Firm has license to develop drug in new countries including China, Hong Kong, and Indonesia.

Tolmar and Astellas Pharma Europe inked a deal granting the latter territorially extended rights to the European-marketed prostate cancer therapy Eligard® (leuprolide acetate). The new deal means Astellas Pharma Europe now has a license to commercialize Eligard in a series of Asian, Middle Eastern, North African, and Commonwealth of Independent State countries.

Eligard was taken through the approval process in Germany by MediGene, which was Tolmar’s original European licensee for the drug. Acting as MediGene’s partner, Astellas launched Eligard in Europe in 2004, and since then one-month, three-month, and six-month formulations have been approved in Europe. In mid-2010 MediGene sold Astellas Pharma Europe the full European marketing and distribution rights to Eligard for  €25 million in cash plus royalties on future product sales.

Tokyo-based Astellas already commercializes the overactive bladder therapy Vesicare®, and  Omnic®/ Omnic Ocas®/Harnal®, a drug for treating the symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia.  The firm says its expanded rights to Eligard means it will be able to add oncology to its areas of therapeutic focus in emerging markets including Asia.

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