UCB announces approval of VIMPAT® in China

Author: BenCham PRD

Brussels (Belgium), 3 December  – 07:00 (CET): Belgium-based global bio-pharmaceutical company UCB today announced it has received an Import Drug License (IDL) from the National Drug Administration of China (CNDA), creating a pathway to make VIMPAT® (lacosamide) available to treat people living with epilepsy in China.
With this IDL, VIMPAT® is now indicated in China as adjunctive therapy in the treatment of partial-onset seizures with or without secondary generalization in adult and adolescent patients 16 years of age and older with epilepsy. 
There are close to 10 million patients living with epilepsy in China1, and an estimated 400,000 new cases are diagnosed each year1. The approval of VIMPAT® provides an exciting new choice for those affected by epilepsy in China which could help support patients on their journeys towards seizure freedom.
Results from a national survey reveal the extent to which epilepsy can impact a patient’s ability to live their lives at their ideal. The survey shows for example that poorly managed seizures contribute to an unemployment rate in China for people with epilepsy of nearly 70%1. This suggests a clear need in China for medicines which can support patients in better managing their disease.
The approval of VIMPAT® in China is a very important milestone for UCB - and for those living with epilepsy. Although great progress has been made in the management of epilepsy in China, we know there are still millions of people living with uncontrolled seizures who are unable to access some of the newer anti-epilepsy medicines which could be beneficial for them,” said Jeff Wren, Executive Vice-President, Head of UCB’s Neurology Patient Value Unit. “By making VIMPAT® available in China, UCB continues to play an important role that started with KEPPRA® in improving the lives of people with epilepsy around the world, addressing some of the gaps in epilepsy management and creating pathways which we hope will support patients in managing their individual epilepsy journeys. We look forward to making VIMPAT® available to patients in China as quickly as possible”.
The approval of VIMPAT®, alongside the recent approval of UCB’s 24-hour continuous delivery transdermal rotigotine patch NEUPRO® for the treatment of Parkinson’s Disease, and the CNDA’s decision to grant a Priority review of CIMZIA® for the treatment of moderate-to-severe rheumatoid arthritis, reinforce UCB’s ongoing commitment to making our newest medicines available to support patients living with severe diseases in China.
UCB has been present in China since 1996 and has a prominent presence in the country, having launched KEPPRA® (levetiracetam) for the treatment of various forms of epilepsy in 2007. This important landmark helped established the company's reputation as a leader in neurology. Additionally, in 2014, UCB inaugurated a new state of the art 13,000 m² manufacturing site in Zhuhai, which strengthened our footprint in the country.