YAKULT HONSHA, TERUMO TO DEVELOP ANTICANCER AGENT

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Japan-based Yakult Honsha will develop a liposomal formulation of irinotecan -- a kind of anticancer agent -- with Terumo, a pharmaceutical company based in New Jersey.

Encapsulating irinotecan into a liposome developed by Terumo, the new agent will be able to sustain its efficacy and improve its concentration in cancer tissues while reducing side effects, the company reported.

As an initial step, the two companies will begin a Phase I clinical trial of the agent by the end of May.