[THE INVESTOR] Chong Kun Dang Pharmaceutical said on April 16 that it has entered into a partnership with the Japanese unit of a US-based drug maker to export its biosimilar candidate referencing Kyowa Hakko Kirin’s anemia drug Nesp.
Under the deal, Chong Kun Dang will supply CKD-11101 to the Japanese company, whose name was not disclosed. In return, it will receive an upfront payment, development milestones, and royalties on sales. The Japanese counterpart will have exclusive rights to CKD-11101 for clinical trials, regulatory approval and sales in Japan.
“The contract will enable us to enter the Japanese market estimated to be worth 470 billion won (US$437 million) to eventually move on to the global Nesp market worth 2.8 trillion won,” the Korean pharma firm said in a statement.
The drug candidate is a copycat version of the red blood cell booster Nesp, codeveloped by Japan’s Kyowa Hakko Kirin and Amgen.
The potential treatment of iron-deficiency anemia in patients with chronic renal failure, is expected to hit the Korean market in April 2019 as the world’s first Nesp biosimilar if the Korean drug maker gains marketing authorization within this year as it hopes, it said.
The Nesp biosimilar development is closely followed by another Korean drug maker CJ HealthCare that has its own version that is in phase 3 clinical trials. The firm licensed out the second-generation erythropoietin CJ-40001 to China’s NCPC GeneTech Biotechnology in January.
Along with CKD-11101, Chong Kun Dang’s biosimilar pipeline includes a copy of Lucentis, the best-selling eye therapy from Novartis, which is under preclinical studies.
By Park Han-na (firstname.lastname@example.org)