Rome (Italy) / Ashiya (Japan), 11 May 2023 – Angelini Pharma, part of the privately owned Angelini Industries, and JCR Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd. announced today that they entered into an exclusive global development and commercialization agreement for the development of novel biologic therapies that applies J-Brain Cargo®, blood-brain barrier penetrating technology, for the treatment of epilepsy.
JCR and Angelini Pharma will collaboratively lead the discovery and pre-clinical development efforts for the identification of brain-penetrant biologic therapeutics using JCR’s proprietary blood-brain barrier technology, J-Brain Cargo®. This technology allows the delivery of biotherapeutics into the central nervous system via a mechanism called receptor-mediated transcytosis. Following the pre-clinical development phase, Angelini Pharma will have an exclusive license option to advance therapeutic candidates identified as part of the collaboration into clinical development and global commercialization outside of Japan.
Under the terms of the agreement, JCR will receive reimbursement of research expenses and an upfront payment. JCR will also be eligible to receive additional payments of up to US$505.5 million upon reaching development and commercial milestones, as well as tiered royalties on post-approval net sales.
“Epilepsy is one of the most prevalent chronic neurological diseases. In the past decade, it has been recognized as a social disease with a high level of disability and a high mortality burden, and more research is urgently needed to identify targeted solutions for this underserved patient community” said Jacopo Andreose, Chief Executive Officer of Angelini Pharma. “Through this strategic collaboration with JCR, a company with a wealth of biotechnological expertise, we will combine our respective strengths to explore the use of biologics in this area and accelerate critically needed treatment options for people living with epilepsy.”
“The blood-brain barrier has remained an elusive target in clinical research for neurological disease, and we are excited to partner with Angelini Pharma to bring forward new therapies for these patients,” said Shin Ashida, Chairman and President of JCR. “I believe that our proprietary J-Brain Cargo® technology is an important key to treatment of central nervous system disorders. Combining our key technologies with Angelini Pharma’s deep therapeutic knowledge in neurological diseases will create new treatment options for people living with epilepsy.”
Epilepsy is thought to affect more than 50 million people worldwide[i], representing one of the most common, serious, chronic and debilitating neurological conditions worldwide. It occurs in people of all ages and has numerous neurobiological, cognitive and psychosocial consequences. Seizures cannot be controlled with available medications in many of these individuals, resulting in a high unmet need for novel therapies that offer long-lasting relief from the significant impact and burden of the disease on all aspects of their life.