News Release

Yamanouchi Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

Yamanouchi Tie-ups with Celera Genomics
for Genomic Drug Discovery

June 26, 2001

Tokyo, Japan-June 26, 2001-Yamanouchi Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (president: Toichi Takenaka) has entered into the agreement with Celera Genomics (president: J. Craig Venter; Maryland, USA) that gives Yamanouchi access to all of Celera's currently available genome databases, including mouse and human genome data and single nucleotide polymorphisms(SNPs) information, over the next five years. Yamanouchi intends to expand its new product pipeline by fully utilizing Celera's genome databases and bioinformatics systems.

Yamanouchi has been aggressively increasing emphasis on its genomics-based drug discovery research aimed at enhancing R&D capabilities and has started a new approach that looks at diseases in order to identify and validate novel gene targets in addition to the conventional genomics-based drug discovery approach that focuses on particular genes and determines their function and relationships with diseases. Yamanouchi has built up its own bioinformatics system by integrating various genome databases and used it for "The identification of gene targets through research on diseases by using information on mouse and human genome sequence data and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) information." The agreement with Celera will make it possible for Yamanouchi's researchers to accelerate the comparative-genomics research between model animals and human on particular diseases by using both human and mouse high-precision sequence data, SNPs and available annotated information on whole genomes. They think that this comparative-genomics approach is indispensable for drug discovery research. Through this effort, Yamanouchi will further accelerate the advanced target discovery research by genetics. It hopes that this effort will help it expand its own new product pipeline.

Now that the human genome sequences have been elucidated and our knowledge of genes is beginning to expand, Yamanouchi understands that one of its most important challenges is how to efficiently use genomic information in R&D to strengthen their new product pipeline. Yamanouchi is enthusiastic about entering into strategic tie-ups with bioventure companies and academia in various fields such as bioinformatics (drug discovery research using IT), proteomics (systematic search for target proteins for drug discovery), and SNPs (utilization of gene information aiming at tailor-made medicine). Yamanouchi is accelerating the development of new drugs through alliances with a wide range of partners. It recently concluded a comprehensive agreement with Hitachi Ltd for this purpose and is considering tie-ups with some other companies.