"AstraZeneca, the Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical group, today announced its biggest deal of the year with a plan to tap into the global market for antidepressants, estimated to be worth more than $20bn (£12bn).
The company, headed by David Brennan, is teaming up with US biotech specialist Targacept, which is developing an antidepressant drug that works on the brain in a different way to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as Prozac and Seroxat, known as Paxil in the United States.
Under the terms of the transaction, AstraZeneca will pay Targacept $200m and a further $1bn if the medicine gets regulatory clearance and meets certain sales targets. The drug will undergo final clinical trials over the next year and is expected to be filed with the US regulator, the Food and Drug Administration, in 2012.
The licensing agreement means that Brennan's company will contribute to further development costs and market the drug worldwide, providing it gets regulatory clearance.
According to AstraZeneca, the deal is significant because the new product could offer a new alternative to millions of people whose depression fails to respond to SSRIs. A recent study found that SSRIs did not work for up to two-thirds of patients."
"Targacept, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company engaged in the design, discovery and development of NNR Therapeutics(TM), a new class of drugs for the treatment of multiple diseases and disorders of the central nervous system. Our NNR Therapeutics selectively target neuronal nicotinic receptors, or NNRs. NNRs are found on nerve cells throughout the nervous system and serve as key regulators of nervous system activity.
We currently have a robust clinical-stage product pipeline and multiple preclinical product candidates. Our most advanced product candidates are in development for major depressive disorder, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia.
Targacept is located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina."
Nicotinic receptors indicate NIACIN - Vitamin B3 - which has health-restoring effects in ALL of the conditions
mentioned above. If Niacin does no harm and is cheap, why not try B3 first?
Image: The Emperor's New Clothes