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IMI | The Innovative Medicines Initiative
EFPIA | European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations

logo Orion Pharma

Orion Pharma Research and Development
Tengstrominkatu 8, P.O. Box 425

Participant's Lead

Jukka Sallinen Jukka Sallinen
Head of CNS Research 
E-Mail to Jukka Sallinen Contact  

Institute Presentation

Orion's Mmission is building well-being and Orion's vision is to be an innovative European, R&D-based, pharmaceutical and diagnostic company with a special emphasis on developing medicinal treatments and diagnostic tests for global markets.

Orion invests an annual average of about 15% of its net sales in research and product development. The focus in Orion’s pharmaceutical R&D is on early research, i.e. preclinical as well as clinical Phases I and II, whereas the large-scale Phase III trials are preferred to be conducted together with partners selected for further development and marketing. Research is increasingly done in collaboration with other pharmaceutical companies also in the early phases of R&D with an aim to develop new, innovative medicinal treatment approaches for unmet medical needs.

In Orion, there are almost 600 professionals working in R&D. We are based at four R&D offices: Espoo, Turku and Kuopio in Finland and Nottingham in the UK.
The corner-stones of our work are always science and patients. Deep understanding in science, wide co-operation in expert networks in and outside Orion, and we are continuously improving and optimising our processes.

R&D has research and development on-going in each of the therapy areas of proprietary products in Orion: Central Nervous System (CNS) medicines, Oncology and Critical care, and Inhaled medicines (Easyhaler). In addition, R&D is working on Animal Health and Specialty Products.

Central Nervous System (CNS) Therapy Area includes medicines for the treatment of neurological and psychiatric diseases. Also pain medicines with a central mode of action belong to the CNS Therapy Area. There are several experienced drug development professionals and experts with academic merits developing new medicines for CNS indications at Orion Pharma.

Orion has extensive basic scientific research experience in the field of adrenergic alpha2 receptors, which has already yielded four proprietary drugs for Orion. Latest developments within CNS therapy area include a specific alfa2C-receptor blocker, currently in the clinical Phase. None of the currently marketed drugs have a similar profile of mode of action. Possible indications for this molecule include for example, schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s disease. In conjunction to this project we have managed to develop, in close collaboration with scientists in Turku PET centre, an interesting novel alpha2C-AR PET –tracer [11C]ORM-13070. Whether this ligand can be used as a tool to investigate norepinephrine –linked neurochemistry in both experimental animals and humans is one of the first identified translational tasks in the NEWMEDS project. Orion has also 20 year experience in characterisation of novel pharmaceutical compounds in behavioural pharmacological rodent models and we are happy to bring our experience to the NEWMEDS project validating new translational models that are needed especially in the field of schizophrenia.

16 Orion Pharma