Scinopharm To Supply Supernus' with API For New US Epilepsy Drug

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

Scinopharma bags new US topiramate supply contract
Scinopharma bags new US topiramate supply contract

Related tags Pharmaceutical drug Pharmacology

Scinopharm will supply Supernus Pharmaceuticals with the API topiramate in a contract announced this week.

The deal - terms of which were not disclosed – will see the Taiwan-based active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) manufacturer supply Maryland-based Supernus with the active ingredient for its epilepsy drug Trokendi XR, which was launched in the US last week.

Spokeswoman Sabrina Wu told in-Pharmatechnologist.com the deal builds on an existing relationship, explaining that: "Supernus has been our topiramate customer for another epilepsy product for some years.​" 

Topiramate production

Scinopharm began manufacturing topiramate at its facility in the Tainan Science Park in 2010 with the aim of supplying drug companies making treatments for epilepsy and other central nervous system disorders.

Two years later the firm started supplying the API to Vivus for Qsymia, which is a combination of topiramate and the appetite suppressant phentermine that is sold in the US for the treatment of obesity.

At the time Scinopharm​ told in-Pharmatechnologist.com it would expand its production capacity for topiramate and other APIs by adding two new manufacturing lines at the Tainan site in a project scheduled to complete last December.

Scinopharm CEO Jo Shen welcomed the deal with Supernus with which she said the Taiwanese contractor has a long standing relationship.

She added that: "We are committed to providing Supernus and our other customers with high quality APIs, combining with a flexible, reliable, and competitive approach​.”  

Modified release

Supernus’ product – which was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in August – uses the Microcontrol XR technology that the firm developed as Shire Laboratories.

News of the API supply deal follows just a few months after Scinopharm invested in drug delivery by establishing a joint venture (JV) with US-based technology firm Foresee Pharmaceuticals​.

According to comments at the time the JV will focus on the development of a generic controlled-release version of the cancer treatment leuprolide acetate.

More recently Scinopharm​ teamed up with Sundia MediTech to target pharmaceutical firms wishing to develop drugs for the rapidly expanding Chinese market. 

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