Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has signed an exclusive licensing agreement with Helsinn Group to roll out Akynzeo in India and Nepal.

Developed by Helsinn, Akynzeo is a fixed dose combination of 300mg netupitant and 0.5mg palonosetron formulated as capsules for oral administration. It is approved to treat chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV).

Said to be Helsinn’s first deal of this kind in India, the agreement gives Glenmark exclusive marketing rights for the drug in India and Nepal.

Helsinn Group chief commercial officer Andrea Meoli said: “We are excited to begin our first collaboration agreement in India with our new partner Glenmark Pharmaceuticals.

“Glenmark’s renowned expertise in sales, marketing and distribution in this region will mean that Akynzeo, a key anti-emetic product, will be made available to more patients suffering from the side effects of cancer treatment in the important markets of India and Nepal.”

“Akynzeo will help Indian patients undergoing chemotherapy and struggling to manage CINV to address this issue in a much better manner.”

Akynzeo is already available in multiple markets, including the US and EU.

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The safety of the drug was assessed in three double blind, active-controlled clinical trials involving 1169 subjects undergoing a minimum of one highly or moderately emetogenic chemotherapy cycle for cancer.

It achieved 90% complete response rates over five days in patients treated with HEC cisplatin-based chemotherapy, compared with 77% in oral palonosetron.

Glenmark India Formulations Middle East and Africa president Sujesh Vasudevan said: “We are happy to partner with Helsinn, a leader in cancer supportive care. Akynzeo will help Indian patients undergoing chemotherapy and struggling to manage CINV to address this issue in a much better manner.

“I am sure the launch of Akynzeo will fortify our presence in oncology, which is a key therapeutic focus area for the company.”