +81-3-3817-5120
Cathy Pollini
Corporate Planning and Communications
Eisai Inc.
TEL: +1-201-287-2052



<Note to Editors>

About Products

ONTAK(R)
  • Generic Name:   denileukin diftitox
  • Indication:   Treatment of patients with persistent or recurrent cutaneous T-cell lymphoma, whose malignant cells express the CD25 component of the Interleukin-2 receptor
  • Administration Route: Intravenous injection


Targretin(R)Capsulses
  • Generic Name:   bexarotene
  • Indication:   Treatment of cutaneous manifestations of cutaneous t-cell lymphoma in patients who are refractory to at least one prior systemic therapy
  • Administration Route:   Oral administration


Targretin(R)Gel 1%
  • Generic Name:   bexarotene
  • Indication:   Treatment of cutaneous manifestations of cutaneous t-cell lymphoma in patients who are refractory to at least one prior systemic therapy
  • Administration Route:   Topical application


Panretin(R)Gel 0.1%
  • Generic Name:   alitretinoin
  • Indication:   Treatment of cutaneous lesions in patients with AIDS-related Kaposi's sarcoma
  • Administration Route:   Topical application

Glossary
Cutaneous T-cell lymphoma
A group of disorders characterized by abnormal accumulation of malignant T-cells in the skin, potentially resulting in the development of rashes, plaques (patches) and tumors. Fungiform Ikinic syndrome and Sezare syndrome are two major disorders under this group.

CD25 component
A component of Interleukin-2 receptor, Cytokine (cellular growth factor) secreted from T-cells.

Kaposi's sarcoma
A type of cancer (an abnormal, uncontrolled growth of cells) caused by the malignant growth of blood vessels that appear as purple-red lesions on the skin, mucous membranes and visceral (body trunk) organs.

Eisai's anticancer compounds in development (after phase I)
E7389 Microtubule growth suppressorTarget NDA submission in US: FY2006
The compound is a derivative of the anticancer pharmacophore of Halichondrin B, a natural product isolated from marine sponge. It acts against tumors by suppressing formation of microtubules through polymerization of tubulin and by inhibiting cell division. The clinical trials for Subpart H NDA submission in FY2006 are ongoing for 3rd line breast cancer. Phase III for 2nd line breast cancer has also been started. The clinical trials for NSCLC, prostate cancer, ovarian cancer and sarcoma are also ongoing.

E7070 Cell cycle G1 phase targeting agentTarget NDA submission in US: FY2010
The compound is an anticancer agent that shows an unique antitumor spectrum that targets cell cycle in G1 phase. Phase II clinical trial is ongoing for gastric cancer patientsin Japan. Phase I clinical trial for SCLC patients (combination therapy) is ongoing overseas.

E7820 Alpha 2 integrin expression inhibitorTarget NDA submission in US: FY2011
The compound is a new, oral, anti-angiogenesis agent. It inhibits capillary tube formation and endothelial cell proliferation through the suppression of integrin alpha 2 expression. Phase I clinical trial is ongoing in the United States.

E7974 Tublin polymerization inhibitorTarget NDA submission in US: FY2012
The compound is a synthetic analog of hemiasterlin isolated from marine sponge. It is a new injectable anticancer agent that inhibits tumor cell proliferation by binding to alpha/beta-tublin subunits. Phase I clinical trial is ongoing in the United States.

E7080 VEGF receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitorTarget NDA submission in US: FY2012
This compound acts on receptors such as FGF1, PDGFRb that affect angiogenesis as well as VEGF family receptors. Phase I clinical trial is ongoing in the United States.