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Oct 11, 2013

AstraZeneca, Janssen to Promote Novel Prostate Cancer Treatment in Japan

  • AstraZeneca entered an agreement with Janssen Pharmaceuticals K.K. in Japan to co-promote abiraterone acetate, an oral therapy for the treatment of patients with prostate cancer. Janssen Pharmaceuticals K.K. in July submitted a marketing approval application for abiraterone acetate to the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare for the treatment of the deadly disease.

    Abiraterone acetate, otherwise known as Zytiga®, is a CYP17-inhibitor that inhibits the key enzyme that modulates the production of androgens from all sources in the body, which can treat prostate cancer by helping to lower the level of androgens available to prostate cancer cells. It was approved in the U.S. in April 2011 and in the EU in September of the same year for patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer in combination with prednisone before and after treatment with docetaxel.

    AZ notes that the main treatment option currently available to patients in Japan is medical castration.

    "Abiraterone acetate is a great addition to our existing portfolio of leading cancer treatments, with real potential to address an important and growing patient need," said Marc Dunoyer, AZ's evp, global products and portfolio strategy, in a statement. "This deal is a strong strategic fit for AstraZeneca, reinforcing both our focus on oncology as a core therapy area and Japan as one of our key growth drivers."

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