ALK's partner for North America, Merck, announces launch of RAGWITEK(tm) in Canada

Copenhagen, May 15, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE via COMTEX) --

ALK ( ALKB:DC / OMX: ALK B / AKABY / AKBLF) today announced that its ragweed sublingual allergy immunotherapy tablet, which is licensed to Merck (known as MSD outside the USA and Canada) for North America, has now been launched in Canada.

The product is known in Canada as RAGWITEK(tm).

The launch announcement follows regulatory approval from the Canadian authorities of the New Drug Submission (NDS).

ALK's President and CEO, Jens Bager, said: "The launch brings an effective new treatment to ragweed allergy sufferers in Canada. RAGWITEK(tm) as well as GRASTEK(r) are now available in both the USA and Canada. These launches mark major steps towards our ambition of globalising ALKs portfolio of sublingual allergy immunotherapy tablets." 

In Canada, RAGWITEK(tm) is indicated for reducing the signs and symptoms of moderate to severe seasonal short ragweed pollen induced allergic rhinitis, with or without conjunctivitis, in adults confirmed by clinically relevant symptoms for at least two pollen seasons and a positive skin prick test and/or a positive titre to Ambrosia artemisiifolia specific IgE, and who have responded inadequately, or are intolerant to conventional pharmacotherapy. Across North America, approximately 20 million allergy sufferers have been diagnosed with moderate-to-severe allergic rhinitis and seek treatment by a doctor. 

ALK-Abello A/S

ALK will be hosting an R&D and business briefing for institutional investors, equity research analysts and media in New York City on May 21, 2014. Any questions regarding this event can be directed to Janet Dally at [email protected] (+1 609-466-0466). Please use this link to register online:

For further information please contact:
Jens Bager, President and CEO, tel. +45 4574 7576
Investor Relations: Per Plotnikof, tel. +45 4574 7527, mobile +45 2261 2525
Press: Martin Barlebo, tel. +45 4574 7901, mobile +45 2064 1143

About ALK

ALK is a research-driven global pharmaceutical company focusing on allergy prevention, diagnosis and treatment. ALK is the world leader in allergy immunotherapy - a unique treatment of the underlying cause of allergy. The company has approximately 1,800 employees with subsidiaries, production facilities and distributors worldwide. ALK has entered into partnership agreements with Merck and Torii to commercialise sublingual allergy immunotherapy tablets in North America and Japan, respectively. The company is headquartered in Hoersholm, Denmark, and listed on NASDAQ OMX Copenhagen. Find more information at .

About the partnership with Merck in North America

ALK has entered into a strategic partnership with Merck to develop, register and commercialise a portfolio of sublingual allergy immunoterapy tablets against grass pollen, ragweed and house dust mite allergy in the USA, Canada and Mexico. Under the agreement, ALK will receive up to DKK 1.6 billion (USD 290 million) in milestone payments from Merck, of which, approximately DKK 400 million has already been recognised in the years 2007-14. In addition, ALK is entitled to royalty payments on the net sales of the products on the North American market as well as payments for product supply. Merck will be responsible for all costs of clinical development, registration, marketing and sales of the products on the North American markets. ALK will be responsible for tablet production and supply.

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