Taisho and Lilly drop diabetes agreement

The emerging Japanese drug maker Taisho Pharmaceutical Co. revealed yesterday that it would end a development deal with Eli Lilly and Co. The deal concerns a diabetes drug in development by Taisho. Lilly were apparently put off the drug when non-clinical trials failed to meet the exacting standards imposed by the company . A spokeswoman for Taisho summed up the history : “Any drug maker’s evaluation standard includes safety and efficacy perspectives. We are not commenting about how the compound failed to meet Lilly’s standard.”
Taisho is the largest over the counter drug maker and exporter on Japan. They will continue to develop the drug, known as TS-021. The overseas unit of the company will pursue development of the substance for overseas markets .
Lilly were quick to purchase exclusive development rights to develop and market TS-021 throughout the world, apart from Japan and China. The news has slightly affected Taisho shares, which closed at 2 per cent down.
The collapsed deal is just one of many between larger pharmaceutical companies and smaller drug makers or biotechnological firms. The diabetes industry remains a major emerging market.

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