A Korea-Japan war seems inevitable in the Korean market for next-generation gastroesophageal reflux disease treatments as Takeda Pharmaceutical, Japan's No. 1 drug maker, is launching its new drug TAKECAB in Korea next month to compete with CJ Healthcare’s K-CAB.
Industry watchers said on Feb. 20 that the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS) is expected to approve TAKECAB within this month. Takeda Korea applied for an approval to the agency last year.
TAKECAB was commercialized in 2015 by Takeda Pharmaceutical and became a blockbuster drug by recording sales of 550 billion won (US$48.95million) in the Japanese market alone last year. The official launch is expected to be made during the first half of the year, following drug price negotiations.
CJ Healthcare is on alert due to the imminent launch of TAKECAB in Korea. CJ has a new gastroesophageal reflux disease treatment, which has been approved as Korea’s 30th home-grown novel drug, to be launched next month. On Feb. 13, the company was recognized for its global competitiveness by winning a US$84 million (about 100 billion won) deal, the biggest deal made for a domestic new drug, to supply K-CAB to Mexican pharmaceutical company Carnot Laboratorios.
TAKECAB and K-CAB function through the mechanism of the next-generation gastroesophageal reflux disease treatment called P-CAB (potassium competitive gastric acid secretion inhibitor). Since it is more effective and convenient to take than conventional proton pump inhibitor (PPI), global companies have started to enter the market. The domestic gastroesophageal reflux treatment market is worth 450 billion won and has been growing rapidly due to a steady increase of patients from westernized diet.