News Feature | March 24, 2014

Astellas And Daiichi Sankyo To Form Compound Library Partnership

By Estel Grace Masangkay

Astellas Pharma Inc. and Daiichi Sankyo Co., Ltd., announced that the companies have agreed to form a compound library sharing partnership to promote innovative new drug research and development.

Both pharmaceutical firms have its own compound libraries that form the basis for drug discovery research. The new joint library will contain an estimated 400,000 selected compounds, making it the first of this scale to be formed in Japan, the companies said.

Using High Throughput Screening (HTS), Astellas and Daiichi can facilitate quick and effective search of the potentially beneficial compounds to be selected as candidates for new drugs. HTS is a method of high speed screening of molecules that respond to potential medicine targets from a very large pool of compounds. Through its advanced systemization method, HTS is expected to play a crucial role in early drug discovery and recognition of good candidate compounds for new drugs.

 “Extensive, diverse, and high-quality compound libraries, such as the joint Astellas/Daiichi Sankyo libraries, are crucial to successful drug discovery. This partnership will give each company access to qualitatively different compound libraries—which have been developed based on the targeting disease strategies of each company—allowing both companies to implement broader HTS to generate innovative new drugs,” Astellas said in its press release.

Beginning on the first of April for a period of three years, Astellas and Daiichi will implement broad HTS using the shared compounds, including a significant number of proprietary synthetic compounds, with no restrictions on targeted disease areas. Each company will disclose proper and sufficient information to allow the receiving company to implement HTS technology independently.

 “If, as a result of HTS, the receiving company identifies a candidate compound to be used for a new drug discovery, the receiving company may carry out development and commercialization of the innovative new drug with an indication for any human diseases from the compound pursuant to the terms of agreement,” the companies said.