Alkermes reveals a new drug candidate, ALKS 7119, for treatment of Alzheimer’s agitation, depression and other central nervous system (CNS) diseases.

Alkermes has successfully completed preclinical development and expects to initiate the first clinical study of its newest candidate, ALKS 7119, in the third quarter of 2015. ALKS 7119 has a multivalent mechanism of action that acts on key receptors in the brain involved in several CNS diseases, including agitation in patients with Alzheimer’s disease, major depressive disorder (MDD) and others. Alkermes intends to file an Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the second quarter and, subsequently, begin clinical trials.

Elliot Ehrich, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of Alkermes, commented: “ALKS 7119 exemplifies the continuing productivity of R&D at Alkermes and our distinctive approach to creating medicines designed to offer meaningful value for patients, their caregivers and the healthcare system. Based on results and observations to date, we believe that the multivalent mechanism of ALKS 7119 has the potential to impact a range of CNS diseases. We will begin with addressing agitation associated with Alzheimer’s disease and look forward to beginning our clinical program later this year.

Headquartered in Dublin, the company has a diversified portfolio of more than 20 commercial drug products and a substantial clinical pipeline of product candidates that address central nervous system (CNS) disorders such as addiction, schizophrenia, depression and multiple sclerosis.

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