Elan granted US patent for new Alzheimer’s treatment

ELAN — which earlier this week announced tentative plans to partner with an international pharmaceutical company to boost its Alzheimer’s treatment roll-out — has won a significant US patent for one of its in-trial treatments for that condition.

This effectively guards against generic competition for the next 16 years.

The patent pertains to the Alzheimer’s treatment — code-named ELN-D005 — which Elan is developing in partnership with Canadian pharma, Transition Therapeutics. The drug is in the Phase-2 clinical trial phase and ranks as second in line (in terms of development levels) to AAB-001/Bapineuzumab in Elan’s busy pipeline of Alzheimer’s treatments.

The Dublin and Athlone-based pharmaceutical company is working with Wyeth on Bapineuzumab and has a number of other Alzheimer’s treatments in various trial levels in partnership with various companies, including one with US firm, Eli Lilly.

This patent — for ELN-D005 — relates only to the US market and runs, initially, until 2025; basically meaning that if and when Elan successfully commercialises the drug and brings it to market, it will have exclusivity on the American market until that date, before like-minded competitors can enter the fray.

“The patent will expire in the year 2025, or later due to any patent extensions,” the US Patents Office said.

Earlier this week, Elan reported a 48% year-on-year increase in sales of its headline drug, Tysabri — which is mainly used to treat multiple sclerosis sufferers — for the first three months of the year. However, as well as posting a 14% rise in first quarter revenue to nearly e243 million, the company reported a pre-tax loss of e88.6m.

Yesterday’s news boosted Elan’s share price — the company closing on Dublin’s ISEQ at e4.52, a daily increase of 1.12%, or 5c.


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