Stockholm, Sweden, January 11, 2024 – BioArctic AB’s (publ) (Nasdaq Stockholm: BIOA B) partner Eisai announced today that the Scientific Advisory Group (SAG) will convene to discuss the Marketing Authorisation Application (MAA) of lecanemab (generic name, brand name: Leqembi®), which is currently under review by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). The meeting of the SAG is expected to take place during the first quarter of 2024.
The SAG is convened at the request of the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) of the EMA to provide independent advice on scientific or technical matters relating to products under evaluation by the CHMP, or on other scientific issues relevant to the work of the CHMP. It is a commonly used procedure for new treatments and new treatment concepts.
Eisai expects the European Commission’s decision for the MAA of lecanemab in the second quarter of 2024, if the opinion from the CHMP is received by March 31, 2024, following discussion by the SAG.
Eisai serves as the lead of Leqembi development and regulatory submissions globally with both Eisai and Biogen co-commercializing and co-promoting the product and Eisai having final decision-making authority. BioArctic has the right to commercialize lecanemab in the Nordic region, pending European approval, and currently Eisai and BioArctic are preparing for a joint commercialization in the region.
This information is information that BioArctic AB (publ) is obliged to disclose pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation. The information was released for public disclosure, through the agency of the contact persons below, on January 11, 2024, at 07:00 a.m. CET.
About lecanemab (generic name, U.S. and Japan brand name: LEQEMBI®)
Lecanemab is the result of a strategic research alliance between BioArctic and Eisai. Lecanemab is a humanized immunoglobulin gamma 1 (IgG1) monoclonal antibody directed against aggregated soluble (protofibril) and insoluble forms of amyloid-beta (Aβ). In the U.S., LEQEMBI was granted traditional approval by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on July 6, 2023. LEQEMBI is an amyloid beta-directed antibody indicated as a disease-modifying treatment for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in the US. Treatment with LEQEMBI should be initiated in patients with mild cognitive impairment or mild dementia stage of disease, the population in which treatment was initiated in clinical trials. In Japan, Eisai received approval from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW) on September 25, 2023, to manufacture and market lecanemab as a treatment for slowing progression of MCI and mild dementia due to AD. Furthermore, in China, Leqembi was approved by the National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) as a treatment of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) due to Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and mild AD dementia on January 5, 2024.
Please see full U.S. Prescribing Information, including Boxed WARNING.
Eisai has also submitted applications for approval of lecanemab in Canada, Great Britain, Australia, Switzerland, South Korea, Israel, Singapore, Taiwan, Brazil and Hong Kong in addition to the EU. In Israel, the application has been designated for priority review, and in Great Britain, lecanemab has been designated for the Innovative Licensing and Access Pathway (ILAP), which aims to reduce the time to market for innovative medicines.
Eisai has completed a lecanemab subcutaneous bioavailability study, and subcutaneous dosing is currently being evaluated in the Clarity AD (Study 301) open-label extension (OLE) study. A maintenance dosing regimen has been evaluated as part of the Phase 2b study (Study 201).
Since July 2020 Eisai’s Phase 3 clinical study (AHEAD 3-45) for individuals with preclinical AD, meaning they are clinically normal and have intermediate or elevated levels of amyloid in their brains, is ongoing. AHEAD 3-45 is conducted as a public-private partnership between the Alzheimer’s Clinical Trial Consortium that provides the infrastructure for academic clinical trials in AD and related dementias in the U.S, funded by the National Institute on Aging, part of the National Institutes of Health and Eisai.
Since January 2022, the Tau NexGen clinical study for Dominantly Inherited AD (DIAD), that is conducted by Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer Network Trials Unit (DIAN-TU), led by Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, is ongoing and includes lecanemab as the backbone anti-amyloid therapy.
About the collaboration between BioArctic and Eisai
Since 2005, BioArctic has a long-term collaboration with Eisai regarding the development and commercialization of drugs for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. The most important agreements are the Development and Commercialization Agreement for the lecanemab antibody, which was signed 2007, and the Development and Commercialization agreement for the antibody Leqembi back-up for Alzheimer’s disease, which was signed 2015. In 2014, Eisai and Biogen entered into a joint development and commercialization agreement for lecanemab. Eisai is responsible for the clinical development, application for market approval and commercialization of the products for Alzheimer’s disease. BioArctic has the right to commercialize lecanemab in the Nordic region under certain conditions and is currently preparing for commercialization in the Nordics together with Eisai. BioArctic has no development costs for lecanemab in Alzheimer’s disease and is entitled to payments in connection with regulatory approvals, and sales milestones as well as royalties on global sales.
About BioArctic AB
BioArctic AB (publ) is a Swedish research-based biopharma company focusing on treatments that can delay or stop the progression of neurodegenerative diseases. The company invented Leqembi® (lecanemab) – the world’s first drug proven to slow the progression of the disease and reduce cognitive impairment in early Alzheimer’s disease. Leqembi has been developed together with BioArctic’s partner Eisai, who are responsible for regulatory interactions and commercialization globally. In addition to Leqembi, BioArctic has a broad research portfolio with antibodies against Parkinson’s disease and ALS as well as additional projects against Alzheimer’s disease. Several of the projects utilize the company’s proprietary BrainTransporter™ technology, which has the potential to actively transport antibodies across the blood-brain barrier to enhance the efficacy of the treatment. BioArctic’s B share (BIOA B) is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm Large Cap. For further information, please visit www.bioarctic.se.