New First-in-Class Epilepsy Treatment Fycompa® (Perampanel) Launches in Switzerland

   New First-in-Class Epilepsy Treatment Fycompa® (Perampanel) Launches in
                                 Switzerland

  PR Newswire

  HATFIELD, England, March 19, 2013

HATFIELD, England, March 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

Fycompa ^® (perampanel), the first in an entirely new class of treatment for
uncontrolled partial-onset seizures (the most common form of epilepsy),
launches today in Switzerland. The new therapy is indicated as an adjunctive
treatment for partial-onset seizures, with or without secondary generalised
seizures, in people with epilepsy aged 12 years and older. ^[1]

Perampanel is the first and only licensed anti-epileptic drug (AED) to
selectively target AMPA receptors, a protein in the brain which plays a
critical role in causing seizures. ^[2] This mechanism of action is different
to other, currently available AEDs. In addition, perampanel has the added
benefit of convenient, once-daily dosing at bedtime ^[ ^1] and, significantly,
is the only new-generation partial epilepsy treatment approved to treat
adolescents with epilepsy from launch.

"Effective seizure management still remains a challenge for up to 30% of
people with partial onset seizure despite appropriate therapy. Perampanel
offers a new mechanism of action that can potentially help people in
Switzerland achieve better seizure control," commented Dr Gunther Kramer,
Medical Director, Swiss Epilepsy Centre. "Uncontrolled seizures can severely
impact a patient's quality of life and the new treatment will give an
additional option to patients to help manage their condition. We welcome this
new addition to doctors' epilepsy treatment armamentarium." 

Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological conditions in the world ^[3]
and an estimated 70,000 people live with epilepsy in Switzerland. ^[4] The
incidence of uncontrolled partial epilepsy remains high despite many new AEDs,
and between 20 - 40% of people with newly diagnosed epilepsy will become
refractory to treatment. ^[5]

Perampanel's approval by the Swiss agency for the authorisation and
supervision of therapeutic products, Swissmedic, was based on three global
pivotal Phase III studies with 1,480 subjects. These randomised, double-blind,
placebo-controlled and dose-escalated studies showed consistent results in the
efficacyand tolerability of perampanel as an adjunctive therapy in people with
partial-onset seizures (with or without secondary generalisations).
^[6],[7],[8] The most commonly reported adverse events were dizziness,
somnolence, fatigue, headache, falls, irritability and ataxia. ^[ ^6] ^, ^[
^7] ^, ^[ ^8]

Perampanel was approved by the European Commission on 23 July 2012, and in
Europe the drug is currently available in the UK, Denmark, Germany, Sweden,
Norway and Austria. Swissmedic approved perampanel for use in December 2012
and the FDA approved perampanel for use in the US on 22 October 2012.
Discovered and developed by Eisai in Europe and Japan, perampanel is going to
be manufactured in the UK.

The development of perampanel underscores Eisai's human health care (hhc)
mission, the company's commitment to innovative solutions in disease
prevention, cure and care for the health and well-being of people worldwide.
Eisai is committed to the therapeutic area of epilepsy and addressing the
unmet medical needs of patients with epilepsy and their families. Eisai is
proud to currently market more epilepsy products in Europe, the Middle East,
Africa and Russia (EMEA) than any other company.

Notes to Editors

About Perampanel

Perampanel is licensed in Europe Union and Switzerland as an adjunctive
treatment for people aged 12 years and older with partial-onset seizures, with
or without secondarily generalised seizures. ^[ ^1]

Perampanel is a highly selective, non-competitive AMPA
(alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid)-type glutamate
receptor antagonist that has demonstrated seizure reduction in Phase II and
III studies. AMPA receptors, widely present in almost all excitatory neurons,
transmit signals stimulated by the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate
within the brain and are believed to play a role in central nervous system
diseases characterised by excess neuroexcitatory signalling including
epilepsy, neurodegenerative disorders, movement disorders, pain and
psychiatric disorders. ^[ ^1]

About the Perampanel pooled data (Study 306, 305 and 304)

The pooled Phase III data analysed the efficacy of once-daily perampanel in
reducing partial-onset seizures, the most common form of epilepsy, and its
effectiveness and flexibility of use as add-on therapy. Efficacy end points
for studies 304, 305, and 306 were pooled according to randomised treatment:
placebo, perampanel 2, 4, 8 or 12mg. The full ITT (intention-to-treat)
analysis set included 1,478 patients from studies 304 (n=387), 306 (n=386) and
306 (n=705).

Median reductions in partial seizure frequency were greater with perampanel 4
mg (-23·3%), 8 mg (-28·8%), and 12 mg (-27·2%) than placebo (-12·8%; p<0·01,
each dose vs placebo). Median (95% CI) differences from placebo in changes in
partial seizure frequency were -12·2% (-20·1 to -4·6), -17·9% (-24·1 to
-11·8), and -15·8% (-23·0 to -8·7) for perampanel 4, 8, and 12 mg,
respectively. ^[ ^9]

Fifty percent responder rates were greater with perampanel 4 mg (28·5%), 8 mg
(35·3%), and 12mg (35·0%) than placebo (19·3%; p<0·05, each dose vs placebo).
Median reductions in complex partial seizure frequency were greater with
perampanel 4 mg (-31·2%), 8 mg (-35·6%), and 12 mg (-28·6%) than placebo
(-13·9%). ^[ ^1]

Results from two separate analyses of pooled data from the perampanel pivotal
Phase III clinical trial programme endorse the efficacy and safety of the new
AED at clinically relevant doses. ^[9] In addition, the results show that
perampanel decreased the frequency of both complex partial seizures and
secondarily generalised seizures. ^[10] In a third analysis of the pooled
trial data, patients with uncontrolled partial-onset seizures taking any of
the five most commonly-used AEDs with perampanel as an add-on therapy
experienced a reduction in their seizure frequency. Patients generally
received additional benefit from increased doses of perampanel. ^[11]

Perampanel was generally well tolerated; most adverse events were
mild/moderate. ^[ ^6] ^, ^[ ^7] ^, ^[ ^8]

The clinical development plan for perampanel consisted of three global Phase
III studies (studies 306, 305 and 304). The key goal of Study 306 ^[ ^6] was
to identify the minimal effective dose and included four treatment arms
(placebo, 2mg, 4mg, and 8mg). Study 304 ^[ ^7] and Study 305 ^[ ^8] included
three arms (placebo, 8mg, and 12mg) and were to evaluate a more extended dose
range. The studies were similar in design: global, randomised, double-blind,
placebo-controlled, dose-escalation, parallel-group studies. The primary and
secondary endpoints were the same in all the studies: percentage change in
seizure frequency, 50% responder rate, percentage reduction of complex partial
plus secondarily generalised seizures, and evaluation for dose response. The
primary endpoint for the EMA is 50% responder rate and for the FDA is median
percent change in seizure frequency.

About Epilepsy

Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological conditions in the world,
affecting approximately eight in 1,000 people in Europe, and an estimated 50
million people with the condition worldwide. ^[12] ^, ^[13] Epilepsy is a
chronic disorder of the brain that affects people of all ages. It is
characterised by abnormal discharges of neuronal activity causing seizures.
Seizures can vary in severity, from brief lapses of attention or jerking of
muscles, to severe and prolonged convulsions. Depending on the seizure type,
seizures may be limited to one part of the body, or may involve the whole
body. Seizures can also vary in frequency from less than one per year, to
several per day. Epilepsy has many possible causes but often the cause is
unknown.

About Eisai Europe in Epilepsy

Eisai is committed to developing and delivering highly beneficial new
treatments to help improve the lives of people with epilepsy. The development
of AEDs is a major strategic area for Eisai in Europe, the Middle East, Africa
and Russia (EMEA).

In the EMEA region, Eisai currently has four marketed treatments including:

  *Zonegran ^® (zonisamide) as monotherapy and adjunctive therapy in adult
    patients with partial-onset seizures, with or without secondary
    generalisation. (Zonegran is under license from the originator Dainippon
    Sumitomo Pharma). In Switzerland, Zonegran is only approved as adjunctive
    therapy.
  *Zebinix ^® (eslicarbazepine acetate) as adjunctive therapy in adult
    patients with partial-onset seizures, with or without secondary
    generalisation. (Zebinix is under license from BIAL). Zebinix is not
    approved by Swissmedic.
  *Inovelon ^® (rufinamide) for the adjunctive treatment of seizures
    associated with Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome in patients >4 years
  *Fycompa ^® (perampanel) for use as an adjunctive treatment for partial
    onset seizures, with or without secondarily generalised seizures, in
    patients with epilepsy aged 12 years and older

About Eisai Eisai is one of the world's leading research and development (R&D)
based pharmaceutical companies and 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 human health care ( hhc ). Eisai
concentrates its R&D activities in three key areas:

  *Neuroscience, including: Alzheimer's disease, epilepsy, pain and weight
    loss
  *Oncology including: anticancer therapies; tumour regression, tumour
    suppression, antibodies, etc
  *Vascular/Immunological reaction including: thrombocytopenia, rheumatoid
    arthritis, psoriasis, and inflammatory bowel disease

With operations in the U.S., Asia, Europe and its domestic home market of
Japan, Eisai employs more than 11,000 people worldwide. From its Europe based
Knowledge Centre in Hatfield, UK, Eisai has recently expanded business
operations to include the expanded territory of Europe, the Middle East,
Africa and Russia (EMEA). Eisai EMEA undertakes sales and marketing operations
in over 20 markets, including the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy,
Spain, Switzerland, Sweden, Ireland, Austria, Denmark, Finland, Norway,
Portugal, Iceland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, the Netherlands, Belgium,
Luxembourg, the Middle East and Russia. For further information please visit:
http://www.eisai.com

References:

1. Fycompa. Summary of Product Characteristics. November 2012

2. Rogawski MA. Revisiting AMPA receptors as an antiepileptic drug target.
Epilepsy Currents 2011;11:56-63

3. ILAE/IBE/WHO, Epilepsy in the WHO European Region: Fostering Epilepsy Care
in Europe 2010. Available at;
http://www.ilae.org/Visitors/Documents/ILAEAnnual-Report2010Final_000.pdf
(Accessed Feb 2013)

4. EPI Swiss Epilepsy Centre. Available at:
http://www.epi.ch/page.php?pages_id=301&language=fr (Accessed Feb 2013)

5. French JA. Refractory Epilepsy; Clinical Overview. Epilepsia 2007: 48
(Suppl1) 3 - 7.

6. Krauss GM. Serratosa JM, Villanueva V et al. Neurology 2012: Available at:
http://www.neurology.org/ [ http://www.neurology.org ]

7. French JA. Adjunctive perampanel for refractory partial-onset seizures:
randomized phase III study 304. Neurology 2012;79:589-596

8. French JA et al. Evaluation of adjunctive perampanel in patients with
refractory partial-onset seizures: Results of randomized global phase III
study 305. Epilepsia 2012:1-9. In press online

9. Ben-Menachem E,Krauss GL, Noachtar S et al. Abstract presented at ECE 2012

10. Steinhoff BJ, Gauffin H, McKee P et al. Abstract presented at ECE 2012

11. Trinka E, Straub H, Squillacote D et al. Abstract presented at ECE 2012

12. Epilepsy in the WHO European Region: Fostering Epilepsy Care in Europe
http://www.ibe-epilepsy.org/downloads/EURO%20Report%20160510.pdf [Accessed
August 2012]

13. Pugliatti M, et al. Epilepsia Estimating the cost of epilepsy in Europe: a
review with economic modelling. 2007: 48(12);2224–2233

Date of preparation: March 2013

Fycompa-EU0022

Contact: Eisai Europe Ltd: Cressida Robson / Charlotte Andrews,
+44(0)7908-314-155, +44(0)7947-231-513, Cressida_Robson@eisai.net,
Charlotte_Andrews@eisai.net ; Tonic Life Communications, Hollie Matthews, +44
(0)20-7798-9992, eisaiepilepsy@toniclc.com
 
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