Eisai Inc Launching Center for Genetics-Guided Dementia Discovery Center
Eisai Inc (Woodcliff Lake, NJ), the U.S. pharmaceutical subsidiary of Eisai Co, Ltd, has announced that the company is committing over $100 million as an initial investment to fund the Eisai Center for Genetics-Guided Dementia Discovery. The center will focus on using human genetics to develop next-generation medicines for Alzheimer's disease (AD) and other dementias. Four key functions will guide the organization of the center: data sciences, immunodementia, discovery technologies, and precision chemistry.
Eisai has worked on the development of potential AD treatments, including donezepil (Aricept) and has an extensive pipeline with the potential to address the total care of patients with dementia, including modifying underlying disease, cognition, and supportive care.
The center will be a state-of-the-art dedicated facility in the Alewife Research Center in Cambridge, MA. Eisai sees the $100 million as an initial investment for establishment and the first 3 years of operation, expected to begin in 2019, and anticipates substantially increasing funding as its pipeline develops. When the new center is open, Eisai plans to close its current site in Andover, MA.
The Cambridge biotech hub location was strategically selected as one that will enable a focus on new scientific and business relationships for drug discovery, as well as greater access and greater collaborative potential for current and future work with research institutes and strategic partners. Eisai subsidiary H3 Biomedicine, specializing in precision cancer therapeutics, is already located in Cambridge, MA.
"By focusing on human genetics, our discovery labs have recently made rapid progress towards the next horizon of targeted immunodementia medicines. Recognizing this advancement, Eisai plans significant investment over the next 10 years in dedicated research funding to further accelerate human genetics-guided drug discovery at the new Eisai Center for Genetics Guided Dementia Discovery in Cambridge," said Ivan Cheung, Chairman and CEO of Eisai Inc. "With this commitment to R&D, our robust pipeline and Eisai's successful legacy in AD treatments, we believe we will be able to accelerate our efforts towards identifying the next-generation of dementia therapeutics to help millions of patients and their caregivers. We will apply our unique novel precision chemistry approach in the context of human genetics to deliver tailor-designed small molecule and anti-sense oligonucleotide solutions. Our goal is to discover next-generation targeted immunodementia therapies to complement and go beyond targeting amyloid-ß and tau."