News Releases

Sep. 26, 2002

Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals and Fujisawa Pharmaceutical Enter Collaborative Research for Oral Carbapenem Antibiotics

Tokyo/Osaka, September 26, 2002 --- Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd. (Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals; Masaaki Yokotsuka, President) and Fujisawa Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Fujisawa Pharmaceutical; Hatsuo Aoki, Ph.D., President & C.E.O.), today announced that the two companies have concluded a collaborative research agreement for oral carbapenem antibiotics.

The purpose of this collaboration is the discovery of novel oral carbapenem antibiotics for clinical development by the two companies to treat various community-acquired infections. The candidates will be selected from carbapenem derivatives, which Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals has already conducted the screening of or is going to newly synthesize. Under the agreement, Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals will synthesize new compounds and conduct initial screening. Fujisawa Pharmaceutical will carry out advanced stage screening of compounds provided by Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals. Once the candidate(s) is selected by the two parties, Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals and Fujisawa Pharmaceutical will execute an agreement for co-development and co-marketing of the compound(s).

Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals is an originator of meropenem (product name: Meropen®), the first carbapenem antibiotic in the world that can be administered on its own, and markets the product in Japan as well as several Asian countries. Meropenem is also available in more than 80 countries worldwide by its licensee. Through its continuous research efforts for novel carbapenem antibiotics, Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals has succeeded in discovering oral carbapenem compounds with promising profiles. Subsequently, Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals has decided that collaboration with Fujisawa Pharmaceutical meets its interest to accelerate research and clinical development for expeditious market launch of the new agent(s).

Fujisawa Pharmaceutical has established a firm franchise in the area of infectious diseases on the basis of a broad range of products, mainly cephalosporin antibiotics. Fujisawa Pharmaceutical is deeply committed to the discovery of novel compounds in the area of infectious diseases as one of the four therapeutic categories on which its research activities currently focus. With its ample experience in the area of infectious diseases, Fujisawa Pharmaceutical expects the collaboration with Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals will lead to the creation of novel oral carbapenem antibiotics in the near future.

Under the agreement, Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals and Fujisawa Pharmaceutical will promptly start the collaborative research. It is both companiesf expectation that the candidate(s) for clinical development will be selected in two years.