Updated on 4 December 2012
Could you please share with us the highlights of you agreement with Ildong Pharmaceutical?
Under the agreement, we will receive an upfront payment of $5 million from Ildong and an additional $3 million upon the approval of Belviq by the Korean FDA. Ildong is responsible for the development, regulatory approval and, ultimately, marketing and distribution of Belviq in South Korea, including all related costs and expenses.
We will manufacture Belviq at our facility in Switzerland, and sell finished product to Ildong for a purchase price starting at 35 percent of Ildong's annual net sales. The purchase price will increase on a tiered basis up to 45 percent on the portion of annual net sales exceeding $15 million.
What is next from Arena Pharmaceuticals?
We are currently focused on working with our partner Eisai to launch Belviq in the US early in 2013. In addition, we are independently pursuing approval of Belviq in Europe.
Beyond Belviq, we are focused on the continued advancement of our pipeline of internally discovered drug candidates. We recently initiated dosing in a phase I multiple dose clinical trial of APD811, which is intended for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Beyond APD811, other prioritized programs include APD334, our S1P1 receptor agonist for the treatment of autoimmune diseases, which we expect to evaluate in a phase I clinical trial in the first half of next year, and APD371 - our CB2 receptor agonist intended for the treatment of pain that is in the final stages of preclinical development.
How important is the Asia Pacific market for Arena? What are the strategies in place to tap the Asia Pacific market?
We see a great deal of potential for Belviq to address the unmet needs of the millions of overweight and obese individuals in Asia Pacific. We continue to evaluate and pursue strategic collaborations that support Belviq's development, approval and commercialization in territories worldwide, including Asia Pacific.