OSS and EINDHOVEN, The Netherlands, May 23 /PRNewswire/ -- N.V. Organon, the human health care business unit of Akzo Nobel, and Royal Philips Electronics announced today that they will join forces in the development of new drugs and therapies for mental disorders and cancer. With the help of biomarkers (specific molecules or cells which can be measured as an indicator of biological function) and Philips' advanced non-invasive medical imaging technology, it will for example be possible to study the effects of psychiatric drugs in the brain at the molecular level.
Molecular imaging technologies are expected to speed up the development and approval of new drugs and therapies by measuring drug effects at the molecular level. In addition, these imaging technologies can be used to monitor the effect of the therapy and customize the treatment program accordingly. Such customized treatment programs could increase effectiveness and comfort, and ultimately accelerate and improve patient outcomes.
"Organon has invested heavily in optimizing its R&D efforts," explained David Nicholson, Executive Vice President Research and Development of Organon. "We are convinced that biomarker research will accelerate the R&D process and improve the success rate of developing new molecular and biological therapies. In particular, our drug development programs for the treatment of psychiatric and immune disorders are expected to benefit from this collaborative research effort with Philips."
"Our medical imaging modalities are rapidly improving and have evolved into extremely powerful tools to image the function and behavior of an anatomical feature, and not just its shape," said Rick Harwig, CTO of Philips. "The combined technological expertise of Philips and the life sciences know-how of Organon will definitely speed up the evolution of our imaging modalities into tools to image the body at the molecular level. In addition, they will enable new opportunities in molecular diagnostics."
As part of the agreement, scientists from Organon will work at the Philips Life Sciences Facilities to identify, validate, and above all, exploit novel biomarkers. The Life Sciences Facilities, situated at the High Tech Campus in Eindhoven, is a multi-disciplinary research facility, which provides the necessary biological, chemical and technical infrastructure and expertise for research and development in the field of translational biomarkers and molecular medicine.
Organon creates, manufactures and markets innovative prescription medicines that improve the health and quality of human life. Through a combination of innovation and business partnerships, Organon seeks to leverage its position as a leading biopharmaceutical company in each of its core therapeutic fields: fertility, gynecology and selected areas of anesthesia. It has extensive expertise in neuroscience and a rich and focused R&D program. Research areas also include immunology and specific areas of oncology. Organon products are distributed in over 100 countries worldwide, of which more than 50 have an Organon subsidiary. Organon is the human healthcare business unit of Akzo Nobel.
About Royal Philips Electronics
Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands is a global leader in healthcare, lifestyle and technology, delivering products, services and solutions through the brand promise of "sense and simplicity". Headquartered in the Netherlands, Philips employs approximately 124,300 employees in more than 60 countries worldwide. With sales of EUR 27.0 billion in 2006, the company is a market leader in medical diagnostic imaging and patient monitoring systems, energy efficient lighting solutions, personal care and home appliances, as well as consumer electronics. News from Philips is located at www.philips.com/newscenter.
Safe Harbor Statement Organon(x)
This press release may contain statements which address such key issues as Akzo Nobel's growth strategy, future financial results, market positions, product development, pharmaceutical products in the pipeline, and product approvals. Such statements should be carefully considered, and it should be understood that many factors could cause forecasted and actual results to differ from these statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, price fluctuations, currency fluctuations, progress of drug development, clinical testing and regulatory approval, developments in raw material and personnel costs, pensions, physical and environmental risks, legal issues, and legislative, fiscal, and other regulatory measures. Stated competitive positions are based on management estimates supported by information provided by specialized external agencies. For a more comprehensive discussion of the risk factors affecting our business please see our Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, a copy of which can be found on the company's corporate website www.akzonobel.com. The 2006 Annual Report on Form 20-F will be available in the second quarter of 2007.
(x) Pursuant to the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act 1995.