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Astellas seeks green light for eye drug Izervay in Europe and Japan

Astellas Pharma is seeking approval for eye treatment Izervay in Japan and Europe, a bid to expand sales to counter a potential sales decline for its top cancer drug.

The drugmaker is in talks with Japanese regulators about whether clinical trials for local patients are needed, CEO Naoki Okamura said. If not, the Tokyo-based company plans to apply for the green light “as soon as possible,” he said.

Astellas has already applied for approval in Europe, he added.

The drug treats age-related macular degeneration and was developed by Iveric Bio, which was acquired by Astellas. U.S. regulators approved Izervay last year, and sales of ¥12.1 billion ($77 million) for the fiscal year ending in March were “better than expected,” Okamura said.

Izervay is among the new drugs Astellas is counting on to make up for a potential drop in sales when its top-selling cancer drug, Xtandi, faces generic competition in the US from 2027. The company also relies on fezolinetant, which is sold in the United States. US under the brand name Veozah, which treats hot flashes in menopausal women. Astellas will focus on increasing awareness of fezolinetant among physicians and expanding insurance coverage for the drug, Okamura said.

The company will continue to make small investments in the early stages but has ruled out “large-scale” mergers and acquisitions in the coming years, he added.



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