Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. and Xenon Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced a license and collaboration agreement to develop first-in-class treatments for epilepsy. Neurocrine Biosciences gains an exclusive license to XEN901, a clinical stage selective Nav1.6 sodium channel inhibitor with potential in SCN8A developmental and epileptic encephalopathy (SCN8A-DEE) and other forms of epilepsy, including focal epilepsy. In addition, Neurocrine Biosciences gains an exclusive license to pre-clinical compounds for development, including selective Nav1.6 inhibitors and dual Nav1.2/1.6 inhibitors. The agreement also includes a multi-year research collaboration to discover, identify and develop additional novel Nav1.6 and Nav1.2/1.6 inhibitors. "We are excited to enter into this agreement with Xenon and leverage their expertise in precision medicine drug discovery to benefit the lives of people with epilepsy and serious neurological disorders," said Kevin Gorman, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Neurocrine Biosciences. "The agreement with Xenon strengthens Neurocrine Biosciences' diverse and growing pipeline and reinforces our long-term commitment of becoming a leading neuroscience-focused biopharmaceutical company." "With its proven expertise in developing and commercializing treatments for neurological disorders, we believe Neurocrine Biosciences is an ideal partner to maximize the potential value of XEN901 for patients," said Dr. Simon Pimstone, Chief Executive Officer of Xenon. "Importantly, this collaboration represents a significant investment in XEN901 and Xenon's earlier-stage Nav1.6 and Nav1.2/1.6 inhibitor programs and allows for a broader development of these promising compounds than we could accomplish independently. Furthermore, the additional capital from this transaction will support our efforts to advance and expand our proprietary pipeline."