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Eisai's Discovery Research on Multikinase Inhibitor Lenvatinib Honored with PSJ Award for Drug Research and Development '20

TOKYO, Mar 25, 2020 - (JCN Newswire) - Eisai Co., Ltd. has announced that drug discovery research conducted on lenvatinib mesylate (brand name: LENVIMA, lenvatinib), the orally available multikinase inhibitor discovered by Eisai, has been honored with The Pharmaceutical Society of Japan (PSJ) Award for Drug Research and Development '20 by the PSJ.

The PSJ Award for Drug Research and Development is one of a series of awards presented by the PSJ and is dedicated to researchers who have conducted outstanding research work that has contributed to medicine through the innovative development of a pharmaceutical drug or applicable technology related to the pharmaceutical sciences. Award recipients are evaluated by the PSJ based on the ingenuity of the research itself as well as the effectiveness and safety of the related pharmaceutical product(s) or the innovativeness of the related medical treatment or treatment technology. The PSJ Award for Drug Research and Development was introduced by the PSJ in 1988, with Eisai previously receiving the award for drug discovery research in 1998 on donepezil hydrochloride, an Alzheimer's disease treatment, and in 2013 on eribulin mesylate, an anti-cancer agent.

The reasons for the selection of this discovery research for the award are outlined by the PSJ as follows. First, Eisai researchers created lenvatinib as a new type of kinase inhibitor with type V binding mode through a creation of the original screening models reflecting human disease and refined optimization of leading compounds. Furthermore, lenvatinib mesylate demonstrated antitumor activity against various types of cancer in clinical trials, which was accomplished with strategic application of drug properties to selectively inhibit kinases associated with tumor growth and pathogenic angiogenesis. At the time of application for the award, lenvatinib mesylate received approval as a treatment for refractory thyroid cancer, unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma, and advanced renal cell carcinoma. Finally, lenvatinib discovery research realized an innovative drug that received the Breakthrough Therapy designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and holds high potential to contribute to anticancer therapy worldwide.

Currently, lenvatinib has been approved as a treatment for refractory thyroid cancer in more than 60 countries including Japan, the United States, and in Europe; as a treatment for unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma in more than 55 countries including Japan, the United States, in Europe, China and in Asia; as well as in combination with everolimus as a treatment for advanced renal cell carcinoma (second-line) in more than 50 countries including the United States, in Europe and in Asia. Additionally, it is also approved in the combination treatment of lenvatinib plus KEYTRUDA (pembrolizumab) for advanced endometrial carcinoma in the United States, Australia, and Canada.

Eisai positions oncology as a key franchise area and aims to create innovative drugs that act towards curing cancer. Eisai is committed to exploring the potential clinical benefits of lenvatinib and aims to make continuous efforts to meet the diversified needs of and increase the benefits provided to patients with cancer, their families, and healthcare professionals.

About Eisai

Eisai Co., Ltd. is a leading global research and development-based pharmaceutical company headquartered in Japan. We define our corporate mission as "giving first thought to patients and their families and to increasing the benefits health care provides," which we call our human health care (hhc) philosophy. With approximately 10,000 employees working across our global network of R&D facilities, manufacturing sites and marketing subsidiaries, we strive to realize our hhc philosophy by delivering innovative products in various therapeutic areas with high unmet medical needs, including Neurology and Oncology.

In its medium-term business plan EWAY2025, Eisai is aiming to become a "Medico Societal Innovator" (a company that changes society through creating medicines and providing solutions), and is working on establishment of ecosystem platform business utilizing various data such as a large amount of clinical data, experiences, and know-how.

For more information about Eisai Co., Ltd., please visit https://www.eisai.co.jp.

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