UCB is linking up with the USA’s Neuropore to develop drugs aiming at slowing the progression of Parkinson’s disease and related disorders.

The agreement centres around NPT200-11, which targets pathogenic alpha-synuclein which is currently in preclinical development and is expected to enter Phase I in 2015. Cashwise, Neuropore is getting $20 million upfront and is entitled to development, regulatory and sales-based milestones of up to $460 million, plus royalties.

Ismail Kola, president of UCB New Medicines, said that patients need better treatment options, “especially as there is currently no approved treatment that addresses a fundamental pathological mechanism in Parkinson’s disease”. With NPT200-11, “we have the opportunity to develop a disease modifying treatment option for patients with Parkinson’s disease and other synucleinopathies”.