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Otsuka to acquire Neurovance in potential $250 million deal

Published on 06/03/17 at 10:33am

Otsuka Pharmaceuticals, a pharmaceutical firm with headquarters in Japan, has agreed to pay a potential $250 million in a deal for Neurovance, a company specialising in treatments for patients with ADHD. The deal gives Otsuka access to Neurovance’s leading candidate for ADHD treatment, centanafadine.

Centanafadine is currently going through Phase 2 trials and is a triple reuptake inhibitor that modulates the activity of norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin in a certain ratio to achieve ‘a specific result’. What this means is that the drug has so far shown that it is able to improve the concentration of adults without being a stimulant and therefore does not disturb sleep or have the potential to become addictive.

“The sale of Neurovance to Otsuka Pharmaceutical provides a strong path forward for CTN based on OPC’s deep CNS expertise, while delivering substantial value to our investors,” said Jeff Bailey, Neurovance Chairman and CEO. “At the same time we are delivering an important asset to Otsuka with our unique approach to ADHD. I especially want to thank our team for helping to bring this opportunity to fruition.”

Neurovance will receive $100 million in up-front cash, with a further $150 million locked into milestone payments. It will remain intact as a subsidiary of Otsuka and the next step will involve developing its lead candidate into Phase 3 trials.

Tatsuo Higuchi, president and executive director of Otsuka Pharmaceutical, commented: “Otsuka has been investing prudently in acquiring assets and collaborating on the development of new technologies that address specific patient needs in the central nervous system, cardio-renal and oncology therapeutic areas. Neurovance’s resources will be a welcomed, integral part of our activities in CNS.”

Otsuka is currently known for its treatment for those suffering from schizophrenia, Abilify Maintena, and, as mentioned by Higuchi, hope that the company will fit comfortably into its portfolio. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2017.

Ben Hargreaves

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