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Merck & Co., Inc.

Drug Names(s): SAHA, suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid, Vorinostat, MK-0683

Description: Vorinostat is a histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor. HDACs catalyze the deacetylation of the amino terminal lysine residues of the core nucleosomal histones, an activity implicated in chromatin remodeling and the transcriptional regulation of cell-cycle and differentiation regulatory genes. Therefore, Vorinostat exerts its antitumor effects by regulating the expression of tumor survival genes.

Deal Structure: In June 2011, Merck (MSD) and Taiho Pharmaceuticals entered into a distribution agreement to market Vorinostat for the treatment of cutaneous T-cell lymphomas in Japan. Under the agreement, Taiho will promote and distribute Vorinostat in Japan following the receipt of marketing approval. MSD therefore will be the marketing authorization holder of the drug, while Taiho wil be the distributor.

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