Eisai and Nihon Medi-Physics plan to work together on one of Japan's three major dementia types, termed "dementia with Lewy bodies," meaning abnormal massing of protein inside nerve cells. The research is part of a broad cascade of efforts around the globe into diagnostics and treatments for dementia-related studies.
Eisai reported their collaboration agreement meant they would work on diagnosing and treating the DLB disease that affects a sizeable number of the elderly, whose numbers in turn are increasing as the general population ages. DLB, with its progressive cognitive impairment, is considered difficult to diagnose.
Nihon is to contribute its DaTSCAN injectable diagnostic agent for brain disorders, while Eisai offers its Aricept (donepezil), the only global treatment for limiting the progression of DLB dementia symptoms.
Financial arrangements of the collaboration were not disclosed.
Other research focused on Alzheimer's disease and related diagnostics has been met in part by government and other funding, particularly in countries where care costs for aging populations is set to soar such as Japan.
- here's the Eisai release (PDF)