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Eisai Announces Commencement of Operations of a New Research Facility at H3 Biomedicine

Tokyo, Dec 2, 2011 - (JCN Newswire) - Eisai Co. Ltd announced today that the company's U.S. research subsidiary H3 Biomedicine held a ceremony on December 1 (U.S. Eastern Standard Time) in Massachusetts, Cambridge, to mark the official opening and commencement of operations of its new research facility. H3 Biomedicine aims to facilitate drug discovery based on the latest genetic research findings with a view to providing personalized medicine to treat types of cancer for which sufficient treatment options have yet to be established.

H3 Biomedicine will undertake the development of drugs for some of the most challenging cancers by integrating a new understanding of the genetics of patients' cancer with advances in synthetic organic chemistry. The company's drug discovery strategy is aimed at creating breakthrough cancer drugs that are more precise and efficacious than existing therapies based on two principles: 1) the identification of drug targets that define the root cause of the cancer by leveraging genetic characteristics of individual cancer patients and state-of-the-art bioinformatics technology and cancer biology, and the proper validation of these as target molecules; 2) the utilization of next-generation synthetic organic chemistry to create an innovative compound library that will pave the way for the development of novel small-molecule drugs against targets that are considered challenging or "undruggable" using traditional drug discovery approaches. H3 Biomedicine seeks to streamline preclinical and clinical research and significantly shorten the overall development time through the prospective use of cancer patient genetics to swiftly and effectively conduct biomarker research.

H3 Biomedicine was established in December 2010 in Cambridge, Massachusetts as a subsidiary of Eisai's U.S. pharmaceutical operation Eisai Inc. Home to one of the world's leading biotechnology clusters and world-class scientific talent, Cambridge provides an ideal backdrop for companies who seek the speedy exchange of the most up-to-date information and to engage in cutting-edge drug development. While H3 Biomedicine currently comprises a 24,000 square foot (approximately 2,200 square meters) research facility that houses state-of-the-art equipment, from fiscal 2012, the company plans to expand its laboratory space and eventually build a world-class team of approximately 70 staff. Eisai has pledged to provide H3 Biomedicine with up to $200 million in research funding.

Eisai not only shares in H3 Biomedicine's scientific vision of breakthrough genomics-driven drug discovery and respects the company's free-spirited corporate culture and uniqueness as a bio-venture company, it also seeks to promptly discover innovative drugs and make contributions at a global level to people living with cancer through a new collaborative business model that is ideally suited to the operational and fiscal demands of this long-term commitment.

In October 2011, Markus Warmuth M.D. was appointed as President and CEO of H3 Biomedicine. Dr. Warmuth brings with him industrial experience in analytical research into cancer drug-resistance mechanisms, which he has accumulated through his career as a physician and role as a leader of a pharmaceutical company cancer drug discovery research team. His abundant experience and accomplishments in drug discovery, cancer biology and clinical oncology will serve him well as he leads the team at H3 Biomedicine.

H3 Biomedicine's scientific founders are renowned researchers Stuart L. Schreiber, Ph.D., and Todd R. Golub, M.D., who are serving as academic advisors to the company. As founding members of the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, Drs. Schreiber and Golub have transformed the way medical and cancer genomics research is done. Dr. Schreiber's research has had a significant impact on chemistry, biology, and medicine. As one example of his accomplishments, three cancer drugs that target cancer proteins discovered by Dr. Schreiber have been approved in many countries. Dr. Golub is the world leader in the genomic characterization of cancer, and has pioneered the use of genomic approaches to cancer research. Under the strong leadership of Dr. Warmuth, H3 Biomedicine will fully leverage the wealth of knowledge and experience of the scientific founders in its innovative drug discovery activities.

Eisai defines oncology as an area of therapeutic focus, and is engaged in product creation activities that place emphasis on the discovery and development of naturally-derived, antibody, small molecule, and genome-based drugs. With the addition of H3 Biomedicine to its existing product creation function, Eisai will accelerate the development of naturally-derived, antibody and small molecule drugs based on cutting-edge cancer genomics as it seeks to make contributions to patients and families living with cancer.

About Eisai

Eisai Co., Ltd. (TSE: 4523; ADR: ESALY) is a research-based human health care (hhc) company that discovers, develops and markets products throughout the world. Eisai focuses its efforts in three therapeutic areas: integrative neuroscience, including neurology and psychiatric medicines; integrative oncology, which encompasses oncotherapy and supportive-care treatments; and vascular/immunological reaction. Through a global network of research facilities, manufacturing sites and marketing subsidiaries, Eisai actively participates in all aspects of the worldwide healthcare system. For more information about Eisai Co., Ltd., please visit www.eisai.com.


Contact:

Public Relations Department Eisai Co. Ltd T: +81-(0)3-3817-5120
 
Dec 2, 2011
Source: Eisai

Eisai (TSE: 4523) (U.S: ESALY)

From the Japan Corporate News Network
http://www.japancorp.net
Topic: Press release summary