Takeda said today it had decided to stop development of TAK-128, a drug for peripheral diabetic neuropathy, after disappointing results in clinical trials.

The company said in a statement that Phase II clinical studies of TAK-128, licensed from Mitsubishi Pharma, have been conducted in Japan, North America and Europe but “do not show sufficient efficacy to support continuation of development activities.”

As a result, a licensing agreement between the two companies has been dissolved, said Takeda.

The demise of TAK-128 is the latest in a series of disappointments for Takeda and its affiliates in recent months. In September the company pulled diabetes drug TAK-654 from development, saying it did not have a competitive profile compared to other drugs on the market. And in August the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) refused to approve Uloric (febuxostat) from the Takeda Abbott Pharmaceuticals joint venture at the second time of asking.

Earlier that month Takeda also said it was likely to drop development of Tavocept (dimesna; BNP7787), for the prevention of neuropathy caused by chemotherapeutic drugs, after two Phase III trials failed to show a statistically significant benefit on the primary endpoint.

Takeda confirmed today that it had terminated its license agreement with BioNumerik for Tavocept in Japan, despite the fact that the latter company is pressing on with development of the drug on the back of a subgroup analysis of the Phase III data which showed it was effective in some patients. A similar license agreement in North America was ended last week.

Meanwhile, Takeda announced a deal with US biotech Xoma, valued at up to $100 million, for the discovery, development and production of therapeutic antibodies. The licensing deal will see Xoma using its phage display libraries and antibody optimisation technologies to develop antibodies against multiple targets.