SK Biopharmaceuticals, the new drug development unit of Korea’s telecom-to-energy conglomerate SK Group, is considering exporting its drug candidate Cenobamate to Japan, according to industry sources on Feb. 26.
Cenobamate was developed as an epilepsy treatment. The company is now conducting phase one clinical trials for Cenobamate involving Japanese people residing in Korea, a step that is mandatory when applying to commercialize the drug in Japan.
SK Biopharmaceuticals said although it had plans to sell the product in Asia, including China and Japan, it could not confirm any information about the status of Cenobamate. “Nothing has been confirmed, and we are (considering) diverse options for entering Japan,” a SK Biopharmaceuticals spokesperson told The Investor.
Industry sources say Cenobamate could be the SK affiliate’s foot in the door to the Japanese market. SK Biopharmaceuticals has been expanding its global footprint over the past few years. Most recently, it signed a deal worth US$530 million with Swiss drug company Arvelle Therapeutics to commercialize the new epilepsy treatment candidate in Europe.
As of the end of last year, SK Biopharmaceuticals had also submitted a new drug application for the new epilepsy drug to the US Food and Drug Administration. FDA approval is expected around November.
By Song Seung-hyun (firstname.lastname@example.org)