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Biotie Provides UCB Partnership Update on SYN118


Biotie (NASDAQ-OMX; BTH1V) announced in May 2011 the results from an exploratory Phase 2a study of its HPPD inhibitor SYN118 in Parkinson's disease (PD). These data did not show a significant improvement in measures of PD motor function when compared to placebo. SYN118 has been subject to an option agreement with UCB as part of a broader partnership for the development of new treatments for neurological disorders. At the time of the original data announcement, Biotie indicated that it did not expect UCB to exercise its option to license the compound based on the results generated in the Phase 2a study. After completing its evaluation of these data, UCB has confirmed to Biotie that it will not exercise its option to license the compound for further development. Biotie has already fully impaired the carrying value of this asset due to the unlikelihood of UCB exercising their option.

The UCB collaboration also includes Biotie's novel adenosine A2a receptor antagonist tozadenant (SYN115), which is in phase 2b development for Parkinson's disease, and this is unaffected by the decision on SYN118. Tozadenant targets a mechanism of action different from that of SYN 118, a mechanism which has been shown to significantly modulate the off-time (time when Parkinson's patients have rigidity and other associated problems) without an increase in dyskinesias.

About SYN118

SYN118 is a potent and selective inhibitor of 4-hydroxyphenylpyruvate dioxygenase (HPPD). HPPD is an enzyme in the primary pathway responsible for the breakdown of tyrosine, the precursor of the neurotransmitter dopamine. This novel point of intervention has been thought to offer the potential to induce a sustained increase in dopamine synthesis in specific regions of the brain resulting in clinical benefit.

SYN118 was discovered by AstraZeneca and developed by Syngenta and their partner Swedish Orphan Biovitrum (Sobi) for the treatment of hereditary tyrosinemia type 1. In 2007, Biotie (formerly Synosia) obtained rights from Syngenta to develop and commercialize SYN118 in non-orphan diseases. Sobi markets the compound in Europe, the United States, Australia and Russia for the treatment of hereditary tyrosinemia type 1, under the brand name Orfadin®.

In Turku, 23 November 2011

Biotie Therapies Corp.

Timo Veromaa
President and CEO

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About Biotie

Biotie is an international biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of innovative, clinically differentiated medicines to address unmet medical needs primarily associated with neurological and psychiatric diseases and selected inflammatory diseases. Biotie aims to develop treatment solutions that will improve the lives of patients with conditions such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases, drug dependence and inflammatory liver disease.

Biotie's highly experienced development teams in Europe and the US are focused on efficiently delivering safety and efficacy data for the company's compounds. For niche indications, Biotie will consider bringing products to market by itself. For larger indications, it will seek strategic partnerships with pharmaceutical partners for late-stage development and commercialization. Current pharmaceutical partners include Lundbeck, Roche, UCB Pharma, and Seikagaku.

Biotie's most advanced product, nalmefene for alcohol dependence, has completed Phase 3 clinical development by licensing partner Lundbeck.


Posted: November 2011