Wed, 02 Oct 2019 11:00:02 CEST <![CDATA[UCB RSS Feed]]> <![CDATA[UCB at MDS 2019: Our proud mission to help patients with PSP]]> UCB at MDS 2019: Our proud mission to help patients with PSP]]>Posted by Alexander Klein, Patient Value Unit Neurology.
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Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is a rare, seriously debilitating neurodegenerative brain disorder, marked by severe motor and cognitive symptoms such as balance and walking, speech, swallowing, vision, mood, behaviour and thinking.

As the name suggests, people with PSP often suffer rapid disease progression, having a life expectancy of approximately 6? years from symptom onset. The condition is characterised by a loss of brain cells, thought to be due to an accumulation of a misfolded protein called “tau? Importantly, there is no known cure available for PSP, and no treatments to slow down, halt, or reverse the inevitable cognitive-motor decline experienced. The only available treatment options for patients are to help to manage symptoms.

Given the urgent need to provide hope for individuals living with PSP, UCB is extremely proud to be participating in the International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders (#MDSCONGRESS), September 22-26, 2019 in Nice, France.

Building on our long-standing heritage in Parkinson’s disease, the meeting provides us with a unique opportunity to engage with the global movement disorder community, to learn more about their needs, perspectives and experiences, and to reinforce our commitment to progressing treatment solutions for people living with movement disorders, including Parkinson's disease and PSP.

The UCB Tau Mission team will also be hosting a medical exhibition throughout the congress, providing insights into lived PSP patient experiences and sharing information from patient organisations around the world.

To find out more about PSP, click here

Read more about anti-tau antibodies in neurodegenerative diseases here.

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<![CDATA[ITP Awareness Week: UCB proud to support global ITP community ]]> ITP Awareness Week: UCB proud to support global ITP community ]]>Posted by Blair Robertson, Patient Value Unit Neurology.
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Given it is sometimes referred to as an ‘invisible illness? it might not come as a surprise that Immune Thrombocytopenia, or ITP as it is commonly known, often receives little public attention. A frequently debilitating condition, ITP is a rare, autoimmune disease affecting around 10 in every 100,000 people across the world, often in very different ways.

UCB is very excited to help shine a light on ITP by supporting the International ITP Alliance to spread the word about Global ITP Awareness Week (September 23 ?27, 2019). This global movement aims to provide a voice to people living with ITP and create a deeper understanding of ITP around the world.

In people living with ITP, their body mounts an attack to destroy healthy blood cells or ‘platelets?resulting in wide-ranging symptoms including severe fatigue, bruising that may never go away, and spontaneous nose or gum bleeding, heavy menstrual bleeding and increased risk for life-threatening bleeds. Due to fatigue and the increased risk of bleeding, ITP can be significantly life-limiting, where patients are unable to participate in things that mean the most to them, such as their careers, hobbies, and spending time with those they care about. As such, people living with ITP may become isolated and depressed, lose self-confidence, and be embarrassed by aspects of their ITP.

UCB is very proud to be working alongside the global ITP community - during this awareness week and beyond - to share and learn more about real-world experiences and perspectives of people and healthcare professionals living with and managing ITP every day.

We’ve created an infographic to help broaden and improve understanding of this often-hidden condition. You too can help spread awareness of ITP by taking a look at the infographic and sharing it here.

As a leading global biopharmaceutical company, with a rich heritage in developing immunotherapeutic solutions to support patients living with severe and chronic conditions, UCB is committed to applying our science, passion and knowledge and to working closely with the global ITP community to help improve outcomes and experiences for people around the world living with this condition.

Find more resources and ideas about how to support ITP Awareness Week on the International ITP Alliance website www.globalitp.org.

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<![CDATA[Osteoporosis ?addressing the ‘silent epidemic?]]> Osteoporosis ?addressing the ‘silent epidemic?]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Experts consider osteoporosis to be a silent epidemic which is neglected and under addressed, according to new survey.

At UCB, we are committed to improving the lives of people with serious conditions. In addition to engaging with patients, we frequently work with health professionals to understand their perspective on how diseases are managed and what more could be done to deliver for patients.

In August, we launched a survey of European healthcare professionals specialising in bone medicine. Our goal was to investigate attitudes and perceived prioritisation of osteoporosis and fragility fractures in eleven countries: Germany, Spain, France, the United Kingdom, Netherlands, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Poland and Romania. A total of 401 specialist healthcare professionals were interviewed online in August and September.

Most (82%) specialists said they believe osteoporosis is a ‘silent epidemic? yet only 24% said their healthcare system is adequately prepared to support people living with the condition. Two thirds (66%) agreed that osteoporosis is a ‘neglected condition?and just 10% think it is currently prioritised by their local health authorities. This is despite osteoporosis affecting 200 million people worldwide and resulting in a fracture every three seconds.

With osteoporosis rates set to rise as populations age, most specialists (90%) believe osteoporosis should be a public health priority, and 91% agreed that effective management can improve outcomes and reduce costs.

The majority (84%) of specialists also agreed that increased awareness and understanding of osteoporosis is needed for general practitioners (GPs), and only 32% believe that GPs refer suspected osteoporosis diagnoses in a timely manner.

Patient understanding of osteoporosis may also be lacking. More than half (53%) of specialists responding to the survey believe their patients view the condition as a short-term concern ?despite clear evidence of its long-term impact on quality of life and independence.

These findings are of serious concern. Fragility factures can significantly impact people’s lives, yet policy makers, physicians and even patients may not appreciate the true burden of this disease.

UCB will continue to work with all partners to improve the effective management of osteoporosis and, ultimately, reduce the pain and suffering it causes. Together, we can break the silence.

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<![CDATA[Diversity & Inclusion: Why it matters to UCB]]> Diversity & Inclusion: Why it matters to UCB]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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UCB has been named among the Top 25 companies in the 2019 Diversity & Inclusion Index. This reflects our continued efforts to ensure that our workforce reflects the wider community.

Diversity and inclusion matter here at UCB. We want to bring life-changing medicines to patients around the world and to play an active, positive role in the communities where we operate. It is vital that our teams are connected to our local and global communities; that we see ourselves in those we serve and that our patients see themselves in us.

This approach is good for our company. By embracing diverse talents, motivating our people, and leveraging diversity of thought and experience, we can maximise the value we create for patients.

That is why we strive to attract diverse talent to our teams and ensure that they have a path to career progression within the organisation. After all, diversity is nothing without inclusion: it is simply not enough to have a diverse workforce if this is not reflected at all levels within the company. Diversity has most value when it is matched with inclusion; when diverse voices are heard from the manufacturing line to the boardroom.

We are proud to see our efforts continuing to pay off. It was heartening to see UCB featured, once again, in the top 25 of this year’s Diversity & Inclusion Index which ranks the most diverse and inclusive workplaces across multiple industries.

The Index is compiled by Refinitiv, based on environmental, social and governance (ESG) data reviewed by trained analysts. The dataset draws on a range of public information sources to provide an up-to-date, objective and comprehensive measure of whether companies are living up to their promises of delivering great diversity and inclusion.

From this large data pool, 24 key metrics are used to score 7,000 listed companies under four pillars: ‘Diversity? ‘Inclusion? ‘People Development?and ‘Controversies? We hope that this data inspires talented individuals to consider careers at UCB, and that it shows the wider business community that we are a forward-thinking ?and forward-acting ?organisation.

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<![CDATA[Can virtual reality make a real difference in arthritis? ]]> Can virtual reality make a real difference in arthritis?  ]]>Posted by Paul Atherfold, Patient Value Unit Immunology .
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UCB is backing a new VR programme designed to improve education and care of people living with rheumatoid arthritis

Advances in medical science have helped us to bring life-changing medicines to people with autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis. However, communicating the complexity of disease and innovative therapies to patients can be challenging.

It is important that people being treated for autoimmune disease understand what is happening in their body and how their medicines help to address the problem. Not only are people entitled to a clear explanation of the medical care they are receiving, understanding how medicines improve symptoms motivates them to take their medication.

So, how can we address the challenge of improving compliance with medication prescribed by clinicians? At UCB, our commitment to innovation is not confined to drug development. We are constantly exploring how new tools can deliver value for patients.

That is why we are partnering with Cognitant to bring virtual reality (VR) technology to people with rheumatoid arthritis. Through a VR programme at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in the UK, people prescribed medication for rheumatoid arthritis will be offered an immersive programme featuring virtual consultations with a consultant rheumatologist and nurse.

Developed in partnership with Cambridge Arthritis Research Endeavour (CARE), the programme will help patients to understand all aspects of their consultation, and in turn, better self-manage their disease. Patients will be offered an interactive explanation of their disease process and the mode of action used to treat it. The VR technology provides a 360-degree video demonstrating the administration of the medication, and a series of infographics and virtual objects to aid knowledge retention.

We are excited to learn how people using the technology respond to this innovative educational tool. Our hope is that it will help them to stick with their prescribed therapy and, ultimately, deliver better outcomes.

This collaboration represents a new approach to care in which clinicians not only recommend medication but also prescribe high-quality interactive health information. Doctors will provide patients with a link or a QR code allowing them to access an app which unlocks their VR experience.

The initiative also reflects UCB’s commitment to partnership. By working with a technology partner, a charity and a leading hospital, we aim to empower patients to take control of their health and live their best lives.

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<![CDATA[Can virtual reality make a real difference in arthritis? ]]> Can virtual reality make a real difference in arthritis?  ]]>Posted by Paul Atherfold, Patient Value Unit Immunology .
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Advances in medical science have helped us to bring life-changing medicines to people with autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis. However, communicating the complexity of disease and innovative therapies to patients can be challenging.

It is important that people being treated for autoimmune disease understand what is happening in their body and how their medicines help to address the problem. Not only are people entitled to a clear explanation of the medical care they are receiving, understanding how medicines improve symptoms motivates them to take their medication.

So, how can we address the challenge of improving compliance with medication prescribed by clinicians? At UCB, our commitment to innovation is not confined to drug development. We are constantly exploring how new tools can deliver value for patients.

That is why we are partnering with Cognitant to bring virtual reality (VR) technology to people with rheumatoid arthritis. Through a VR programme at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in the UK, people prescribed medication for rheumatoid arthritis will be offered an immersive programme featuring virtual consultations with a consultant rheumatologist and nurse.

Developed in partnership with Cambridge Arthritis Research Endeavour (CARE), the programme will help patients to understand all aspects of their consultation, and in turn, better self-manage their disease. Patients will be offered an interactive explanation of their disease process and the mode of action used to treat it. The VR technology provides a 360-degree video demonstrating the administration of the medication, and a series of infographics and virtual objects to aid knowledge retention.

We are excited to learn how people using the technology respond to this innovative educational tool. Our hope is that it will help them to stick with their prescribed therapy and, ultimately, deliver better outcomes.

This collaboration represents a new approach to care in which clinicians not only recommend medication but also prescribe high-quality interactive health information. Doctors will provide patients with a link or a QR code allowing them to access an app which unlocks their VR experience.

The initiative also reflects UCB’s commitment to partnership. By working with a technology partner, a charity and a leading hospital, we aim to empower patients to take control of their health and live their best lives.

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<![CDATA[#MaybeBaby: supporting young people in the UK and Ireland living with arthritis or psoriasis]]> #MaybeBaby: supporting young people in the UK and Ireland living with arthritis or psoriasis]]>Posted by Karen Borrer, BII Communications.
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Being diagnosed with an inflammatory condition like arthritis or psoriasis at an early age can be a shock. It can leave some young people worrying that they will never visit the places they want to, have the job they dreamed of, find the partner they deserve or become a parent.

To support them in managing this concern and to help them ask the right questions at the right time, UCB has teamed up with Arthur’s Place, the award-winning social network in the UK for young adults with arthritis. Together, we are encouraging women in particular to think about their future life goals and discuss these with their doctor at an early stage.

For some young women, pregnancy and motherhood may be so far in their future they haven’t even considered it. For others, it’s something they think they will miss out on due to their condition.

However, for young women living with rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis or psoriasis, motherhood is very much an option, which can be supported by asking questions, thinking ahead and planning treatment options with their doctor.

The #MaybeBaby campaign offers vital support at a crucial time in young people’s lives.  UCB has created a dedicated MaybeBaby section on Arthur’s Place. It features an animation about living with a diagnosis of inflammatory arthritis, expert commentary, and the Little Guide to Good Questions to help patients and clinicians start a conversation about managing the condition to maximise the patient’s life goals.

The project has inspired real-life stories from women with inflammatory arthritis which have been published in online lifestyle magazine Refinery 29, the UK’s number one digital female publisher.

An influencer marketing campaign with support from key figures on Instagram, an author and a blogger, is helping to raise awareness of MaybeBaby in the UK and Ireland. Launched in  May 2019, the campaign has reached more than 800,000, mainly young women, through social media interactions.

To complement the patient project, the MaybeBaby team has also developed resources to support healthcare professionals (HCPs) in asking their female patients whether they have future plans for motherhood.

At UCB, we see this MaybeBaby project as a valuable partnership delivering real value for the patient community at a time when they need it most. We look forward to supporting this rapidly-growing initiative as it continues to reach young people with inflammatory conditions.

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<![CDATA[Life in the lab: Students sample life as a UCB scientist]]> Life in the lab: Students sample life as a UCB scientist]]>Posted by Karen Borrer, BII Communications.
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What’s it really like to be a scientist working on medicines development? UCB gave school students a chance to find out.

The labs at our Slough site in the UK welcomed a group of 15 to 17-year-olds for four days of hands-on work experience as part of UCB’s annual Work in Science Week, designed to let students sample life as a scientist.

More than 80 UCB staff provided the 37 students with practical sessions covering topics ranging from protein purification and crystallography, to spectroscopy and virtual reality. The students also learnt about medical devices, patient safety, pharmacovigilance and marketing products.

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The 26 girls and 11 boys, all studying science and interested in pursuing a career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects, came from local schools or through In2ScienceUK, a charity which seeks to enable young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to study science.

The aim of Work in Science Week, which has been running for seven years, is to highlight the wide range of scientific careers available in industry and inspire the next generation of scientists to consider a career in pharma.

This year’s students also met several of UCB’s apprentices who shared their stories of working in industry, including Martin Domville, an apprentice in Immuno-Bone Discovery Research who was a participant in Work in Science Week in 2013. Martin loved it so much he joined the company!

Perhaps some of those attending Work in Science events at UCB’s Slough plant will become the scientists of tomorrow.



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<![CDATA[Walking the talk: thanks to UCB's strong financial performance, we are investing in future growth]]> Walking the talk: thanks to UCB]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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UCB continues to invest in R&D ?sticking to our ambition of creating value for patients

These days, just about every company talks about investing in innovation. At UCB, we have been doing so for some time now, and we match words with actions: we are walking the talk. UCB is, as planned, accelerating investment in R&D in areas where specific patient populations face unmet medical needs.

Our capacity to invest in our future is made possible by the great performance of our existing business. As the UCB Half Year Report 2019 shows, company revenues have reached ?.3 billion (+2%, +4% CER ). Net sales for the first six months of 2018 hit ?.2 billion. This delivered underlying profitability (rEBITDA ) of ?724 million (-9%, -1% CER) or a ratio of 31% - driven by higher marketing and selling as well as R&D expenses.

The report also contains some good news from our promising late-stage pipeline. 2019 has already seen two product approvals and the start of four new phase three trials in psoriatic arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis, drug-resistant focal epilepsy and myasthenia gravis. There were also positive phase three results for one of our core epilepsy medicines.

I’m particularly impressed by the launch of those four late-stage clinical programs over a six-month period. I cannot recall such a strong period of R&D activity in UCB’s illustrious nine-decade history.

The company’s performance in the year to date means we are in a position to confirm the 2019 financial outlook. Revenue is expected to reach ?.6 - ?.7 billion; recurring EBITDA should reach 27-29% of revenue; and core earnings per share is expected to be ?.40 - ?.80.

From my perspective, the UCB Half Year Report 2019 tells us that we are performing as expected and that we are meeting our commitments to invest in research and development that could deliver real value to patients. This means we are not only doing the right things in the present, but doing what’s best for the future.

All the best wishes to you ?if you would like to chat with me, you know where to find me. Take care!

For more details, download our UCB Half Year Financial  Results or contact me directly: Antje.Witte@ucb.com.

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<![CDATA[Can wearable sensors add value for Parkinson’s patients?]]> Can wearable sensors add value for Parkinson’s patients?]]>Posted by Babak Boroojerdi, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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Digital technologies have the potential to monitor a wide range of patient outcomes, helping researchers to develop treatments that improve lives.

The global burden of Parkinson’s disease (PD) is rising. From an estimated 2.6 million people in 1990 to 6.3 million in 2015, the severe neurological condition is forecast to affect 12.9 million people by 2040 as global populations age.

There are a number of new medicines in the pipeline but researchers face several challenges in PD drug development. One of the key issues is the lack of precision in measuring outcomes. If we want to be sure that new therapies add value for patients, it is vital that we track outcomes that matter to them.

A promising way of doing this is to embrace digital technologies such as wearable sensors. These allow researchers to passively collect data during the day as patients go about their lives. Capturing both motor and nonmotor symptoms gives a more holistic picture of patients?symptoms and quality of life than the snapshot offered through doctor-patient interactions at a clinic.

However, despite rapid progress in digital technologies, there are gaps that remain to be addressed before they are ready for use in clinical trials. Through the Critical Path for Parkinson’s (CPP) initiative, UCB is working with other research-based biopharma companies, and engaging with regulators, to explore ways of incorporating wearables into PD research and care.  The CPP is a global public-private-partnership led by the Critical Path Institute (C-Path). UCB took part in a meeting with the FDA in May 2019 on the use of wearable technologies in Parkinson’s disease.

The WATCH-PD (Wearable Assessments in The Clinic and Home in PD) is part of this collaborative effort to study the role of wearables in Parkinson’s. The research is designed to generate a set of candidate objective digital measures that eventually can be used to complement standard clinical assessments in measuring the progression of PD and response to treatment.

The 12-month study of PD progression in subjects with early, untreated PD allows the collection of digital data which can then be analysed and discussed with regulatory agencies. Using highly-sensitive sensors, researchers can objectively measure validated clinical signs frequently and remotely, and compare this with standard subjective clinical assessments.

Continuous measurement removes the bias associated with testing in the clinic. It employs devices with which patients may already be familiar such as smartphones and smart watches.  

Our collaborative and innovative approach demonstrates UCB’s commitment to working with others and embracing new technologies from outside the traditional healthcare sector. We hope wearables will accelerate the development of new therapeutic options for people with PD ?helping to improve quality of life by addressing outcomes that matter to patients.

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<![CDATA[Cognitive impairment research: pushing the boundaries of neuroscience ]]> Cognitive impairment research: pushing the boundaries of neuroscience ]]>Posted by Emmanuel Lacroix, UCB Ventures.
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People living with Alzheimer’s disease, other dementias and schizophrenia can suffer from cognitive impairment. This affects their memory, their ability to learn new things and concentration. It can limit their capacity to make decisions and live everyday life, often leading to loss of independence in severe cases.

Cognitive impairment is among the greatest areas of unmet medical need in society and it is rising. Our risk of dementia, for example, increases with age. As more people live longer, the number affected by cognitive impairment is likely to be higher.

The search for innovative therapies that can address cognitive impairment has led researchers to explore compounds that have a positive effect on brain activity. One potential treatment target is the synaptic vesicle protein SV2A, which plays an important role in the communication between neurons in the brain.

For UCB, this is an area where we have a strong record ?this protein is also linked to epilepsy. Our research in this area previously led our scientists to develop two important anti-epileptic medicines used by patients around the world.

Our neuroscience research also led to the design of another class of small molecules that affect the SV2A protein. These novel SV2A modulators, although lacking anti-epileptic properties, have shown promising pro-cognitive effects in preclinical studies. This means that they may have the potential to improve cognition in people living with diseases linked to cognitive impairment ?if the preclinical findings are confirmed in robust clinical data in the years to come.

Now, UCB has partnered with a group of Belgian and international investors to create a new company, Syndesi Therapeutics, to progress this promising area of research to the next stage. Syndesi Therapeutics has also gained additional funding from the Walloon Region, and has been working to further develop SDI-118, a novel SV2A modulator discovered by UCB.

We are pleased to see that SDI-118 has now entered a first-in-human Phase 1 study. This early clinical research investigation looks at the safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetics of single doses of the molecule in healthy subjects. Participants given the drug in the study will have blood tests and brain scans to help researchers understand its effect in the body.

If this proves successful, the research programme would move forward to studies looking at the effect of the molecule following repeated dosing and then on people living with cognitive impairment.

It is still early days, but we are encouraged to see Syndesi reporting progress in their work and excited to see what happens next. There is significant unmet need among patients with neurological disorders. UCB is pleased to support researchers aiming to bring forward new therapies that are of value to patients.
 
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<![CDATA[Investing in innovation: why UCB Ventures backs cutting-edge science]]> Investing in innovation: why UCB Ventures backs cutting-edge science]]>Posted by Erica Whittaker, UCB Ventures.
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 The pace of innovation in biopharma is accelerating dramatically. Over the past few years, there have been big leaps forward in areas such as gene and cell therapy, where decades of science are beginning to translate into new medicines. There is more to come ?offering fresh hope for innovative therapies that will improve the lives of patients.

These innovations begin with a bright idea, often in a university lab or in the offices of a biopharma start-up. For UCB, supporting an ecosystem in which some of these sparks of ingenuity can become the therapies of tomorrow is important. It is also vital that, as a company focused on small molecules and antibodies, we remain plugged into innovation and disruptive technologies.

That is why UCB Ventures was launched in 2017. Our task is to explore some of the most exciting advances in science and technology, and to offer investment and expertise to those we believe show the most promise.

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                                                                 The UCB Ventures' team

For early stage companies, venture capital is essential to validating their scientific ideas and developing their commercial potential. Without this support, the fruit of scientific endeavour would wither on the vine.

In return for backing start-ups at a time of high risk and uncertainty, venture funds typically receive equity in a company and can take a role on the company’s Board of Directors. In practice, this means that venture funds bring more than investment, they bring experience ?a vital ingredient for science-based companies where commercial knowhow may be limited.

There are two key factors we look for when deciding whether to offer support. First, it’s about the quality of the science. It’s important that the company has validated their ideas in some way ?perhaps in cells or animal models ?and that it has real novelty. We want to see concrete evidence that their work has the potential to make a significant impact for patients in an area of unmet need.

Secondly, it’s about people. When UCB Ventures makes an investment, it marks the beginning of a long-term commitment. A close relationship between our team and the young company is essential for its chances of success. Young companies are typically driven by people passionate about getting their technology to patients. When this is matched with a willingness to take advice from experienced professionals, there is real potential to forge a partnership.

Partnership is essential too in our work with other venture funds. When we decide to support a company, it is usually in the context of an investment syndicate ?a group of like-minded investors keen to roll up their sleeves and help a start-up achieve its goals.

These syndicates not only help to spread the risk, their diversity can bring real value to the table. For example, some venture funds have deep expertise in drug development, while others come with vast commercial experience or knowledge of technologies from beyond the health sphere. 

To date, we have invested in three companies ?all in areas considered the most disruptive in biopharma. In StrideBio, we are working with a biotech company at the leading edge of next generation gene therapy. They are trying to figure out a way to improve tissue specificity, while evading the immune system, making gene therapy more effective and accessible.

At end of last month we announced our investment in  Rinri Therapeutics, a company spun out of Sheffield University. Their innovative stem cell research seeks to reverse neuropathic sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL). This form of hearing loss affects millions of people around the world, often having a negative impact on their quality of life. It results from damage to hair cells or auditory neurons in the inner ear, both of which are currently irreversible.

In May we also announced investment in Locana, a US-based start up working on RNA editing technologies that could offer new therapeutic options for people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS or motor neurone disease) ?an area of considerable unmet need.

In all three cases, we are helping to catalyse innovation that has real potential. While we offer funding and expertise, we also bring a degree of patience to the equation. UCB has, in its 90-year history, a strong pedigree in investing for the future and looking beyond short-term gains. This has served the company ?and patients ?well, and we are pleased that UCB Ventures offers a new way for us to back a new generation of innovations.

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<![CDATA[UCB takes the lead for her at EULAR and WCD]]> UCB takes the lead for her at EULAR and WCD]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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UCB honored at EULAR 2019 meeting
UCB proudly received the FOREUM (Foundation for Research in Rheumatology) Platinum Recognition Award during the opening plenary session at this year’s Annual European Congress of Rheumatology (EULAR 2019) in Madrid (June 12 - 15).

FOREUM promotes health in people living with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases through effective research. Our ongoing partnership with FOREUM is critical for improving patient outcomes and furthering a more sustainable healthcare system.

Solving today’s complex healthcare challenges requires a multi-stakeholder approach to ensure effective and innovative medicines and technologies are available, accessible and affordable to all patients living with chronic rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases. Our partnership will further our ambition to bring novel solutions vital to improving existing care and quality of life for these patients.

UCB also showcased the depth of our immunology research with multiple presentations on the treatment of axial spondyloarthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, and psoriatic arthritis. We also presented patient research demonstrating the need to educate and engage women with chronic inflammatory diseases about their disease state and family planning.

Great presence at World Congress of Dermatology
UCB hosted a commercial booth and several key symposium sessions at The World Congress of Dermatology (WCD), in Milan (June 10-15). WCD is held every four years and attracts over 20,000 attendees interested in advancements in dermatology.

As part of our ongoing commitment to addressing unique considerations for women with psoriasis, UCB sponsored a symposium on the unmet needs of women of childbearing age with psoriatic disease, as well as meet-the-expert sessions on improving care for this important patient population. UCB also hosted a symposium on patient satisfaction in psoriatic disease and an evolved understanding of IL-17A and IL-17F, an important topic for improving psoriasis treatment.

Our achievements at both meetings are a strong signal to the community of our commitment to serving as partners in care, supporting patients, rheumatologists, and dermatologists dealing with challenging treatment situations and improving the clinical understanding of their needs. Our aim is to bring real world value to patients with significant unmet needs.

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<![CDATA[Find your groove this Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month]]> Find your groove this Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month]]>Posted by Kenza Seddik, Patient Value Unit ?Neurology.
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So, because MG plays differently for everyone, UCB is encouraging the global MG community to speak with one voice for the first-time during MG Awareness Month this June. As a result, people living with MG from countries across the globe - Finland, France, Germany, Spain and the US - have helped to co-create the My Groove campaign to share songs and knowledge about the condition.

My Groove explores how music can help support people living with MG and be a way to bring people together. All the music shared on social media using #MyGroove will be collated into a public playlist of the sounds that comfort and empower people living with MG.
This activity is part of UCB’s commitment that nothing about patients?experience will be developed without actual patient involvement.

Pilar, from Spain, lives with MG. She commented: “One of the most difficult things with having MG is you can’t know what symptoms you might experience, or whether they will be mild or serious, from one day to the next. This variability can leave people feeling very alone. My Groove uses the universal language of music to bring people living with MG together and support them in good times and bad.?br>
Also from Spain and living with MG, Raquel said of her musical selection, ‘Qué bien?by Izal: “This song reminds me that our bodies receive lots of information through our senses, and this is something that myasthenia should not be allowed to diminish. We must try to be free to seize the day.?br>
MG is a rare, chronic, autoimmune, neuromuscular disease, where voluntary muscles don’t respond well to the signals from the brain.4,5 This leads to a range of unpredictable symptoms which can vary in intensity, and worsen as muscles are used. Common symptoms are muscle weakness, blurred or double vision, speech problems and overall fatigue. If the muscles affected are involved in swallowing and breathing, the condition can be life-threatening. The impact of MG on daily life can be severe.Findyourgroove

As part of the My Groove campaign, UCB has co-created an infographic with people living with MG, to raise public awareness of the condition. The infographic is available to view in its entirety by clicking here

Although there is currently no cure for MG, a number of options exist to help manage the symptoms. Whilst treatments are effective for most, they do not help all people with the condition.

This June, you can help turn up the volume on this rare disease. Follow the campaign on #MyGroove, share the MG infographic, and support those living with MG.

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<![CDATA[How UCB can help ‘Women Deliver’]]> How UCB can help ‘Women Deliver? src=]]>Posted by Grace Xiao, External Engagement, Public-Private Partnerships.
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At UCB, we focus on severe diseases that have significant unmet needs. By putting patients at the heart of everything we do, we aim to enable people to live their best lives, delivering impactful solutions to patients.

We recognize that women have significant and unmet needs when it comes to managing severe, chronic conditions. That’s why we engage in dialogues with patients suffering from these diseases to understand where we may be able to provide them unique value.

As part of this ongoing conversation, we will join more than 6,000 world leaders, influencers, advocates, academics, activists and journalists in Vancouver for the Women Deliver 2019 conference (3-6 June 2019). The event will be the world’s largest on gender equality and health, rights, and wellbeing of girls and women.

Our values are closely aligned with Women Deliver in its drive to accelerate progress for girls and women everywhere. We are committed to sustainability, diversity and inclusion. This can be seen in UCB’s CSR programmes in Africa and China, as well as in our advocacy for women in leadership.

It is also reflected in our science. For example, our researchers conduct, where appropriate, additional studies to give women more information about the use of our medicines before, during and after pregnancy, and we actively promote bone health for women with our innovative science solutions behind us.

To share our work in these areas with Women Deliver attendees, UCB will host two side events during the conference. This first is a panel session (3 June, 9:00) focused on the issues faced by women of childbearing age.banners2_new

For women of childbearing age living with an autoimmune disease, managing their disease in pregnancy can create worry. UCB strongly believes that no woman should have to choose between her health and having a child. The side event aims to inspire attendees to spread this message globally, catalyse policy change, and empower women to have important conversations with their healthcare professionals to ensure they receive the support they need.

It will feature contributions from a range of panelists including representatives of advocacy organisations March of Dimes, the What to Expect Project, and Women Deliver, as well as medical experts and youth champions of reproductive health.

The second side event is entitled the Bone Gym: Movement for Change. Building on the Women Deliver Conference theme of ‘power? we will focus on the power in women’s bones. For women with fragile bones, power may feel like an impossible dream. A fragility fracture occurs every 3 seconds globally, but we are not powerless against these fractures. The Bone Gym is a uniquely interactive session that will show delegates how to build their strength and become a force for change for the women around them.

To attend our seminar, you don’t have to be wearing any special clothes, there’s no joining fee, and it doesn’t require any experience or fitness level ?the bone gym is for everybody. All you need is enthusiasm. Whether you drop by for 15 or 45 minutes, you will get a lot out of this unique experience.

Our team of Bone Gym personal trainers features Elizabeth Thompson, CEO of National Osteoporosis Foundation (USA) and author Barbara Hannah Grufferman, who will demonstrate why we believe that bone health matters ?and how you can help us in our mission to create better care for women with fragility fractures.
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We believe in partnership. We very much look forward to engaging with other Women Deliver participants and continuing our dialogue about how we can provide a meaningful experience for women, based on our passion in creating patients' value.

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<![CDATA[UCB: Proud to be part of the American Academy of Neurology Community]]> UCB: Proud to be part of the American Academy of Neurology Community]]>Posted by Jim Baxter, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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UCB colleagues from around the world are excited to attend the 2019 American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting.

This year, the meeting takes place in Philadelphia, USA, between May 4 -10, and provides a stage for the latest research and thinking to shared amongst the global neurology community.

UCB is proud to be hosting nine presentations at AAN 2019, illustrating our expertise, heritage, and commitment in this space. The breadth and depth of our data aligns with and reinforces our patient value driven approach to improving life for people living with neurological conditions.

We understand the extent to which neurological conditions like epilepsy can disrupt daily lives ?for patients, for caregivers, and for family members.

UCB is committed to addressing this challenge. Whether by developing new medicines, improving access to existing treatments, or pioneering ‘beyond the pill?solutions, UCB is actively involved in numerous initiatives around the world to help people live life at their ideal.

Alongside data on our current portfolio of epilepsy medicines, and research focusing on the overarching epilepsy landscape, we are proud to be presenting data describing proof-of-concept and safety data for our developmental anti-FcRn Antibody  in patients with moderate-to-severe generalized Myasthenia Gravis As with all our research, our FcRn development program harnesses perspectives from patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals with first-hand experience of this condition to help us ensure our science addresses real world needs.

We’re excited to be participating in this important forum for sharing neurological research and thinking, and for the opportunity to engage with researchers, healthcare professionals and advocacy organizations from around the world to help shape and improve the outcomes and experiences for people affected by neurological conditions.

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<![CDATA[Could anti-tau immunotherapy treat neurodegenerative diseases? ]]> Could anti-tau immunotherapy treat neurodegenerative diseases? ]]>Posted by Jean-Philippe Courade, Neurosciences TA Biology.
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new research publication in Brain, co-authored by scientists from UCB and the University of Lille, looks at how antibodies could help to combat symptoms and potentially halt the degeneration of brain cells, seen in neurodegenerative diseases.

Neurodegenerative diseases are associated with so-called ‘tau tangles? Tau is a protein found in all brain tissue. In people with neurodegenerative diseases, tau proteins build up into tangles and are believed to interfere with normal brain function.

UCB has been working with leading scientists at Inserm, the French National Institute of Health and Medical  Research, to study how anti-tau immunotherapy could improve the lives of people with these conditions. Their work, conducted in mice, has been published in a prestigious research journal. It evaluates two antibodies targeting tau proteins to determine their effects on disease onset and progression.
 
The study found that one of the antibodies effectively blocked the onset of disease progression in mice by preventing the formation of tau tangles. The antibody also prevented the spread of pathologic tau proteins to other parts of the brain in mice, which is commonly associated with disease progression. The same effect was not seen in mice given the other antibody that was tested.  

The paper is important because it shows not all anti-tau antibodies are equally effective and highlights a potential immunotherapy that warrants further research. The promising effects reinforce findings from previous invitro research, published last year in the prestigious journal Acta Neuropathologica, and further supports UCB’s commitment to moving ahead with clinical studies of its anti-tau immunotherapy candidate in humans.

The path from pre-clinical research to the patient is long and challenging. However, if an anti-tau treatment were identified and tested in rigorous clinical studies, it could be significant for people with tau-related diseases.

This field of immunotherapy, targeting extracellular tau protein, is a new and promising therapeutic approach that we are committed to pursuing in the years ahead. We are excited by the possibilities that lie ahead and look forward to sharing news of further developments.

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<![CDATA[ Getting personal: improving the lives of people with skin diseases]]>  Getting personal: improving the lives of people with skin diseases]]>Posted by Matladi Ndlovu, Patient Value Unit - Immunology.
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People living with inflammatory skin diseases often face a heavy disease burden and may experience significant physical and psychological discomfort, cycling through several therapies before finding an effective treatment. Despite many years of research, there are still significant gaps in the understanding of these diseases. UCB is committed to patients with inflammatory skin diseases, investing in underserved areas and breakthrough solutions that deliver unique outcomes.

To effectively treat people with chronic skin diseases, we must first understand the underlying causes and mechanisms of their symptoms, which in turn point us to who is going to develop severe disease and why. That is the goal of the first collaborative project in dermatology, dedicated to improving the lives of people living with the two most common inflammatory skin conditions: atopic dermatitis and psoriasis.

The BIOMAP (Biomarkers in Atopic Dermatitis and Psoriasis) project, in which UCB will work with 26 academic, five patient organisations and five industry partners , aims to address the main unmet need of why some patients have significant morbidity and an increased risk for associated conditions such as arthritis and asthma, by analysing data from more than 50,000 patients. The project held its first meeting in London on 11-12 April, 2019.

With ?0.8 million of funding from the Innovative Medicines Initiative, a major EU public-private partnership, this five-year collaboration will have a broad impact on disease understanding, patient care and future therapies.

The unmet need in dermatology is considerable. Atopic dermatitis and psoriasis affect more than 300 million people worldwide. These inflammatory conditions can affect people’s quality of life and are associated with an increased risk of arthritis and asthma; they are therefore a huge burden to patients families, care-givers and the healthcare system.

However, not all patients experience these conditions in the same way: there is variation in the onset, severity, progression and response to treatment of patients with these diseases.

The big question is why?

Scientists and clinicians working on the BIOMAP project hope to answer this by analysing the largest collection of patient data ever and performing advanced molecular investigations to identify biomarkers for variations in disease outcome.  This important initiative therefore hopes to provide new insights to facilitate early diagnosis and further understanding of disease progression.

The key to our shared success will be collaboration. By bringing together committed researchers with clinical, genetic and epidemiological expertise, and combing this with modern molecular analysis techniques and newly-developed tools in bioinformatics, we hope to move this field forward in the years to come.

If researchers can identify the molecular, genetic and environmental causes of variation in symptoms and disease progression, it may be possible to identify patient subgroups with different subtypes of disease, leading them to respond differently to therapy. That could take us towards a new model for disease classification which paves the way for a more individualised approach to therapy.

“The IMI Biomap consortium is an important initiative which will provide new insights to facilitate early diagnosis and further understanding of disease progression and is a step towards individualizing patient care. UCB is therefore delighted to participate as a partner co-leading several of the Biomap workstreams?said Emmanuel Caeymaex, Head of Immunology and Executive Vice President at UCB.

For more information on IMI Biomap, please check: http://www.biomap-imi.eu.

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<![CDATA[Changing the patient engagement paradigm ]]> Changing the patient engagement paradigm ]]>Posted by Alexandra Moutet, Patient Engagement and Advocacy.
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Patients should be considered as partners: developing solutions for patient should be conducted with patients.

Patients are playing an increasingly active role in the medicine development lifecycle. For example, companies and academics are engaging with patients to gather their perspective and even to co-create at key decision points along the medicine research and development continuum.

This makes perfect sense. By engaging with patients, researchers can ensure that they are trying to answer the right questions; by collaborating with patients in study design, companies can make drug development more efficient, of higher quality  and more patient-friendly; and by giving patients a seat at the table, regulators, payers and policymakers can contribute to build a patient-centred health system.

However, this approach is not yet mainstream. UCB is one of 34 industry and public players collaborating on the PARADIGM project designed to advance patient engagement focusing on three key decision-making decision points : research priority setting, design of clinical trials, early dialogue with regulators and health technology bodies. This 30-month project, running until August 2020, is funded through the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) ?a major European public-private partnership. UCB sits on the Steering Committee.

Participants are drawn from patient organisations, regulatory bodies, HTA bodies, academia, non-profit organisations, EFPIA, pharmaceutical companies, along with subject matter experts. One of the unique elements of this broad consortium is its inclusion of the voice of young people living with a medical condition, people with dementia, and unaffiliated patients. It will also look beyond Europe and connect with global patient engagement initiatives through the PARADIGM International Liaison Group.

PARADIGM will address some of the barriers and gaps to patient engagement and produce the practical tools and guidance needed to accelerate the routine engagement of patients in medicines development.

The project’s core goals are to make patient engagement the norm, to  develop metrics and frameworks to measure return of engagement from the perspective of different stakeholders, and to find a way to ensure the sustainability of the patient engagement strategy developed for all stakeholders.

For researchers, industry, regulators and others, the patient community is a resource that has been underestimated  for too long. By engaging, we will make the system better equipped to serve the stakeholders that matter most: patients.

For patients, meanwhile, PARADIGM is a chance to help reinvent medical research to meet their needs. This is the essence of a symbiotic relationship ?a genuine win-win opportunity.

UCB is fully committed to this approach. Together, we look forward to co-creating a roadmap for sustainable success, changing the culture of medicines R&D to focus on what matters to patients

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<![CDATA[From Patient, To Science, To Solution]]> From Patient, To Science, To Solution]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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We discover and develop medicines to help improve human health. Today’s evolving scientific knowledge and advancing technical capabilities are providing unprecedented opportunities to match unmet patient need with breakthrough innovation.

Nowhere is this more evident than in the discovery story behind our new FDA approved medicine for women with postmenopausal osteoporosis. It’s a tale of inspiration from an extraordinary place, and how we turned a genetic discovery into a new medicine ?it’s a journey from patient to science to solution.

This is a story involving NASA, mice in space and nearly three decades of research. It began with research that identified a new gene, which turned out to be the underlying cause of a genetic condition that results in bone overgrowth ?sclerosteosis.

At first glance, osteoporosis and sclerosteosis couldn’t seem more different since osteoporosis patients have bones that become weak and brittle while sclerosteosis patients don’t produce sclerostin and their bones are thicker and stronger than normal.

As sclerosteosis is the opposite of osteoporosis, our scientists hypothesized that the defective gene in sclerosteosis patients could possibly encode a novel regulator of bone formation, amenable to pharmaceutical manipulation, which could lead to a potential new drug target for treating low bone mass disorders such as osteoporosis.

By combining reverse engineering and genomics our scientists were able to turn a genetic discovery into a new medicine.

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<![CDATA[Improving the lives of people living with myasthenia gravis]]> Improving the lives of people living with myasthenia gravis]]>Posted by Blair Robertson, Patient Value Unit Neurology.
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Myasthenia gravis (MG) is a long-term auto-immune, neuromuscular disease associated with skeletal muscle weakness. It can affect the muscles of the eyes and face, resulting in vision, speech and swallowing difficulties.

At UCB, we are committed to developing meaningful solutions for people living with serious conditions, including MG. That is why we are pleased to support the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America (MGFA) National Conference (March 30-April 2) in Atlanta, Georgia ?close to our US headquarters.

The MGFA is the only national volunteer health agency in the United States dedicated solely to the fight against myasthenia gravis. MGFA serves patients, their families and caregivers. The MGFA Patient Conference is a key platform for highlighting the impact of MG, in the US. It has played an important role in raising awareness, improving understanding, and highlighting the need for improved management of this chronic autoimmune condition.

As a patient-driven event, the MGFA Conference ensures patient voices are heard and that a holistic view is taken of the condition. As reflected in the conference program, MGFA highlights clinical matters facing patients as well as quality of life issues such as sleep and general wellbeing.

This is a chance for us to immerse ourselves in the largest MG patient meeting in the world. We are looking forward to working with the Foundation to ensure that we address the needs of those who could most benefit from our solutions. UCB intends to develop our partnership with MGFA through a number of future projects.

Additionally, one of our senior Medical Directors, Ali Bozorg, will share insights from UCB’s research on a potential future therapeutic option for MG and describe how we’re engaging with patients and patient advocates on a forthcoming phase III study designed to move this medicine closer to the patient.

Alongside the conference, many of our colleagues will also be participating in the National MG Walk on the morning of March 30 ?an annual awareness-raising initiative organised by MGFA.

Together, based on insights and engagement with patients and carers, we aim to deliver solutions that expand treatment options ?for myasthenia gravis and as well as other serious medical conditions ?which can fundamentally transform patient lives.

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<![CDATA[Patient engagement key to improving epilepsy outcomes]]> Patient engagement key to improving epilepsy outcomes]]>Posted by Cédric Laloyaux, Patient Value Unit ?Neurology .
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Lancet Neurology.
 
The editorial asks why some people with epilepsy do not receive drug treatment, suggesting that some patients may not have confidence in their current treatment plan or diagnosis based on the dialogue between them and their healthcare professional. It also describes how these factors may contribute to poor outcomes.
 
The editorial goes on to suggest that, by allowing patients to participate in the clinical decision-making process, and by improving communication and patient education, it could be possible to improve treatment adherence and reduce the impact of epilepsy on patients?day-to-day activities.
 
These perspectives are very much aligned to UCB’s focus on improving patient outcomes through partnerships, our commitment to listening to patients and addressing their emotional needs, and our call to break down silos to create patient value.
 
UCB have recently embarked on a pioneering global initiative which aims to improve real-world outcomes for people living with epilepsy. The UCB Epilepsy Outcomes Project (EOP) features engagement with experts, patients and leaders in healthcare delivery innovation to focus on enhancing patient experiences.
 
By approaching the challenge of improving value from a variety of stakeholder perspectives, we hope to be able to provide recommendations and suggested models of care. This will help to deliver tangible benefits for patients and for the wider global epilepsy community.
 
This initiative will focus on three areas: communication gaps between patients and healthcare professionals about epilepsy and epilepsy treatments, factors leading to treatment gaps related to anti-epileptic drug selection initiation, and epilepsy diagnosis in emergency departments.
 
One key element of the project, the EXCEED (Enhancing eXpert Communication to Evolve the Epilepsy Dialogue) study, aims to provide a robust evidence base from which experts can develop guidelines and recommendations. This will support better dialogue, understanding and better treatment decisions and responses. Initial findings from this research are expected later this year.
 
These activities demonstrate our ongoing focus and commitment to epilepsy leadership. UCB will continue to work with stakeholders to improve experiences for people with epilepsy and progress towards eradicating the impact of epilepsy around the world.

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<![CDATA[10 year anniversary: annual immunology summit provides valuable, cutting edge education to global audience]]> 10 year anniversary: annual immunology summit provides valuable, cutting edge education to global audience]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Where do physicians from all over the world go when they want to understand the latest scientific innovations in immunology? They attend the 10th Annual Immunology Summit, exclusively sponsored by UCB for the last decade. The theme of this year’s event, held in Prague, March 14-16, was “Paving the way to disease control: have we reached the Summit??/div>

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UCB CEO Jean-Christophe Tellier addresses attendees at the 10th Annual Immunology Summit in Prague, March 14-16, 2019.

The Summit explored the concept of disease activity control and how it has evolved over time ?at different paces for different disease indications ?and the implications for clinical practice. Strategies for optimizing disease activity control from a rheumatological and dermatological perspective were discussed, while maintaining a strong focus on the patient’s perspective and collaborative care. The program was split into four sessions, each including panel discussions, audience response voting and workshops.

This event has continued to grow in popularity, with a 10% increase in attendance since last year. This year, 460 HCPs and 48 faculty from more than 30 countries attended the event. The summit included rheumatologists and dermatologists, for the first time.  UCB’s long term dedication to creating this annual Immunology Summit demonstrates our leadership in immunology and our willingness to bring forth dynamic learning programs that can truly bring value to patients by educating physicians and improving their care.

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<![CDATA[UCB goes to the Cyber Security Challenge Belgium ]]> UCB goes to the Cyber Security Challenge Belgium ]]>Posted by Lucy Setian, Information Technology.
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As part of our IT recruitment program, UCB is participating for the first time in the Cyber Security Challenge Belgium!
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The Cyber Security Challenge is a contest open to students from Belgian academic institutions, of bachelor or master’s degree with focus on information technology.
 
Joined by our partners from School 19, UCB is going to share more about how we are supporting the education of next generation IT professionals.
 
“IT is a key element that allows businesses to evolve and grow but technology alone is not enough. It takes the right people, passion, innovation and dedication to allow these changes to take place. Young professionals play a crucial role as they bring these elements forward when they start their career,?Tom Gilis, Head of IT Security at UCB.

Training and continuous learning have become even more crucial than in the past. The future success of the up and coming pool of talent is synergetic with UCB’s patient value strategy. As an example, last year UCB became one of 10 organizations dedicated to actively supporting and investing in the potential of today’s youth through the sponsorship of School 19 ?Belgium’s 1st coding school ?alongside Sophie Wilm؈s, Minister of Budget, and Xavier Niel, founder of 42 Paris and Silicon Valley.

You can learn more about how interactions between School 19 and UCB have impacted the next generation of IT talent from the teams of School 19 and UCB during the Cyber Security event, and experience the latest innovation in VR for drug design, while talking about the future of cybersecurity.

If you want to win some great prizes, and learn more about working at UCB - sign up at https://www.cybersecuritychallenge.be/

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<![CDATA[2018 marks the fifth consecutive year of profitable growth]]> 2018 marks the fifth consecutive year of profitable growth]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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Our full-year results are now out, allow me to highlight some of the key points. What stood out to me was consistent growth in recent years and our research and development investments in the future.

UCB’s strong delivery in 2018 marked the fifth year of profitable growth in a row. Revenue in 2018 reached ?.6 billion, an increase of 2% (or 5% at constant exchange rates (CER)).

Net sales increased to ?.4 billion ?a rise of 5% (or 8% CER). This was driven by our core products, sales of which rose 6% (10% CER). This helped the company’s underlying profitability (rEBITDA) to increase to ?1,398 million: up 2% (5% CER).

We are also pleased to share our financial outlook for 2019. This year, revenue is expected to be in the range of ?4.6 - 4.7 billion, with recurring EBITDA in the range of 27% - 29% of revenue, reflecting higher R&D investments.

It is also clear that we have a new blockbuster on our hands in the field of epilepsy. As this product reaches new markets, we are expecting sales to reach ?.4 billion by 2022. Our blockbuster immunology medicine is expected to reach ?.7 billion by 2024. To me, this suggests that the next five years could also be characterized by healthy growth.

And, as ever, we are looking beyond the short and medium-term horizons. The 2018 results and our 2019 financial outlook give us confidence to invest in the future.

UCB has a strong late stage pipeline currently offering six potential product launches in the next five years. Building on this solid foundation, we will accelerate our investments in future growth drivers ?new solutions that offer value for patients and move UCB forward. Let me know if you would like to discuss these 6 potential future options for patients.

For more details, download our Full Year Financial Results or contact me directly: Antje.Witte@ucb.com.

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<![CDATA[It’s not because it’s ‘Rare?that we care]]> It’s not because it’s ‘Rare?that we care]]>Posted by Chris Clark, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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By embracing this approach, we aim to connect targeted patient populations to cutting-edge science and, in doing so, deliver improved, differentiated experiences to people with the highest unmet needs.

One of our newest medicines in development, rozanolixizumab, is a novel biologic therapy being investigated for the treatment of multiple IgG (immunoglobulin G) autoantibody-mediated diseases. Currently available treatments are able to partially stabilize IgG autoantibody-mediated diseases. However, they can be invasive, burdensome, costly, and can negatively impact a person’s quality of life.

The development of rozanolixizumab exemplifies our approach to researching new medicines: We’re listening to and learning from people with first hand experiences of IgG autoantibody-mediated diseases and applying this knowledge to address some of the significant unmet needs they face.

We are leveraging and growing our capabilities to deliver value for specific patient populations new to UCB ?for example, people with Myasthenia Gravis (MG) and Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP). And, while MG and ITP have IgG autoantibody-mediation in common, they are quite distinct conditions each with unique patient experiences. We are striving to understand the unique factors which differentiate individual patient experiences for people with these conditions and tailoring our solutions to solve for these unique needs.

The FDA has recently awarded rozanolixizumab orphan drug status for MG ?building on a similar orphan drug designation granted to rozanolixizumab in ITP by the FDA and  European Medicines Agency in 2018. These decisions by regulators reinforce our strategy to bring new and innovative medicines which address well defined patient populations. Importantly, through these designations, the regulatory authorities recognize the potential of UCB’s unique science driven approach, and the impact our research and development activities could have for these very specific patient groups.

Development of rozanolixizumab dovetails perfectly with our overarching company strategy. We are committed to creating patient preference by responding to the specific needs of increasingly well-defined patient populations suffering from IgG-mediated disease, whether their numbers are small or large.

Many of these patient populations are supported by organizations which collectively will be marking International Rare Disease day on 28th February. Their activities will further highlight the importance of improving our knowledge and understanding of these conditions, the significant unmet need which unfortunately exists for many people, as well as the importance of our continuing to progress R&D efforts.

Currently, we’re proud to be actively engaging with patient and advocacy organizations around the world: Bolstering our knowledge, centering our activities on differentiating individual experiences, and ensuring the views of people who could one day benefit from rozanolixizumab are taken into account as early as possible. We are opening up new ground where previously our specific experience was limited - creating a reference point for these targeted patient groups at UCB and building authentic relationships that will be foundational in our aspiration to be leaders for the populations we serve.

We believe that our science, combined with our commitment to understanding the real unmet needs of patients, provides us with an opportunity to go far beyond current treatments. By redefining treatment goals and patient experiences, we have a unique and exciting opportunity to make a real difference.

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<![CDATA[New report puts spotlight on Patient Value]]> New report puts spotlight on Patient Value]]>Posted by John-Kenneth Billingsley, External Engagement.
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At UCB we place patient value at the centre of everything we do. In practice, this means understanding and responding to their needs. It means making their priorities our priorities.

To take this approach to the next level, we need to reshape our health systems to reflect patient needs and values. UCB is committed to playing an active role in catalyzing a global shift towards patient-centred care.

That’s why we supported a significant piece of work by The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). Launched at the Patient Value Summit in Biblioth؈que Solvay, Brussels, this new research assesses the state of play in patient-centred care and charts a way forward.

The EIU has launched two insightful documents as part of this project. The first, "Creating Healthy Partnerships", is a white paper for policymakers that analyses 11 indicators in a policy scorecard for nine high and middle income countries and features results of surveys of national patient groups from five serious chronic disease areas. It also draws on additional research and interviews with leading voices from the global health community.

The scorecard shows that national strategies and policies for patient-centred care have been widely adopted. However, implementation remains challenging, especially in countries with fragmented delivery systems.

The transition from disease-focused to patient-centred care models, where patients are participants in the decision-making process, has only just begun.  
The survey of patient advocates found that the two most important areas for patient-centred care are outcomes that matter to patients and the quality of the patient experience. The survey also revealed that providers should take account of patients?concerns about mobility and comorbidities ?looking at the individual in the round rather than taking a narrow view of a particular disease.

Patients also said they appreciate support in retaining self-sufficiency and maintaining good health. At UCB, we fully support this and are committed to helping patients live their lives to the fullest.

The White Paper is accompanied by a research background paper, "Adoption of Patient-Centred Care: Findings and Methodology", examining how nine high- and middle-income countries are incorporating patient-centred care, as well as how patient values and preferences are captured in policy approaches and care guidelines for five conditions. The countries included are Brazil, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, the UK and the US. The five conditions are Epilepsy, Healthy Ageing (osteoporosis), HIV/AIDS, Mental Health (depression/anxiety) and Psoriasis.

By taking this global perspective, the research offers opportunities for countries to compare their progress against peers ?and, crucially, learn from those delivering for patients.

The documents and supporting material produced by the EIU are available on a dedicated website: http://www.patientcentredcare.eiu.com/

We hope that this contribution to the conversation on patient value will add momentum to the global trend towards patient-centred care. Only by focusing on outcomes that matter to patients can we hope to fully realize the promise of patient-centred health systems.

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<![CDATA[New partnership with King’s College London enhances academic collaboration ]]> New partnership with King’s College London enhances academic collaboration ]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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This furthers our strategy of complementing R&D activity undertaken in its two major international research hubs in Belgium and the UK, with smaller satellite facilities that locate industry scientists in innovative environments conducive to building new capabilities.

Now we are adding a new satellite centre at King’s College London, UK. Over the next three years, leading UCB and King’s scientists will work together on-site at the Guy’s Campus ?where King’s is developing a Biotech Hub. There, they will combine their expertise to translate basic research into solutions for patients.

Under a three-year agreement, this collaboration is designed to help progress a potential new medicine into human clinical studies by 2020.

For UCB, one of the attractions of the UK ?on top of the UK’s vibrant life sciences environment ?is the potential to build on our numerous collaborations with leading universities.

Partnerships like our new collaboration with King’s will enhance our efforts to deliver for people living with severe diseases. Together, we can turn research into development.

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<![CDATA[Emotions matter - let’s listen]]> Emotions matter - let’s listen]]>Posted by Bharat Tewarie, Executive Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer.
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What do patients with severe chronic diseases want most from those aiming to address their unmet needs? The answer, according to a new study, is more emotional support.

As we discussed in a recent story, we need to break down the silos between healthcare actors to define, measure and maximize patient value: clinicians, payers, companies and patients often value different things.

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If we are to create a patient-centered healthcare system, the voice of patients must be centre stage. That is why a new paper published in the NEJM Catalyst journal is so important. The study, by UCB, ARTIS Ventures and Quid, shows that 75% of patient’s unmet needs related to emotional rather than medical issues.

It is a startling finding from a groundbreaking research collaboration. A team of researchers used natural language processing and machine learning to analyze over half a million patient comments on patient discussion forums. The result is the first and largest study of its kind to use artificial intelligence (AI) to identify unmet needs among patients with chronic conditions.

People, not patients ?rethinking the approach
People living with ten severe chronic diseases, including Alzheimer’s, diabetes, Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, breast cancer, osteoporosis, Parkinson’s disease, and epilepsy, were included in the study. More than 500,000 posts made between 2010 and 2018 were examined to gain insights into how healthcare stakeholders ?including physicians, policymakers and industry ?can do more to improve the lives of patients.

Six of the top eight issues consistently raised by patients related not to clinical symptoms but to quality of life issues, including the long-term emotional challenges that arise when adapting to chronic illnesses. Patients worry about how their daily life may deteriorate, how they will cope mentally with physical limitations, and how they might better manage their disease in the longer term.

The research found that the urgency of these emotional needs tended to grow over time: patients living with severe chronic illnesses became increasingly distressed by the limitations of their condition and the failure of the healthcare system to address them.

Building understanding, improving lives
Physicians, advocacy groups and other healthcare stakeholders have opportunities, and responsibilities, to address these emotional needs through greater awareness and education. The analysis shows patients want to understand their disease at a deeper level, both theoretically and practically.

While the internet has made it easy to collect information, patients lack the medical training to truly understand their condition. It is not enough to only inform them of steps to manage their illness, such as with a medication schedule, but instead take the time to explain the reasoning and science behind each medical step.
 
The root of many of these unmet emotional needs stem from uncertainty and confusion, which leads to anxiety and distrust. If healthcare stakeholders heed the very clear results of this study, we can all work together to provide people with severe chronic conditions a better quality of life.
 
This landmark paper helps us to see our work through the patient lens; it helps us to better appreciate patients?perspectives and supports our call for stakeholders to break down the silos and work together to deliver innovation that patients value.

We will make patients?priorities our priorities. At UCB, we are listening.

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<![CDATA[UCB is proud to be collaborating with Epilepsy Society in the UK to better understand, predict and treat epilepsy]]> UCB is proud to be collaborating with Epilepsy Society in the UK to better understand, predict and treat epilepsy]]>Posted by Dhaval Patel, Executive Vice President - Chief Scientific Officer.
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At UCB, we recognise the significant impact of epilepsy, which is why we focus on improving patient experiences and raising awareness every day.

In a further sign of our epilepsy commitment and leadership, we are very excited to announce a new collaboration with the Epilepsy Society in the UK.

This collaboration will involve a 2.5 million euro investment over 5 years and will focus on generating and analysing individual categories of data that have a role in determining a potential drug response - with an initial focus on the role of genetics.  In the latter phases, the emphasis will move towards integrating different types of data sets and understanding how they act together.  In this way, we hope to build a more complete picture of the drivers of treatment resistance in epilepsy, which will allow the exploration of ways to predict and treat it.

The long-term aim of the collaboration will be to use key insights from the research to design and develop improved, personalised approaches to the management of epilepsy, tailoring it to specific patient needs and genetic characteristics.

Through partnerships like this we’re able to broaden knowledge about how patients respond to medicines. By engaging with patients, listening to their feedback and first-hand experiences, and better understanding how multiple genetic factors could be contributing to their personal symptoms, we’re confident we can make a real difference to the millions of people around the world looking for support in managing their epilepsy.

This project is a great example of our strategic commitment to developing targeted, tailored medicine and will use cutting-edge science and data analysis to address significant unmet need in people with epilepsy who do not respond to currently available medicines.
We’re hugely excited by this new partnership and will be sure to keep the epilepsy community updated as the programme gets underway!

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<![CDATA[Making a positive impact around the world]]> Making a positive impact around the world]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Marrying the twin goals of growing a global business and being a good corporate citizen may look like a challenge. However, for people-focused organisations like UCB, corporate societal responsibility (CSR) is an essential part of what we do.

We strive to improve the lives of people with severe diseases, create an engaged and innovative workforce, and support projects in developing countries where there is significant unmet need. Far from being contradictory, UCB sees its CSR initiatives as supporting our core mission to improve lives.

As we explain in the winter edition of The European magazine, we are working with partners to improve access to health for people of all ages in low and middle-income countries (LMICs).

Shared responsibility
UCB has prioritized its CSR’s ‘Access to Quality Care?vision accelerating, together with partners, capacity building of health care professionals, improving community and family awareness of epilepsy, and decreasing health barriers for people living with epilepsy in selected countries. Our CSR department works under a ‘shared responsibility?philosophy.

In Africa, UCB supports six initiatives in five countries. Our partners, the Brothers of Charity (Belgium); Department of Neurology, Ghent University (Belgium); Department of Pediatric Neurology, KU Leuven (Belgium); Humanity and Inclusion (Belgium), DukeMedicine, Global Neurosurgery and Neuroscience (U.S.); OneFamilyHealth Foundation (U.K.); and the UCB Societal Responsibility Fund at the King Baudouin Foundation (Belgium), are essential to reaching our ambitious health targets.

We’ve had some notable success in Asia too. In 2013, UCB partnered with the Red Cross Society of China and, since then, over 2,500 village doctors of ethnic minorities in remote China from eleven provinces have been trained.

Close to 500,000 people benefitted from the knowledge and skills acquired. UCB also partnered with Project HOPE at the Shanghai Children’s Medical Center. The ‘Rainbow Bridge?initiative serves unmet needs of children living with epilepsy. Over 340,000 children and their families were helped with close to 2,400 doctors trained. Training on epilepsy is now also provided to school teachers and communities in order to reduce the stigma and barriers of social re-integration of those children.

Making an impact    
But strategies alone are not enough: we want to measure our impact. To track our progress, we set measurable targets for access to health for underprivileged people living with epilepsy. These targets are based on the results of the UN Human Development Index (HDI). Our green strategy uses the Ecological Wealth of Nations carbon footprint data, as an ecological ‘climate health?indicator.

We determine the right balance between carbon reduction and compensation using the ?a href="http://www.mingzhong1.com/our-company/Magazine/article/Applying-science-to-addressing-climate-change" class="" target="_blank">Science Based Targets? Carbon reduction targets are designed to make production sites target energy efficiency and renewable energy and to influence carbon reduction of suppliers and contract manufacturing organizations. Changing behaviors of employees at work and at home is also important. Carbon compensation is managed through reforestation and avoidance of deforestation initiatives in Ethiopia and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

UCB’s environmental stewardship efforts have resulted in a stringent, comprehensive and long-term strategy and action plan to be carbon neutral by 2030. This is in line with the ambitions determined by the ‘Paris Agreement?at the 21st sessions of the Conference of the Parties.

These efforts, guided by international goals, can lead us to a better future. We remain committed to finding innovative ways to grow and improve the world.

After all, what good is growth if it’s not good for the planet and its people?

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<![CDATA[UCB Iberia’s award-winning initiatives improve lives through technology]]> UCB Iberia’s award-winning initiatives improve lives through technology]]>Posted by Jesús Sobrino, UCB Iberia .
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Two innovative projects developed by UCB have been recognised for harnessing technology to improve diseases awareness, spark vital conversations and alleviate symptoms.

At the annual We Are Patients Awards (2018), hosted by the Spanish pharmaceutical industry, the #HoySiPuedo (#TodayICan) campaign was awarded for providing assistance, services and solutions to patients and society.

The project was launched through the Spanish Society of Rheumatology, along with six patient associations for patients with rheumatoid arthritis, spondylarthritis, psoriathic arthritis, lupus and other rheumatic diseases.

The goal was to encourage conversations between people living with these serious conditions and the HCPs. In particular, it offered support for women living with rheumatic diseases that want to plan a family.

The campaign was a big hit on social media, reaching more than 30 million people and sparking a flood of positive and hopeful messages from celebrities, actors, journalists and fashion icons.

The UCB Iberia team played its part in spreading the message to the world, proving that our team can be a key ‘influencer?in online conversations.

We were proud to be recognised for this collaborative initiative which brought stakeholders together to create value for patients by addressing an unmet need.

Parkinson’s app
UCB Iberia also celebrated two awards at the GoHealthAwards19. Again, #HoySiPuedo was honoured, along with the NeuroFit App. The GoHealthAwards recognize the entrepreneurship and innovation in health.



The NeuroFit App was launched in collaboration with the Curemos El Parkinson Foundation and with the support of the Atletico de Madrid Foundation. The aim was to raise awareness about the importance of daily physical exercise for improving Parkinson’s symptoms.

The free app was supported by an awareness campaign using the hashtag #QuelParkinsonNoTePare (#ParkinsonDoesNotStopYou), aimed at promoting physical activity. The app also offers tips on posture, mobility, balance and other exercises which help patients to overcome stuffiness, tremor, and slowness of movement.

As part of the campaign, a video was shown to thousands of sports fans attending a football match.

These two initiatives show UCB’s willingness to work with a broad range of partners and to embrace the latest technologies to improve the lives of patients. We are pleased that our efforts have been recognised by the health and pharmaceutical community, and encouraged to continue to play our part in supporting patients.

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<![CDATA[Breaking silos to create patient value]]> Breaking silos to create patient value]]>Posted by Bharat Tewarie, Executive Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer.
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What clinicians value is not always the same as what patients value. It’s time for a shared vision of value in healthcare.

In healthcare today, everyone is committed to creating patient value. At conferences and meetings, including this week’s World Economic Forum, there is no shortage of enthusiasm for value-based healthcare.

However, UCB’s message to leading thinkers in Davos is that we need to dig deeper to define value, if we are to measure it and maximise it.

The challenge we face is that value means different things to different people. We are all operating in silos. It is tempting to think that everyone understands patient value in the same way. Tempting, but mistaken.

Proof, if proof were needed, can be seen in a recent University of Utah survey in which patients and physicians were asked to select the five most important value characteristics in healthcare. A stunning 90% of patients chose different combinations from any combination selected by physicians. We are using the same word but speaking a different language.

Aligned definitions of value
To break out of our silos, we need to work together. We need to align our definitions of value and reward stakeholders accordingly for the value that is created.

If we can achieve this, the next step will be to measure patient value. This will mean collecting and analysing the right data. Without common definitions, agreed metrics, and a pathway for incentivising and rewarding those who deliver value, we cannot hope to reach our shared goals.
 
Patient feedback can help to move this process forward. The clinical outcomes that physicians tend to prioritise, and the affordability measures that interest payers, are no substitute for outcomes that matter to patients.

Patients take a broader view of value. They want their lives to be as normal as possible. They are keenly aware of their clinical symptoms, but also aware of their overall experience: how well they sleep, how they feel, are they able to spend quality time with their loved ones...

People with chronic diseases do not want to be defined by their condition and are not always impressed by subtle changes in objective clinical tests. They want to work and to enjoy themselves; they want a family life, a social life, a love life ?like everybody else.

The patient lens
At UCB we ask ourselves every day ‘How will the work I’m doing create value for patients living with severe diseases??We are committed to listen to the real needs and wants of our patients , break the silos and work with  other stakeholders to align on a definition and  measurement of what value means  for patients.

Of course, this cannot be done overnight ?we are on a journey together, but we must start with the essential step of breaking down silos.

Only by committing to a shared definition of value, and listening to what patients want, can we move to a future where we view value-based healthcare through the lens of the patient.

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<![CDATA[90 years of innovation, adaptation and progress]]> 90 years of innovation, adaptation and progress]]>Posted by France Nivelle, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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UCB is celebrating its 90th birthday. The company was founded by a family of entrepreneurs with a will to innovate. Today it is a strong and dynamic leader in neurology and immunology ?and ready for the next 90 years.

This landmark anniversary was celebrated at a glittering event in Brussels, attended by UCB leaders, past and present, as well as HRH Princess Astrid and Alexander De Croo, Deputy Prime Minister of Belgium. The event featured the presentation of a new book tracing UCB’s history over nine decades. A digital flipbook of this publication ?UCB:The First 90 Years ?is available online.

Over the decades, the company has evolved and adapted, working hard to stay ahead of the curve. Having made it through economic hard times, a war and many other challenges, UCB has shown the resilience of its founders.

Founded in 1928 by the Janssen family, UCB was originally a ‘hybrid?company. Its focus was primarily on chemicals but also on pharmaceuticals. The company has undergone several transformations. The current chapter in UCB’s history has seen it transition from a hybrid to a global pharma company.

Emmanuel Janssen would barely recognize the company today, yet it embodies his entrepreneurial spirit and passion for reinvention. UCB is now active in approximately 40 countries, focusing on immunology and neurology. Our medicines reach millions of patients in almost every corner of the globe.

Our way of working has also changed over the past 90 years. Modern medicine is powered by networks. We are constantly forging networks, internally and externally, because we know that collaboration is the key to success. Together with academics, health professionals, patients, industry partners and others, we are committed to turning science into solutions for those who need them.

We remain very conscious of our role and of our responsibility to help patients live the lives they want. Our goal is to deliver value to patients and to address unmet medical need. After all, what is the point of innovation if not to serve patients and their families?

As we look ahead to the next 90 years, we continue to be Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science.

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<![CDATA[Starting from a patient perspective focuses epilepsy treatment progress]]> Starting from a patient perspective focuses epilepsy treatment progress]]>Posted by Allyson Funk, US Communications and Public Relations.
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Read the full article on LinkedIn.

“Few health conditions cause as much disruption to daily life as epilepsy. Even with enormous advances in the management of this serious neurological disease, more than 2 million Americans and their families go through each day dealing not only with the risk of seizures, but also anxiety, depression, and social isolation associated with their disease.

“Our goal at UCB is to reduce the stigma of epilepsy, simplify control, streamline healthcare hassles, and improve life in between seizures. We aim to enable patients to live their own lives, chart their own path, and benefit from knowing more about all the possibilities. We call this, ‘My Epilepsy, My Journey.?/div>

“In short, it takes longer than it should for patients to get control of their condition. Many patients can take years to be diagnosed, then it can take several more years to get to the right specialist and still more time to experiment with the right combination of medicines to get epilepsy under control.  In the meantime, relationships, goals, career and family may have all suffered or been lost entirely as a result of the lack of control.  We must and we can do more to restore the years of damage that this disease can induce.

“This is why UCB seeks collaborative partners. One example is eliprio] , where UCB is working to harness the power of predictive analytics along with machine learning through its collaboration with various academic institutions and integrated delivery networks for the purpose of creating positive, disruptive change in the care management of patients with epilepsy. These solutions actively learn from the successes (and failures) of more than two million unique epilepsy patients to inform what is most likely to work for the individual patient in front of the physician at that very moment.

“We have also introduced a new integrated strategy to help deliver neurology treatments to patients who need them as fast as possible. We are reimagining how we engage with providers and patients to better understand their needs, adapt fast, and iterate quickly to meet those needs. Rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach, we know that patient needs are different in different areas of the country. To meet those needs we’re focused on local ecosystems so that we can customize solutions for patients specific to where they live. To do this, we have to be agile in how we collaborate to drive impact.

“By continually listening to patients, our business and innovation follows their needs first. UCB was founded on principles of innovation 90 years ago and innovating for patients is our guidepost today. Our singular goal is to help patients achieve their best, whatever that may be.?br>


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<![CDATA[Making our packaging ‘greener’]]> Making our packaging ‘greener? src=]]>Posted by Marc Van Meldert, Health, Safety and Environment.
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UCB aims to make every element of our business as green as possible. That is why we are rethinking our approach to packaging.

Until recently, our efforts were focused on being compliant with regulations and improving the user experience. We are now shifting our approach, giving greater importance to sustainable design and materials.

UCB recognises that improving our product packaging, through collaboration with patients and users, presents an opportunity to enhance the sustainability of our operations. Packaging design is an important part of delivering value to patients while reducing our products?environmental footprint.

Listening to public feedback on our products, including their packaging, is a central part of our commitment to improve what we do. The message we hear is that the production, transport and packaging of our products should minimise the use of plastics and maximise recyclability.

We are rising to the challenge of creating packaging that is greener, compliant with on-pack labelling requirements, includes measures to combat counterfeit drugs, meet cost constraints, and fulfils the need to make an emotional connection with patients, while enhancing patient compliance. This is a work in progress and we are committed to getting it right.
 
Greener by design
Along with improving the user experience, this collaborative approach is helping us to make packaging more environmentally friendly. We are prioritising the use of recyclable materials, responsible sourcing, resource recovery (recycling), efficient transport and distribution.

For example, by reducing the pack size while maintaining the same amount of medicines we can use less material and transport more products on each pallet. Reducing the weight of packaging also translates into lower use of fuel in transport.

In collaboration with patients and design experts, we have reduced the plastic content of the packaging on some of our leading medicines by as much as 85% and reduced the carboard content by 41%. By using recyclable materials and ensuring the packaging components can be segregated for recycling, we are applying the best in design thinking to optimise our packaging.

Collaborative design 
As some of our products are self-administered by patients with severe conditions ?such as rheumatoid arthritis or Parkinson’s disease ?the distinct needs of the user must be considered carefully.

For example, our new auto-click prefilled pen, used to deliver rheumatoid arthritis medication in Japan, was developed based on market research and input from users. Research showed us that ease of drug administration was a key concern for users and that patients in Japan valued simple, crisp packaging design.

By consulting patients and patient representatives, we will collaboratively develop best-in-class package designs that meet the needs of users while removing inefficiencies.

UCB continues to make sustainability and usability key priorities in the design of our products and packaging.  By making sustainability a design priority, we will further reduce our carbon footprint and our impact on the environment.

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<![CDATA[UCB’s commitment to epilepsy ]]> UCB’s commitment to epilepsy ]]>Posted by Allyson Funk, US Communications and Public Relations.
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Decades of research have improved the lives of people with epilepsy. However, there is still a lot of work to do to address the unmet needs of patients: One in three people with epilepsy live with uncontrolled seizures.

At UCB, we are proud to work every day to advance epilepsy care, and remain determined to help patients find answers that allow them to live seizure free. It is with this bold goal in mind that we work every day to turn scientific knowledge into solutions for patients.

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Our ongoing quest to find new epilepsy medicines is highlighted as part of the  Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America’s (PhRMA) GOBOLDLY campaign. The videos feature UCB’s Henrik Klitgaard shown side-by-side with longtime epilepsy advocate Loretta.


Henrik offers hope of future breakthroughs thanks to advances in genetics and the causes of neurological disorders. Having spent his professional life in epilepsy research, he is convinced that solutions will be found.

UCB is proud to GO BOLDLY and remains committed to helping epilepsy patients live their best lives.

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<![CDATA[A different perspective on clinical studies]]> A different perspective on clinical studies]]>Posted by Mitch Herndon, Global Clinical Science & Operations.
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Every day I brush my teeth. It’s so routine I don’t give much thought to how I do it. But what happens when I try brushing with the opposite hand? I have to learn how to brush my teeth all over again. Sometimes doing something from a different perspective helps us see things we couldn’t see before.

In the pharmaceutical industry, clinical research studies have been a routine part of our work for decades. These studies usually take place on a global scale with the goal of getting new medications and treatments into the hands of patients to improve their quality of life. Development plans are created, protocols are written, recruitment strategies are implemented, and studies are conducted. Yet, most of that work has often been done without one important perspective: the patient’s.

At UCB, we are focused on what patients value from idea inception through scientific discovery and clinical development and eventually, hopefully, until the solution can benefit them.

Pausing, and in some cases stopping, to involve patients, to seek their input, to listen, to go beyond empathy, to gain their perspective, and to see the view through their lens can be enlightening and contribute to better study outcomes. For clinical research to improve how it brings value to patients, we need to go beyond solely working for patients to consistently working with them.

Thankfully, this mindset of co-creation has gained strong momentum at UCB and globally over the past several years and there are many industry-wide efforts centered around patient engagement and patient centricity including the Clinical Trials Transformation Initiative (CTTI), Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), Patient Focused Medicines Development (PFMD), and the TransCelerate collaboration, just to name a few.

At UCB, we operate under a patient value strategy. Everything we do begins with the question: How will this create value for patients living with severe diseases? We are committed to learning from and with patients, using those insights to drive our science, to ultimately find solutions we can deliver to patients.

We partner with patients at various points across the clinical development continuum. Examples include:
  • Creating patient and caregiver advisory boards resulting in improved study design, patient engagement planning and patient-centric strategy development
  • Collaborating on recruitment approaches and study material design, leading to patient-approved and tailored messaging
  • Engaging patients to review select protocols, resulting in improved consenting processes, patient-friendly visit scheduling, and identification of training needs for site staff
  •  Implementing patient experience surveys as a best practice within studies to seek direct input from patients, parents, and caregivers on their thoughts and feelings related to their study participation
  • Collaborating with patients and a non-profit organization on the creation of lay summaries resulting in a new, patient-approved lay summary template for UCB studies moving forward
  • Conducting disease-specific focus groups and interviews leading to targeted patient recruitment messaging, awareness of specific social networks, and identification of logistical barriers to study participation
  • Having patients share their personal stories and experiences at study team kick-off meetings  and investigator meetings resulting in teams having a renewed focus on patients?daily challenges and burden beyond just the clinical perspective.
Recently we asked a woman living with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis to share her personal story with our study team. She spoke about how she had parked in a handicapped spot when she went to her doctor’s office and some passerby yelled at her saying, “you’re not handicapped.?The challenge with her illness is that it’s not something you can always visibly see, but every step she took hurt because of her joint pain.

For study team members to hear that story, it put the patient’s experience into context. Every point of contact with the patient is important. When someone comes to our clinic, we might think about reimbursing them for parking or enable them to park closer to the office, but what else can we do to ensure they feel supported and have the best possible experience? Anything we can do to empower patients and reduce their burden while participating in our clinical studies moves the needle.

While viewing clinical research through a patient lens is not yet the norm, we are making progress. There is no finish line; it’s not a race but a journey and one we want to take with patients and their families and caregivers. What better way to do that than to ask, listen, and create ?together. Patients and families are impacted by severe chronic diseases every day, and we want to make a positive contribution to bringing them what they value and helping them to live their best lives. That’s what it’s all about.

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<![CDATA[UCB’s performance in line with expectations for 2018]]> UCB’s performance in line with expectations for 2018]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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The first nine months of 2018 saw UCB record results which see the company on track to deliver on its financial outlook for the year. We were also pleased to report that people with epilepsy in China will soon benefit from our products.

As we pass the three-quarter mark for 2018, I’m heartened to see that the outlook we presented for the year is shaping up well. In a company active in markets around the world, delivering medicines for patients with a range of severe diseases, anticipating our financial performance is no mean feat.

Highlights from 9-month update
Let me share some highlights from our latest report. I’m particularly excited about our progress in China. In August, Chinese authorities gave the green light for the use of our established epilepsy medicine as a monotherapy.

The exceptional thing about this is how UCB used a pioneering "extrapolation" concept in securing marketing authorization. Based on data from the use of the medication as an adjunctive therapy, supported by sound scientific rationale, the product was approved for monotherapy of a certain type of epilepsy seizure.

In other words, UCB made the case for the medicine to be used on its own, based on information gathered from the use of the product as an add-on drug. In the world of medicines regulation, this is quite an innovative approach and brings the product much faster to the patients. Most importantly, we can now prepare to launch the product which will improve the lives of patients in China.

Meanwhile, UCB filed an application with the FDA in the US for the use of one of our products in non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis (nr-axSpA), and reported progress on a number of compounds in our R&D pipeline.

These developments may contribute to growth reported in future financial results. Returning to our nine months 2018 data, our five main products recorded strong growth, with revenue of ?.8 billion. This made a significant contribution to the overall revenue of ?.4 billion. For the full year 2018, revenue is expected to reach ?.5 - ?.6 billion, recurring EBITDA should reach ?.3 ?1.4 billion, and core earnings per share is expected to be between ?.30 and ?.70.

So, at this advanced stage of the year, the numbers are shaping up broadly as anticipated. Our next report will show the full picture for 2018 (in February 2019) and, we expect, be in line with the outlook we set out above.

Some of you might have noticed that we have a new addition the UCB IR team. Hope this serves you well as well ?let us know your feedback!

In the meantime, do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

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<![CDATA[World Psoriasis Day: UCB joins patient advocates in call for awareness and access to care]]> World Psoriasis Day: UCB joins patient advocates in call for awareness and access to care]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation .
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Psoriasis is a common, immune-mediated, inflammatory disease affecting approximately 125 million people around the world, or 3% of the global population. Symptoms include red patches of skin, covered in silvery scales; cracked skin that may bleed and thicken; and severe itching.

The awareness day is organised by the International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA), which UCB joined recently. The Federation and its 56 countries are organising awareness and advocacy events around the world. The goal is to improve access to treatment, increase understanding and build unity within the psoriasis community.

UCB is also playing its part in improving treatment options for people with psoriasis, with our medicine for adults with moderate to severe psoriasis having been approved in the US and EU earlier this year. We are pleased to bring this therapy to patients in an area of significant unmet need.

We continue to work on bringing new medicines to patients in the field of immunology and lending our support for global patient and advocacy initiatives.

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<![CDATA[World Arthritis Day: improving the lives of people with rheumatic diseases]]> World Arthritis Day: improving the lives of people with rheumatic diseases]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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The campaign is spearheaded by the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR). It embraces all three pillars of the EULAR community: People against rheumatism in Europe (PARE), health professionals and scientific societies.
 
The key message is a simple one: Don't Delay, Connect Today. Launched in 2017, this campaign continues to attract a growing audience in Europe in 2018. It emphasizes the need for prompt diagnosis and treatment for people with RMDs. This is because when intervention comes too late, serious damage may already have been done to patients?joints.

At UCB, we endorse this campaign and continue to play our part in improving care for people with RMDs, including rheumatoid arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis, and psoriatic arthritis. We want all people affected by these conditions to have timely access to evidence-based treatment. Not only has this the potential to prevent further damage, it can reduce the burden on individuals, their families and society.

On World Arthritis Day, and every day, UCB is committed to the goals of the rheumatology community. We aim to provide new innovative treatment options and to support people  with severe immunological diseases in living beyond the constraints of their disease.  

Find out more about World Arthritis Day

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<![CDATA[Working together for people with psoriasis]]> Working together for people with psoriasis]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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At UCB, we want to play our part in making a lasting difference in the lives of psoriasis (PSO) and psoriatic arthritis (PSA) patients. Our experience in healthcare has taught us that we can maximise our impact by working with others who share our goals.

That is why we are pleased to have joined the Partner Program of the International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA). IFPA is a pivotal international patient advocacy organization working exclusively in PSO and PSA.

The organization seeks to raise awareness about these diseases and improve living conditions for all psoriasis patients worldwide. They do this in several ways, including by improving access to early and accurate diagnosis for PSO patients, and by making PSO patient care a priority for national health systems and globally.

As a recognized partner with IFPA, UCB is now empowered to support this organization and to partner on mutually beneficial projects. This strategic partnership will allow UCB to bring real world value to psoriasis patients. We will do this by supporting international, regional and local patient associations to better understand the unique needs of psoriasis patients, particularly women, and to drive advocacy and patient support policies.

IFPA has made psoriasis a global health priority by supporting the adoption of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Resolution on Psoriasis in 2014, followed by the WHO Global Report on Psoriasis in 2016. These set a clear accountability framework for improving PSO patient care.

This year UCB attended the 5th World Psoriasis & Psoriatic Arthritis Conference 2018, organized by IFPA, and sponsored clinical psoriasis research, as well as research on the impact of psoriasis on patients, and how to optimize disease management.

We recognize the excellent work the Federation has done and look forward to lending our support to their cause.

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<![CDATA[ New online patent-search tool launched ]]>  New online patent-search tool launched ]]>Posted by Elise Melon, Intellectual Property Department.
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At UCB we believe that it is important that patent information is available and accessible to the public. This facilitates education and promotes the further advancement of knowledge.

UCB is pleased to be part of a new initiative that will make it easier to search for patent information and to engage with patent-holders.

Information about patents and, in many cases, patent applications is already public. However, the information is not easy to access or to use. For example, it can be challenging to directly link patents to marketed medicines. Some countries, including the US, have databases that help make the data more user-friendly, but many countries do not. In short, the data is not joined up.

IFPMA, the global trade association representing the research-based pharmaceutical industry ?including UCB ?has teamed up with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to develop a platform that will bring together patent data from participating companies for all countries around the world. WIPO is a specialised UN agency with a mandate in the field of intellectual property and is thus the ideal partner for this project.

Together, IFPMA and WIPO have launched the Patent Information Initiative for Medicines (Pat-INFORMED), a new online tool that will help procurement agencies better understand the global patent status of medicines. This is a unique resource where patent holders provide information about patents covering approved medicines through a free, open access database.

This new public database is now live, along with a platform where procurement agencies can make direct enquiries to companies. So far, Pat-INFORMED houses information from participating companies on over 14,000 individual patents, for 600 patent families and 169 pharmaceutical substances or active pharmaceutical ingredients for medicines in a number of therapeutic areas and those on the WHO Essential Medicines List. We expect this to grow over time.

This will bring greater transparency to the patent system, facilitate communication between research-based biopharma companies and procurement bodies, and ultimately support the procurement of life-improving medicines. Pat-INFORMED has the potential to reduce the time required to procure medicines for low-and-middle-income countries.

UCB is pleased to be among the 20 companies leading the way on this important initiative.

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<![CDATA[Striving for faster seizure diagnosis]]> Striving for faster seizure diagnosis]]>Posted by James Musick, Neurology Patient Technology, US.
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Reflecting our commitment to exploring how new technologies could support and improve patient experiences, we have recently invested in Ceribell, an exciting Silicon Valley based healthcare startup company founded out of Stanford University.

Although electroencephalogram (EEG) systems have been available for many years to support epilepsy diagnosis and non-convulsive seizure detection, these systems have traditionally been hospital based and required dedicated and specially trained personnel and expensive equipment. Considering the time needed to access and set up the equipment, and to interpret the results, patients can spend between 22 and 48 hours undergoing diagnosis. As a result, demand for EEG diagnosis tends to massively exceed the available supply. This can create significant waiting periods during which time sub-clinical seizures may remain undetected and untreated. These waiting periods can significantly impact the lives of patients and present increased morbidity and mortality risks.

Ceribell have developed a novel, innovative and disruptive clinical quality portable EEG system which allows for instant epilepsy diagnosis and non-convulsive seizure detection in a hospital setting. The new system consists of a disposable headband requiring a 3-minute setup, a portable pocket size EEG recording device and proprietary method of sonification of seizure EEG recordings which allows for seizure detection with an impressive success rate.

We are optimistic that Ceribell’s portable EEG could allow faster epilepsy diagnosis and non-convulsive seizure detection, and that this could provide significant patient value by improving diagnosis rates.  Better diagnosis has the potential to deliver better clinical outcomes and significant cost reductions for patients, payors and healthcare organizations.

We’re very excited to be collaborating with Ceribell, and we look forward to sharing our knowledge about epilepsy management and patient experiences and to learning more about the seizure diagnostic journey.

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<![CDATA[Non-communicable diseases: translating words into action ]]> Non-communicable diseases: translating words into action ]]>Posted by John-Kenneth Billingsley, External Engagement.
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We are proud of the difference we make in patients?lives but we know that we can amplify our impact further through collaborations. That is why we are working with more than 20 biopharma companies to tackle the burden of NCDs in low and middle-income countries.

As part of Access Accelerated, UCB and our partners aim to co-create scalable and sustainable solutions to improve people’s health. A high-level meeting in New York this week will lay the groundwork for future cooperation on this vital issue.

Access Accelerated has already recorded significant progress in its mission to improve care for people with NCDs. For example, the organisation is a trusted partner in Kenya where it works with the Ministry of Health and the full range of stakeholders to address NCDs.

By combining our expertise and committing to a shared goal of better prevention, treatment and care, Access Accelerated has triggered the World Bank to scale up its funding and prioritisation of NCDs. Together, we are ushering in a new era of transparency and data collection on industry-led programs. This will allow us to better measure our impact in low and middle-income countries.

Access Accelerated has set out a bold vision for global health: a future where no one dies prematurely from treatable, preventable NCDs.

Delivering on the Access Accelerated vision
To coincide with the third UN High-level meeting on NCDs (UN HLM) in New York, Access Accelerated, coordinated by IFPMA, hosted an event that reflects on the work done to date and looks ahead to delivering on the Access Accelerated vision.

The event brings together senior stakeholders to explore how to translate commitments into actions. Following a keynote speech by Dr Sania Nishtar, CEO Heartfile, Co-Chair, WHO High-Level Commission on NCDs, two panel will discuss "Translating Global Commitments into Local Contexts and Collaboration for Sustainable Action" on NCDs with a special focus on Kenya.

We expect the New York meeting to further advance the work of Access Accelerated in highlighting the need to address NCDs and the practical steps health stakeholders can take to deliver for people living with ill-health.

UCB is proud to be an active participant in this major initiative. We are committed to playing our part in delivering on the bold vision of global health advocated by Access Accelerated.

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<![CDATA[UCB named among most diverse and inclusive companies]]> UCB named among most diverse and inclusive companies]]>Posted by Tina Ilsted Terkelsen, Patient Value Function Talent & Company Reputation.
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As a global company bringing medicines to patients around the world, we strive to ensure that our workforce reflects the wider community. At UCB, we inspire a culture of inclusion by embracing diverse talents, motivating our people, and leveraging diversity of thought and experience to create value for patients.

We have been working hard to make progress in these areas for several years and have seen steady improvement. It is always heartening when our efforts are recognised by an authoritative external organisation.

Today, we are pleased to see UCB ranked in the top 25 companies in the 2018 Diversity & Inclusion Index.

The Index, compiled by Thomson Reuters, ranks over 7,000 publicly listed companies to identify the top 100 companies with the most diverse and inclusive workplaces. UCB was named joint 12th on a list of companies from across multiple industries.

The list is compiled based on 24 separate metrics under four pillars: diversity, inclusion, people development, and news & controversies. Thomson Reuters assess companies based on gender diversity and cultural diversity, work-life balance, training and employee support, and media coverage of issues relating to diversity and working conditions.

The Index helps to promote these values and inspires us to continue our efforts to make UCB a great place to work ?for everyone.

Find out more about careers at UCB

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<![CDATA[New approach accelerates drug discovery ]]> New approach accelerates drug discovery ]]>Posted by Rafal Kaminski, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.



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As proof-of-concept, the investigators applied their approach to epilepsy resulting in the discovery of a new drug target for epilepsy that was experimentally confirmed in pre-clinical models.

The discovery and validation of this potential new anti-epileptic drug took less than two years ?much faster than traditional approaches to medical research.

It has the potential to transform medicine and improve lives by dramatically speeding up the identification of new drug targets across the spectrum of human disease.

The team of scientists published their findings in Nature Communications, an international peer-reviewed publication.

This research, funded by UCB, is an example of a successful international collaboration between academia and industry. It illustrates our commitment to partnership and to bringing together leading scientists to work together a common goal ?improving the lives of patients.

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<![CDATA[Leading change in epilepsy care ]]> Leading change in epilepsy care ]]>Posted by Cédric Laloyaux, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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Epilepsy is one of the most common serious neurological conditions in the world. Around 65 million people have epilepsy worldwide. Disease management has improved over several decades but there is still a lot of work to do.

While about half of those diagnosed with epilepsy become seizure free with their first anti-epileptic drug, one third of people with epilepsy live with uncontrolled seizures because none of the available treatments works for them.

At UCB, we are committed to leading the way to better care for people with epilepsy. Our scientists are dedicated to expanding the treatment options for people with epilepsy, working to identify new therapies that can quickly control seizures.

As an industry leader in the field, UCB is delighted to join experts in Vienna this week (26-30 August) to discuss the latest thinking in epilepsy at the 13th European Congress on Epileptology.

This biennial meeting, which is a collaboration of the International Bureau for Epilepsy (IBE) and the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE), is a unique opportunity for face-to-face interaction with the finest minds in the field. It offers insights into the latest research and allows us to update the community on data from our epilepsy research projects.

One of our data submissions has been selected for an oral presentation, reinforcing our position on the cutting edge of epileptology. We will share new results that illustrate how our efforts, in collaboration with Yale University, can translate into new treatment options for people living with the disease.

We will continue to partner with leading researchers in pursuit of our shared goal: improving epilepsy care for the millions of individuals and families affected.


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<![CDATA[Making fragility fractures a public health priority]]> Making fragility fractures a public health priority]]>Posted by Anja-Lucia Hillestrom, Patient Value Unit - Bone.
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UCB is working with scientists, health professionals, patients and policymakers to highlight the value of preventing fragility fractures. At a recent political event in Almedalen, Sweden, we teamed up with the Swedish Osteoporosis Patient Association to call for political action on integrated care for people having experienced a fragility fracture.

The event has helped put osteoporosis and the impact of fragility fractures on the agenda in Sweden by highlighting the disease burden. Half a million Swedes are affected by osteoporosis and about 70,000 osteoporosis-related fractures occur each year. These fractures lead to 450,000 hospital days per year - only stroke causes more hospital days. We had a positive message: structured post fracture care models (in Sweden also known as ‘fracture chains? can support diagnosis, treatment and care of people living with osteoporosis.

The Osteoporosis Patient Association presented a new report, jointly developed with UCB, on osteoporosis and post fracture care. It revealed that:
  • Just 12% of patients are treated despite the clear 30%national target on management and prevention of fragility fractures
  • Treatment levels across regions is linked to the level of ‘fracture chain?implementation; suggesting that ‘fracture chains?are effective at facilitating diagnosis and treatment. Fracture chains are already making an impact in some regions but are not yet available to all Swedish patients. By sharing good practice with others in Sweden ?and beyond ?experts and patients hope to learn from one another and raise standards for all.
UCB’s support for this report, and our participation in the event, illustrates our commitment to improving outcomes for patients affected by severe diseases. As ever, we do this by engaging with a broad range of stakeholders and working to turn the best of medical science into solutions that patients need.

We will continue to collaborate with stakeholders, including others in industry who share our goals, to deliver value for the health system and for citizens.

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<![CDATA[Osteoporosis Insights: Fractures have slammed me into a medical wall at 59]]> Osteoporosis Insights: Fractures have slammed me into a medical wall at 59]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation .
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Osteoporosis is a condition that weakens bones over time, making them thinner and more likely to break.  For people with the condition, a small bump or fall can lead to a broken bone,  and for many, this creates not only a physical impact, but makes waves emotionally too.

To further understand, we spoke to our Experts by Experience panel; a group of patients having sustained fractures due to osteoporosis about what it’s like living in fear of breaking another bone.

“Every day [I live in fear]. I make sure I wear the right shoes, I watch the curbs, I take elevators when available, I have throw rugs secured, and my house is well lit. I do have a flashlight near the bed. I don't want to fall, so I try to be careful.?br>
Another member described feeling “slammed into a medical wall?at the age of just 59: “Three fractures in two years is concerning. Something I had never thought would happen with me. I was in good health, great physical shape, had spent my life exercising and eating well. I will forever continue to hold on to the very small glimmer of hope I so tightly grasp in my hand.?br>
If you or a relative have suffered a fracture over the age of 50 and are in fear of fracturing another bone, speak to your doctor or local patient support group for help and advice on living with and managing the condition.

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<![CDATA[Half-time analysis: UCB outlook for 2018 confirmed]]> Half-time analysis: UCB outlook for 2018 confirmed]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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The key point from our latest financial report is that UCB continues its growth path. Revenue, sales and underlying profitability have all increased in the first six months of 2018. This is driven by the continued growth of our core products.

Due to the phasing of expenses, operating costs are lower for the first half of the year ?marketing and sales expenses are 5% lower, and general and administrative expenses are also 5% lower. This provides scope for investing in future drivers of growth while maintaining our overall forecasts for the year. Research and development (R&D) spending was 5% higher in the first half of the year and we plan to accelerate our investment in R&D in the remaining months of 2018 and beyond. All this means that the financial outlook for the full year is confirmed.

So, what do we foresee in 2018? 
We expect continued growth of UCB’s core products, with revenue expected to reach approximately ?.5 - ?.6 billion. Recurring Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization charges (rEBITDA) will be in the range of ?.3 - ?.4 billion. Core earnings per share are expected in the range of ?4.30 ??.70 based on an average of 188 million shares outstanding.

For us, and for our investors and partners, UCB’s capacity to set a growth path ?and to stick to it ?is reassuring. Our core products are, as anticipated, delivering strong sales figures. At the same time, we are managing our expenses well and making investments that will ensure that the company is set for sustainable, competitive growth.

Now, it’s time for a short half-time break. We look forward to returning soon for a busy second half of 2018.

As ever, if you have a comment or question on our financial results, please let me know. I would be delighted <a href="mailto:Antje.Witte@ucb.com" class="" target="_self">to hear from you</a>. I wish you a great continuation of the summer.

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<![CDATA[UCB seals manufacturing deal with Samsung ]]> UCB seals manufacturing deal with Samsung ]]>Posted by Scott Russell, Partnerships and Alliances.
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Producing biological medicines for a global market requires diverse sources of supply. That is why UCB has signed a manufacturing agreement with Samsung BioLogics.

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From left to right: Dr Tae Han Kim, President and CEO, Samsung BioLogics and Cleo Ricci, Head of Global Technical Operations, UCB

The new deal covers the development and commercial manufacturing of an investigational product currently being developed for psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis.

UCB was represented at the signing ceremony in Seoul, South Korea, by Cleo Ricci, Head of Technical and Supply Operations, and Scott Russell, TSO Head Partnerships and Alliances.

The investigational medicine is currently produced at UCB’s bioplant in Belgium. Under the arrangement with Samsung BioLogics, the drug will also be produced in Samsung’s Plant No. 2 in the city of Incheon, South Korea.

The first two engineered batches of the product have been run at the Incheon plant and the focus will now move to process validation.

Samsung BioLogics is a global full-service provider of contract process development and cGMP manufacturing to the biopharmaceutical industry. Their facilities are custom designed for monoclonal and recombinant production.

The deal delivers the manufacturing diversity required to manufacture and supply this new product for patients around the world. We look forward to working with our new partners at Samsung to tackle unmet patient need.

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<![CDATA[UCB Innovator Joins PhRMA as Scholar at Aspen Ideas Festival]]> UCB Innovator Joins PhRMA as Scholar at Aspen Ideas Festival]]>Posted by Helen Tarleton, U.S. Corporate Communications.
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As part of a roundtable discussion sponsored by PhRMA, “From the Front Lines: Meet the Scientists Driving the New Era of Medicine,?the scholars covered a range of topics on the future of healthcare including Alzheimer’s, vaccine development, genetic markers for disease, and outcomes-based pricing.

Eddy represented UCB’s work to harness the power of big data and computational science and couple it with our established clinical expertise in epilepsy in an effort to find ways to identify the right solution for patients faster. In describing UCB’s approach to focusing on what patients value, he said: “Patients inspire us to understand how ones and zeros affect clinical outcomes and, more importantly, their lives.?Eddy also discussed his career path in biopharma from investment banking to developing patient-focused solutions.

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Edward Han-Burgess

Spotlight Health is the opening segment of the annual Aspen Ideas Festival. The three-day health conference featured an exceptional mix of inspiring and provocative experts who dove into topics of medicine and health. Some 125 presenters, 80 sessions, and 1,500 attendees comprised the annual health conference.

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<![CDATA[Celebrating 10 years of innovating together ]]> Celebrating 10 years of innovating together ]]>Posted by Katharina Klapper, Public-Private Partnerships Europe .
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Launched in 2008 with the support of the EU and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA), the IMI has initiated 100 projects so far that take a collaborative, open innovation approach to some of the biggest challenges in medical research and drug development today.

Together, IMI participants have developed new targets, tools and pathways that will accelerate the development of medicines and vaccines; enhanced the speed with which basic science is translated into clinical applications; developed the regulatory environment to support personalised medicine; and helped to make patient engagement a mainstream feature of drug development right across the value chain.

Our leaders have occupied key strategic roles on the IMI Governance while our scientists have worked with broad networks of experts from industry and academia, regulators, as well as with patients themselves, to advance medical knowledge. These include tackling the challenge of Alzheimer’s disease, rethinking how diseases are classified, and equipping patients with the skills needed to play a central role in how medicines are developed and regulated.

The IMI’s first decade was celebrated at an event in Brussels on 27 June 2018 with over 400 participants highlighting how IMI project results translated into concrete benefits for European citizens.

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Among the speakers and panellists were Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, Jean-Eric Paquet, Director General, DG Research and Innovation, European Commission and Jean-Christophe Tellier, CEO of UCB, incoming Chairman of the IMI Governing Board and Vice President of EFPIA as well as Dhaval Patel, CSO of UCB.

It was clear that much of the value of the IMI comes from the cultural shift it has driven in terms of how a diverse group of stakeholders, aiming to address common healthcare issues, collaborate together. Today collaboration is no longer a choice, it is a must.

As it marks its 10th anniversary, we are pleased to be part of this ground-breaking initiative and look forward to continued participation as IMI continue to deliver value for patients and society. The next occasion to celebrate is the IMI scientific symposium in October.


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<![CDATA[Osteoporosis Insights - "I stay away from crowded venues"]]> Osteoporosis Insights - "I stay away from crowded venues"]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Osteoporosis is a condition that weakens bones over time, making them more likely to break. One member of our Experts by Experience panel ?a group of patients with the condition ?spoke about the way his osteoporosis has isolated him socially:
  • “I still don’t go to a crowded venue, because if somebody bumps me, I fracture ribs. I wish I could wear a badge that said “I have osteoporosis? because I’m in so much pain, and to keep people away.?/li>
  • “It makes you fearful of everyday activities you have enjoyed for decades.?/li>
Another member explained how his condition has made him feel like “an old man in a young body.?/div>
  • “My personality has changed completely. Nearly 16 years since my first fracture and I still live in fear of the next time. It’s also affected other things like my breathing and my capacity to eat meals without discomfort.?/li>
If you have osteoporosis or have a loved one with the condition, and are worried about the impact it is having on your life ?remember you are not alone. Speak to your doctor or reach out to a patient support group about how you can better manage your osteoporosis.

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<![CDATA[Epilepsy ‘People’s Meeting? Danish colleagues partner with epilepsy community to focus on improving diagnosis, management and treatment of epilepsy at largest political event in Denmark]]> Epilepsy ‘People’s Meeting? Danish colleagues partner with epilepsy community to focus on improving diagnosis, management and treatment of epilepsy at largest political event in Denmark]]>Posted by Ani Parachikova, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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UCB shares this ambition, and we are united in our commitment to supporting the epilepsy community. With this in mind, colleagues in Denmark recently played a pivotal role in organizing the first Danish People’s Meeting to include epilepsy as an area of focus.

People’s Meeting’s provide a venue for Danish politicians to debate political issues with a variety of stakeholders. They are the largest annual political event in Denmark and are attended by 110,000 guests comprising a varied audience including decision makers, politicians, and members of the public.

The epilepsy section of the People’s Meeting included prominent senior representatives from Danish epilepsy patient and professional associations, a national epilepsy Center of Excellence lead as well as the Chairman of the Danish Health Committee. Henrik Klitgaard, Vice President and Fellow, UCB New Medicines, and expert in innovation in epilepsy, represented UCB at this prestigious event. Topics covered included holistic perspectives about living with epilepsy from patients, family members and medical experts.

Multiple participants shared their experiences and impressions of epilepsy including their thoughts and feedback on the “In my shoes?virtual reality simulation, an initiative co-created by UCB, which provides a first-person perspective about the thoughts, emotions and sensations which might be experienced by someone surrounding a seizure.

Participants debated unmet needs in diagnostics and treatment of epilepsy, and discussed some of the socioeconomic factors which affect management and day to day epilepsy experiences.

Henrik Klitgaard also provided his unique perspective on potential future developments for epilepsy management, including the convergence of science and technology and how this could be instrumental in developing exciting new treatment options which could provide additional value to patients.

In supporting the epilepsy community to debate, discuss and engage about how best to support and improve experiences for people with epilepsy, colleagues in Denmark exemplify our patient value strategy and our commitment to adding value to and improving the lives of patients.

Building on the energy and success of this event, numerous follow up activities are planned, helping to ensure we maintain the momentum already generated to continue to make a positive difference for people with epilepsy.

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<![CDATA[Succeeding together: UCB joins patients and experts to improve the lives of people with epilepsy ]]> Succeeding together: UCB joins patients and experts to improve the lives of people with epilepsy ]]>Posted by Jesus Sobrino, UCB Iberia.
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The Epilepsy in Action initiative was launched in response to a World Health Assembly resolution in 2015 which encouraged countries to prioritise epilepsy at a national level. The resolution calls for stronger commitment to raising awareness, eliminating stigma, expanding research capability and enhancing access to care.

These goals fit with our desire to add value for patients and their families by improving their quality of life in a holistic way. The Epilepsy in Action project brings UCB Iberia together with the Spanish Society of Epilepsy (SEEP), the Spanish Society of Pediatric Neurology (SENEP), the Epilepsy Group of the Spanish Society of Neurology (SEN), the Spanish Federation of Epilepsy Patients (FEDE), the Foundation of the Brain and the consultancy EY. The Spanish Society of Health Executives (SEDISA) and the Spanish Society of Hospital Pharmacy (SEFH) also support the initiative, further adding to the diversity and effectiveness of the coalition.

Epilepsy in Action has analysed the lived reality of epilepsy for people in Spain, exploring the challenges they face and how we can work together to improve their situation. We have produced a detailed report with 22 specific commitments designed to improve epilepsy care, increase the efficiency of the healthcare system, reduce the costs associated with the condition, and improve quality of life. These commitments include actions aimed at health professionals, adult patients, children and society in general.

The report’s recommendations feature calls for greater specialisation in the management of the disease, a larger network of epilepsy units, access to diagnosis and innovative medicines, and the creation of a patient record.

The report was presented on National Epilepsy Day at the Embassy of Belgium in Madrid at an event attended by diplomats, policymakers, health professionals, patient representatives and journalists along with members of the UCB Iberia team.  The launch received strong media coverage, reaching almost 5,000,000 readers through 34 published articles.

We are convinced that this is a great step towards in creating value for patients living with epilepsy in Spain. At UCB Iberia we will continue to work with other stakeholders to implement all the actions highlighted in the Epilepsy in Action report. Through the sustained effort of our broad coalition, we believe we can achieve our shared goal of helping people with epilepsy achieve their full potential.

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<![CDATA[UCB Ventures makes its first direct investment]]> UCB Ventures makes its first direct investment]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications and Company Reputation.
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Brussels, Belgium, 13 June 2018. ?Today, UCB Ventures announces its first direct investment in the oversubscribed $15.7 million Series A Financing Round for StrideBio, Inc., a US-based biotechnology company developing novel adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors for in vivo gene therapies of rare diseases. 

The financing was led by Hatteras Venture Partners, and in addition to UCB Ventures, co-investors include Takeda Ventures, Inc. and Alexandria Venture Investments, LLC. Erica Whittaker, PhD, Vice President, Head of UCB Ventures, and Jayson Punwani, PhD, Partner, Takeda Ventures, Inc. have joined StrideBio’s Board of Directors.

Read more on our UCB Ventures website
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<![CDATA[Osteoporosis Insights - "I am constantly in a state of fear"]]> Osteoporosis Insights - "I am constantly in a state of fear"]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Osteoporosis is a disease that reduces bone density and increases the risk of suffering a fracture. The loss of bone takes place gradually and without symptoms until a minor accident, such as a fall, leads to a broken bone. For the 200 million people worldwide who live with osteoporosis, the disease can mean living in fear that normal everyday activities may cause a broken bone.

To better understand how this feels, our Experts by Experience panel, a group of patients with osteoporosis who have suffer fragility fractures, explained to us why the condition has left them feeling afraid.
  • “It makes you fearful of everyday activities you have performed for decades, suddenly it all changes.?A panel member explained. “Carrying groceries, opening jars, walking, reaching, you name it. Mundane issues evolve into monsters.?/li>
  • “I still don’t go to a crowded venue, because if somebody bumps me, I fracture ribs?said a panel member highlighting a common fear experienced by patients.
Another panel member explained that other medical conditions can magnify the consequences of osteoporosis and add to the sensation of being afraid to suffer a fracture.
  • “I think my condition is becoming quite serious because of my falling due to a failed hip replacement, different leg lengths, peripheral neuropathy causing numbness and pain in my feet, my widespread osteoarthritis and because of an eye stroke, my depth perception is affected and I misjudge things. I am always in fear of breaking major bones?
For patients who are concerned and scared about living with osteoporosis and their fracture risk, speaking to a doctor or patient group will provide practical tips, help and advice to better manage the condition.

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<![CDATA[UCB proud to collect Wallonia Export Award]]> UCB proud to collect Wallonia Export Award]]>Posted by Didier Malherbe, Public Affairs.
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The 16th Wallonia Export Awards ceremony was attended by more than 800 people and took place on 31 May. We were delighted to accept this prestigious prize from the Wallonia Export-Investment Agency which acknowledges our contribution to the economy in Wallonia and Belgium.

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The awards are designed to recognise the success of Belgian/Walloon companies that have made an impact on foreign markets. Not only do strong exports positively affect the companies in question, it also boosts the international image of the region as an industrial and cultural exporter.

UCB’s success at the awards is recognition of the positive transformation of our site in Braine-l’Alleud over the past 10 years. Today, more than 1,600 UCB employees work in Braine-l’Alleud and contribute to the R&D, production and packaging activities of the company.

UCB exports more than 99% of the medicines produced at the site, making us an outstanding example of an innovative export-based company. To have this celebrated by the Wallonia Export-Investment Agency was very special.

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<![CDATA[Supporting digital innovation in partnership with top coding school]]> Supporting digital innovation in partnership with top coding school]]>Posted by Herman De Prins, Global IT.
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School 19 is entirely free ?there are no fees, no teachers and no diplomas ?and is accessible to 18-30-year-olds. This peer-to-peer learning approach, focused on computer programming along with emerging fields such as artificial intelligence, fosters a collaborative and inclusive environment where students can unleash their creativity.

The school takes inspiration from School 42, one of the world’s best coding schools which has centers in Paris and Silicon Valley. School 42 has already shown the value of the ‘free?approach to learning computer skills and we are delighted to see this model coming to Belgium.

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From the left to the right: Founders of S19, Ian Gallienne and John-Alexander Bogaerts, and S42 founder Xavier Niel

Next generation of talent
Why, you may ask, is UCB investing in a free coding school? As an innovative medicines company dedicated to delivering value to patients, we invest approximately 25% of our revenues in R&D.

In the modern world, investing in digital skills is central to our work. Our Global IT Department plays a vital role in our drug discovery projects and helps us to personalize our interaction with patients, their carers and other stakeholders.

We are constantly searching for the right talent. Working with School 19, which is located not far from our sites in Anderlecht and Braine, connects us with some of Belgium’s brightest young minds. The school’s commitment to meritocracy also aligns with our goal of achieving greater workplace diversity. Top talent can come from all socio-economic backgrounds. We hope School 19 can offer students an opportunity to reach their full potential.

As part of this new three-year collaboration, our Global IT Department will engage School 19’s leadership and its students to foster interest in, and understanding of, UCB’s dynamic, patient-centric biotech landscape.

We hope that new collaborative opportunities will emerge that open doors for School 19 students and lead us to new ways of driving patient value together. The future success of this up-and-coming pool of talent fits UCB’s patient value strategy and we are excited to begin on our journey with them.

UCB strongly believes that supporting and investing in the potential of today’s youth, and tomorrow’s future leaders, is the best way to ensure that innovation remains a key component of our future.

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<![CDATA[Osteoporosis Insights: No-one takes my osteoporosis seriously]]> Osteoporosis Insights: No-one takes my osteoporosis seriously]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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The nature of the condition causes bones to weaken, making them fragile and more likely to break (a fragility fracture) meaning that a person’s life can be altered without warning. Many people find that they can no longer work, be physically active or interact with family in the same way and thus withdraw themselves from the things they previously enjoyed.

We asked a group of individuals living with osteoporosis and having experienced fragility fractures if they had felt feelings of isolation following their diagnosis, here’s what we heard:
  • “My first fracture was very traumatic,?said a gentleman in his 50s. “In addition to the pain, I couldn’t get answers as to why it had happened. I was forced to retire from a job I loved, my whole life changed in a heartbeat. I didn’t cope very well with all this change. I became withdrawn and lonely, even amongst friends and family.?/li>
Others lamented the misperceptions held by their families or loved ones about osteoporosis.
  • “Because when I fell [and fractured] I was all alone, I felt no one took it seriously: ‘Oh only osteoporosis? And I felt really isolated, even with my family, because they said “that’s just osteoporosis, why are you acting like that? It’s a feeling of isolation most of all,?said a lady in her 60s.
Another lady explained that limiting herself physically to avoid a fracture meant that she could no longer play with her grandchildren, which had an effect on her whole family.

For patients who feel isolated or are concerned about the emotional impact of osteoporosis, remember that you are not alone. Speaking to a health professional can help those affected to manage the condition, as can speaking to a peer or support group for advice.

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<![CDATA[Partnership with Science 37: helping UCB to improve patient experience]]> Partnership with Science 37: helping UCB to improve patient experience]]>Posted by Tero Laulajainen, UCB Biosciences, Global Clinical Science and Operations.
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UCB’s new collaboration with Science 37 will allow us to conduct studies in a radically new way. Rather than conducting studies at a hospital, which may not be conveniently located but where patients are invited to attend for treatment and analysis, the Science 37 approach ‘decentralizes?clinical research by bringing the studies to the patient.

Using a combination of telemedicine technology, a network of clinicians and scientists work with patients directly in the comfort of their homes. This direct connection online we believe will create greater retention of patients, increased diversity across trials, and significantly faster recruitment.

Patients share study data through a safe cloud-based mobile research platform known as NORA ?the Network Oriented Research Assistant. The system adheres to the highest industry quality and regulatory standards.

Unlike other mobile health technology companies, Science 37’s Metasite?or ‘site-less?model helps researchers engage directly with patients through every stage of study participation.

This innovative approach has already been used in a number of clinical areas, including dermatology and rare diseases. Now, our new collaboration will apply this model to areas where UCB has considerable expertise, such as neurology and immunology.

UCB’s patient value strategy aims to deliver unique outcomes and the best patient experience to as many lives as possible. Science 37’s decentralized clinical trial approach has fundamentally changed the way patients experience clinical studies.

With this collaboration, we see an opportunity to not only provide a better patient experience, but also enhance our data points to accelerate the development of medicines.

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<![CDATA[World Ankylosing Spondylitis Day: We watch your back]]> World Ankylosing Spondylitis Day: We watch your back]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation .
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Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects parts of the spine including the bones, muscles and ligaments. World AS day is sponsored by the Ankylosing Spondylitis International Federation (ASIF).

As part of this annual event, patients, their families and members of the public are invited to walk during the month of May. This ‘Walk your AS off?initiative encourages physical activity and mobility while presenting opportunities to highlight the ways in which AS affects patients?lives.

UCB is sponsoring ASIF’s Selfie Challenge which aims to inspire 10,000 people around the globe to post on Instagram in May and June 2018. Last year 1,000 people took part so this year we are hoping to expand the impact of the campaign significantly.

To take the Selfie Challenge, post a picture of yourself or your friends and family participating in Walk Your AS Off and share it on Instagram, tagging @walkASoneworldwide. Participants can also include information about their own lives and the challenges they face.

We watch your back
Ankylosing Spondylitis is a subgroup of axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA), a spectrum of disease which includes non-radiographic axSpA (nr-axSpA) and AS. In nr-axSpA, inflammation in the joints that connect the pelvis and spine, known as sacroiliac joints, does not show up on x-ray; in AS the inflammation is detectable by X-ray. Over time, some nr-axSpA patients can progress to AS. The main symptoms are back pain and fatigue.

Onset of disease typically happens before age 45 and often strikes people in their 20s. Although there is no cure, the disease can be effectively managed by rheumatologists. Unfortunately, due to a lack of awareness, the disease is under-diagnosed, especially in women. Accurate diagnoses can be delayed up to 14 years, contributing to poorer long-term outcomes and provoking a decline in quality of life.

Throughout this month, UCB is engaging with the axSpA patient population to remind them of our ongoing support and continuing work to address significant unmet needs. Under the slogan, “In May, we watch your back!?we are playing our part to raise awareness for people living with these inflammatory conditions.

Find out more about axSpA and related diseases on our webpage dedicated to the disease.

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<![CDATA[Three months interim report: what are the highlights?]]> Three months interim report: what are the highlights?]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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First, let’s look at the financial headlines in our latest report. UCB is tracking well towards its full year financial outlook with revenues of ?1.07 billion in the first three months of 2018. Foreign exchange rates cause headwind in 2018, as expected. This keeps us on course for annual revenue of between ?4.5 - 4.6 billion.

Our five main products recorded net sales of ?839 million ?driven by a continuous growth at constant currency exchange rates. This is very important for all of us interested in UCB’s present and future. One of our key immunology products, for example, is now available to women with chronic inflammatory disease throughout the pregnancy journey.

R&D update
Also significant is the R&D update we feature in every report. This is a window on our next generation of potential medicines currently in clinical development. For example, in February, a phase 2b study was initiated to test a potential new compound for drug-resistant epilepsy patients. First results are expected in 2020.

In March, a new antibody-based treatment for a currently incurable group of neurodegenerative diseases entered the first phase of clinical studies. There is huge unmet need in this area, making it one to watch for patients, health professionals, investors and analysts.

In the second half of this year, I look forward to seeing results from phase 2b clinical studies of a new lupus compound, and two phase 2a studies for a compound tested in patients with immune thrombocytopenia or myasthenia gravis.

Collaborations
We are pleased to have acquired Element Genomics in the U.S. to strengthen our genomics and epigenomics research platform to identify novel drug targets. We are also pleased to have the agreement to expand our epilepsy portfolio with a nasal spray. This nasally administered investigational formulation is intended as a rescue treatment of acute repetitive seizures in patients with epilepsy. It has completed Phase 3 clinical development and is ready to be filed as a New Drug Application in the U.S. in the course of 2018.

Taken together, these developments make it clear that UCB is investing in its future ?both internally and externally - and following through on our commitment to deliver value to patients and other stakeholders including shareholders.

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<![CDATA[Sharing research & supporting development of future neurology leaders at AAN 2018]]> Sharing research & supporting development of future neurology leaders at AAN 2018]]>Posted by Mike Davis, U.S. Neurology Patient Value Unit .
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Celebrating 70 years at the cutting edge of science and medicine, the AAN meeting is one of the most important and influential neurology gatherings in the world. It provides the global neurology community an opportunity to engage with and discuss exciting and cutting-edge science and research.

The meeting is also an ideal venue for organisations like UCB to engage with the experts from around the world ?scientists, clinicians, healthcare providers and advocacy partners - and to discuss with them with the very latest research and thinking about our therapies and management approaches for diseases such as epilepsy, Parkinson's and restless legs syndrome (RLS).

As well as sharing our latest scientific research, this year, we are very proud to be supporting a number of AAN training and leadership initiatives.

UCB is pleased to sponsor the AAN Palatucci Advocacy Leadership Forum.  This program builds neurologists?capacity to advocate for the interests of their patients at the National and State levels.  By completing this program neurologists are equipped to use media and public affairs strategies on real-time public policy issues that impact patients and providers.

The AAN Diversity Leadership immersion program identifies, orients and cultivates underrepresented minorities.   During an interactive 9-month program, participants receive mentoring and executive coaching to improve their leadership skills, allowing them to connect and project the AAN’s vision across the entire neurology community. Ultimately, they will play an integral role in  realizing and delivering the academy’s diversification strategy.

The Women In Neurology programs develop women’s leaderships skills and promotes the value of women’s inclusion in key leadership positions to combat bias to support women in taking on leadership roles within the AAN.

Additionally, UCB continues to learn more about how to address patient needs throughout the healthcare journey. In support of this, UCB is presenting data on two exciting areas.  First, in collaboration with multiple partners (STATinMED, New York City College of Technology, Emory University School of Medicine, University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy), UCB analyzed Medicaid formulary restrictions and the impact on health outcomes and cost.  The results are important information for working with states to improve and expand access to anti-seizure medications for patients with epilepsy. Second, in collaboration with Partners Health in Boston, Massachusetts, UCB looked at factors associated with epilepsy-related care costs.  The results are an important first step in understanding areas of healthcare that are better predictors of high cost, which will allow us to start developing specific education and collaboration projects to address these issues.

As passionate partners, UCB is extremely proud to be involved in these pioneering initiatives, and to be helping nurture a representative and inclusive neurology community.

Alongside the AAN, and all the delegates who will be gathering this week in Los Angeles, UCB is united in helping to improve management and patient experiences for people with neurological conditions.

In sharing our research, and in helping to grow and develop future neurology leaders, UCB continues its commitment to support patients to live their lives at their ideal.

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<![CDATA[Osteoporosis Insights: More than just broken bones]]> Osteoporosis Insights: More than just broken bones]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Osteoporosis is a condition that weakens bones over time, making them thinner and more likely to break. It occurs when bone mass decreases more quickly than the body can replace it, leading to a net loss of bone strength.

Osteoporosis causes more than 8.9 million fractures annually worldwide, equating to one fracture every 3 seconds.

But the impact of osteoporosis goes far beyond broken bones; the condition can have far-reaching effects on almost every aspect of a person’s life. We asked our Bone ‘Experts by Experience??a panel of people living with osteoporosis: ‘how serious do you think osteoporosis is as a health condition??Here’s what they had to say.

“The fractures are in some way a small part of osteoporosis ?it’s living with the after effects that is proving to be difficult. I have lost confidence, have problems with my mobility and I’m suffering with pains. My lung capacity has also been affected by the fractures, meaning I get breathless easily now.?br>
Living in fear of falling and breaking another bone is also a key theme among our Panel and for many people living with osteoporosis, often holding them back from doing the things they love; “My bones are brittle and riddled with holes. I used to work 10-12 hours daily and then work hours in my garden. Now, I am afraid to use a shovel or work the ground with a hand trowel, as the simply movement could be catastrophic. So much has changed in the last two years?I watch my older sisters continue their lives, immersed in a quality I no longer have?

Another panel member feels there’s a lack of awareness around the real consequences of osteoporosis; “It’s much more serious than healthcare professionals tell us. It’s something that most people are unaware of and it needs to be explained much sooner.?br>
Seeking information and having the right conversations with your health care professional can help with the management of your osteoporosis and associated conditions ?speak to your doctor if you are over 55 and have recently experienced a fracture, or are concerned in any way about your bone health.

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<![CDATA[UCB is proud to #UniteforParkinsons]]> UCB is proud to #UniteforParkinsons]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Neurology Patient Value Unit.
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EPDA and Parkinson’s UK.

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The programme aims to improve knowledge and awareness of Parkinson’s around the world and to grow an active global Parkinson’s community.

Building on the momentum created in 2017 (where people from 90 countries used the  #UniteForParkinsons hashtag to mark their social media presence!) this year, the Global Parkinson’s community are uniting to make an even bigger noise.

As active and committed members of the world PD community, UCB  is very proud to #Unitefor Parkinsons. We are encouraging colleagues to spread the word, share their stories and experiences and let people know why they feel it is important to #UniteforParkinsons.

UCB approaches the challenge of Parkinson’s holistically, focusing on people with Parkinson’s, their family, and the various healthcare professionals who support them. We believe it is important to unite the opinions of various stakeholders to ensure a well-rounded and considered perspective. We listen to patients, carers and healthcare professionals, and their feedback helps us to design and deliver patient centric improvements which can provide genuine value to people living with severe diseases.

Across our organization, we are energized by supporting and encouraging a bigger and more active community, focusing on the importance of raising awareness about Parkinson’s and the need for more collaborative research around the world.

Colleagues in our New Medicines group are actively involved in research and development. They are proud to be #UnitedforParkinsons with the aim of developing a medicine in the future with the potential to better support people with movement disorders.

We have written about the STEPTM Market Research UCB commissioned to help us understand the real lived experiences of people living with Parkinson’s disease. We are hopeful these insights could in some small way help to improve patient care for people with Parkinson’s, and the way that support is provided to them and their families.

We also conducted pioneering research designed to deepen our understanding of the behavioral drivers and subconscious influences which affect treatment decisions for people with Parkinson’s Disease (PwPD). Our DRIVETM Market Research showed that a greater emphasis on understanding the more complex physical, mental, societal and emotional aspects of PD could be beneficial.

Ultimately, we hope that by sharing our knowledge more broadly, it may be possible to improve patient outcomes by addressing what really matters most to them.

So, take a moment to lend your support by visiting the campaign’s website and telling the world why it is important to #UniteforParkinsons.

We believe that as a united movement disorders community, we can better realize our vision of identifying and addressing the unmet needs of people living with Parkinson's disease to enable them to live a more engaged life every day.

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<![CDATA["Epilepsy, so what?" ?a new campaign to normalise the disease among adolescents]]> "Epilepsy, so what?" ?a new campaign to normalise the disease among adolescents]]>Posted by Jesus Sobrino, UCB Iberia.
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Vivir Con Epilepsia) platform, aims to inform young people about the condition in a language they understand and through a channel that is familiar to them.

Entitled ‘Epilepsy, so what?? the campaign features a video of a well-known Spanish YouTuber named Kaos discussing epilepsy with a girl living with the condition. Together, they aim to address some of the myths about epilepsy and seizures, helping to reduce the stigma associated with the disease.



The video is already a hit: more than 100,000 people in Spain have viewed the video and 14,000 have liked it on YouTube.

The campaign also includes a contest for young people aged 13 to 24 years attending school or university. Participants can find out more about the disease before creating their own video to explain what they have learned or tell a story based on personal experience of epilepsy. A prize of ?,000 is on offer for the best video.

The ‘Epilepsy, so what??initiative builds on a school-based campaign designed for younger children ?aged 7-13 years old. ‘Knowing Epilepsy Makes us Equal?has been delivered to more than 100,000 students in classrooms around Spain.

Around half of all newly-diagnosed cases of epilepsy are among children or adolescents. Most can, with the right treatment, lead a totally normal life. By educating a new generation about epilepsy, UCB and FEDE hope to normalise the condition and the improve the lives of those affected.

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<![CDATA[Accelerating access to care: working together to improve global health]]> Accelerating access to care: working together to improve global health]]>Posted by Dirk Teuwen, Corporate Societal Responsibility.
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Non-communicable diseases (NCDs), such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases, respiratory disease, diabetes, mental health disorders and neurological conditions, are leading causes of death and disability worldwide.

Access Accelerated aims to turn the tide on a growing global health challenge. It brings together twenty-two leading pharmaceutical companies, in partnerships with the World Bank and the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC).

Participants in the Access Accelerated initiative met this week in Nairobi to discuss issues facing people with NCDs in Kenya and explore new opportunities for collaboration. Keynote speakers included representatives from the Kenya Ministry of Health and the World Bank, with break-out sessions led by the World Heart Foundation, the NCD Alliance and PATH (Program for Appropriate Technology in Health).

Access Accelerated member companies, such as UCB, displayed and shared information on NCD access initiatives in an interactive exhibition area.

At UCB, we are committed to helping people everywhere living with NCDs of the immunological and neurological systems, such as rheumatoid arthritis and epilepsy. That is why we have pledged our support to the Access Accelerated initiative which has the potential to improve the lives of millions of people in LMICs by innovation and collaboration.

A major burden
People affected by NCDs need access to prevention, treatment and quality care in a sustainable manner. NCDs account for the largest percentage of global morbidity and mortality ?70% of all deaths worldwide ?causing 40 million deaths annually. NCDs are a major burden in high-income countries and will be a major challenge as populations age. In low and middle-income countries (LMICs), NCDs are projected to become the leading cause of death by 2030.

Nearly 80 percent of NCD-related deaths occur in LMICs where patients face financial, regulatory and service delivery barriers. To achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target to reduce premature deaths from NCDs by one-third by 2030, action is needed.

As a multi-stakeholder project, Access Accelerated aims to catalyze, develop, measure and replicate sustainable programs in LMICs. It was created because we, as an industry, believe that the situation has reached a crisis point and that health structure strengthening and medicines can play a vital role in addressing it.

By building relationships, learning from one another, and working together to solve problems, we are confident to advance a holistic response to the global NCD crisis.

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<![CDATA[#GoBoldy: R&D is an investment in a new era of medicine]]> #GoBoldy: R&D is an investment in a new era of medicine]]>Posted by Allyson Funk, U.S. Corporate Communications.
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The discovery and development of new drugs is a lengthy and complicated process. Yet it is an essential part of what we do: our science has delivered for people with severe diseases in the fields of immunology and neurology ?but we know there is still a need for new treatments and cures. UCB continues to invest about a quarter of our revenue in R&D.

Meeting the challenges of modern medicine requires a bold, long-term commitment to science. That is why UCB is pleased to #GoBoldly and be a part of the campaign from the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA). This initiative continues to showcase our industry’s unsung scientific heroes who are driving advances in medicine.

Learn more about how companies like UCB are tenaciously working to deliver a new era of medicine on GoBoldly.com and Innovation.org.



Biopharmaceutical companies invest heavily in R&D. In the U.S. alone, the biopharma industry spends more than $70 billion per year on research ?more than any other industry. The sector accounts for 17% of all domestic R&D funded by U.S. businesses. This is far more than the software (13%), automotive (5%), and aerospace (4%) industries.

We are pleased to see leading companies in our industry come together to highlight the huge effort our scientists and researchers are making to bring a new generation of valuable treatments to people who need them.

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<![CDATA[New online tool helps patients and physicians find our clinical studies]]> New online tool helps patients and physicians find our clinical studies]]>Posted by Nathalie Vandenbruaene, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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In keeping with this desire to bring value and transparency to patients, we have launched a new section on our website dedicated to clinical studies. This allows patients and physicians to learn about current studies and to find out about patient enrollment possibilities.

All medicines must pass safety and efficacy tests if they are to be approved by regulators. Our clinical studies pages explain how clinical research works, who can take part in studies, and explains what study participants can expect if they choose to take part.

An easy-to-use tool allows users to search for relevant research projects which are currently enrolling. This improves access to studies while helping researchers to connect with people who might be suitable for a particular study. Information on our current studies will be updated on our website on a monthly basis.

Medical research is a collaborative effort to reach a mutually beneficial goal. We want to deliver new solutions to meet the needs of patients and hope this new section of our website can help us achieve this target together.

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<![CDATA[New report highlights UCB's commitment to sustainability ]]> New report highlights UCB]]>Posted by Dirk Teuwen, Corporate Societal Responsibility.
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Sustainability Report 2017 highlights our company’s efforts to be a responsible and ethical company ?improving the lives of people with severe diseases while practising environmental stewardship and supporting our employees.

In keeping with our goal of minimising our environmental impact, the report is available online only. This makes it widely accessible and allows us to publish it in three languages ?English, French and Dutch ?without using reams of paper or spilling a drop of ink. You can, of course, print a PDF version for your own use if you wish.

The Sustainability Report 2017 continues to apply Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Sustainability Indicators and also meets several of the requirements set out in new Belgian legislation. Since September 2017, companies like ours are required to report on non-financial CSR indicators including environmental issues; social and employee matters; human rights; anti-corruption and bribery; and diversity & inclusion.

The first four of these five CSR areas are detailed in the new Sustainability Report which details our policies, due diligence processes, outcomes and the risks, as well as, relevant key performance indicators (KPIs). The findings of these additional reporting requirements have been embedded in the introduction of respective chapters within the Sustainability report. Further information on diversity & inclusion will be found in the 2017 Annual Report.

UCB goes beyond our essential legal reporting requirements. In addition to complying with Belgian legislation and embracing the GRI G4 Sustainability Indicators, our company subscribes to various initiatives under the UN’s seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s).

The SDGs set a clear benchmark for progress toward a world in which every person will have the right to a healthy life, development, protection and participation. To this end, UCB has identified 9 SDGs and 26 areas of engagement with which we identify the most.
Find out more about our activities and initiatives in the areas of sustainable development, environmental stewardship, employee engagement and much more by reading the report for yourself. But remember ?think before you print!

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<![CDATA[Laying a foundation for future growth ]]> Laying a foundation for future growth ]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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At UCB, we take this approach when preparing our company for future growth. As our 2017 Full Year Report illustrates, the company performed well last year and we have also been working to ensure strong results in the years to come.

This is something I am emphasising this week when speaking with analysts and investors: yes, the 2017 results are great in their own right, but the bigger picture is how we use this to invest in UCB’s future to enable growth, sustainability and profitability.

The report shows positive growth momentum of UCB’s core products, driving top and bottom line growth. Underlying profitability (rEBITDA) increased by 33% to ?1.375 million ?thanks to solid revenue growth, efficient resource allocation and tight cost control. This means that we successfully reached our target of a 30% rEBITDA margin one year ahead of schedule.

For 2018, revenue is expected to reach ?4.5 - 4.6 billion, underlying profitability should be ?1.3 - 1.4 billion, and core earnings per share (EPS) of ?4.30 - 4.70 are expected.

The report also provides an update on our R&D pipeline, pointing to strong positive results for a number of new molecules and existing products ?and exciting new additions from “R?to “D?. UCB will invest in its early and late-stage innovative development pipeline, while selectively bringing in external opportunities to build new growth post 2021.

For more information on this or related matters, don’t hesitate to contact me and the IR team. As usual, we’re “hitting the road?now: see us at several occasions in London, Paris and Brussels during March. Looking forward to continuing the dialog with you!

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<![CDATA[What drives patients?treatment decisions in Parkinson's Disease?]]> What drives patients?treatment decisions in Parkinson]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Value Unit - Neurology .
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At UCB, we’re passionate about unlocking behavioural insights which could help people living with severe diseases. We believe one of the first steps in addressing an unmet need and in encouraging healthy behaviours is to work closely with those whose lives we want to improve.

That is why we initiated ‘DRIVE?a market research (“research? designed to deepen our understanding of the behavioral drivers and subconscious influences which influence treatment decisions for people with Parkinson’s Disease (PwPD).

In partnership with Final Mile Consulting, who describe themselves as BEHAVIOUR ARCHITECTS? UCB set out to expand our knowledge and better understand how cognitive neuroscience, behavioral economics, and design principles can explain and influence decision making in Parkinson’s Disease (PD).

This behavioral research, encompassing PwPD, their carers and Healthcare Professionals (HCPs) involved in treating patients with movement disorders, was initiated by the Free Motion Mission within UCB’s Neurology Patient Value Unit - a cross functional team focused on addressing the unmet needs of PwPD to enable them to have a more engaged life every day.

The research was prompted by a reality that up to 50% of PwPD stop taking medicines prescribed to them by their HCPs within 3 months of initiating treatment.

UCB hypothesized that, by understanding how a PwPD’s  subconscious influences their behavior, it might be possible to improve patient experiences, treatment expectations and, ultimately quality of life.

Initial findings from DRIVE?suggest that, for many patients, a diagnosis of PD is associated with a belief of ‘certain loss? This perception creates a context of uncertainty with regards to the outcome of any treatment, which causes them to change treatments prematurely, or without weighing the benefits of a medication against any side-effects they might be experiencing.

Additionally, the research suggests that an openness to trying new treatments and an evolving treatment journey, with regular decision making roles between patients and their HCP, could support better treatment outcomes. The full DRIVE?report can be downloaded here.

Building on these insights, UCB believes more can be done to help PwPD to maximize the benefits of the treatments available to each of them, and that this would represent significant added value for patients.

UCB has a strong record in gathering insights from  PwPD through innovative research. Results from the DRIVE?research will add to earlier insights gained through the STEP?market research.

STEP?aimed to help the PD community better understand the ‘lived-experiences?of PwPD, and found that commonly used clinical definitions can over-simplify the complex reality of living with the condition. It also showed that a greater emphasis on understanding the more complex physical, mental, societal and emotional aspects of PD could be beneficial. UCB hopes that by sharing this knowledge more broadly, it may be possible to improve patient outcomes by addressing what matters most to them.

We hope that with both DRIVE?and STEP? UCB can support the PD community to adopt new perspectives about how to better appreciate patient needs, and help develop solutions to better support patients throughout their treatment journey.

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<![CDATA[UCB celebrates International Epilepsy Day and new horizons in disease management]]> UCB celebrates International Epilepsy Day and new horizons in disease management]]>Posted by Chris Clark, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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UCB is proud to support the International Bureau for Epilepsy (IBE) and the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) in their activities to highlight the problems faced by people with epilepsy, their families, and carers.

This year, the IBE and ILAE are running a photography competition centred on the theme ‘Life is Beautiful?which aims to highlight how life can be beautiful despite an epilepsy diagnosis. Improving the overall epilepsy patient experience is central to UCB’s patient value strategy and we continually strive to explore new and innovative ways to support patients to live their lives to the fullest.

We believe we are entering an exciting new era in the management of epilepsy, transitioning from a symptom-led approach to disease management towards creating targeted solutions that support the patient across the spectrum of care ?from prevention and prediction to treatment and self-management. This paradigm shift drives us to search for new ways to combine our leadership in complex treatments with technologies of all kinds to improve lives.

There remains an immediate need within the epilepsy community for innovative treatments and disease management solutions, with around 30 ?40% of patients still experiencing uncontrolled seizures. As well as discovering and developing novel treatments for underserved patient populations, we are also working with a broad range of partners to co-create innovative technology solutions for patients.

Examples of our partnerships include the IMI RADAR initiative, which works to refine and improve intervention and treatment strategies with the use of remote monitoring of patients.  We are addressing treatment management through our SeizeIT consortium which develops wearable technologies to monitor seizure occurrence. And, with our Eliprio programme, in partnership with the Georgia Institute of Technology, we’re also exploring how, by harnessing predictive analytics and machine learning, we can better personalize treatment for people with epilepsy, potentially expediting their pathway to an effective anti-epilepsy medicine. Through partnerships like these with industry, academic institutions, and non-profit organisations, we are already seeing exciting developments with the potential to dramatically improve patient experiences.

Looking ahead, we are excited to continue this work at the upcoming Epilepsy Pipeline Conference on 22 February in San Francisco, where we will be taking part in discussions around investments in epilepsy treatments and pre-clinical treatments on the horizon.

We are on the precipice of change for the treatment of epilepsy, and by working together we can help patients to live their lives to their ideal.

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<![CDATA[UCB in top 10 most sustainable large corporations ]]> UCB in top 10 most sustainable large corporations ]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Our inclusion among the top performers in the corporate world reflects our commitment to delivering value to patients, as well as to society and shareholders, while respecting our environment.

The list, published by Corporate Knights, is released annually on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. This is the 14th year in which the top 100 is selected based on a set of up to 17 environmental, social and governance indicators.

Almost 6,000 publicly listed companies from 22 countries, and across all sectors of the economy, are assessed as part of a rigorous process.

According to Corporate Knights, the leading companies demonstrate the strong linkage between the delivery of superior value for society and the generation of superior financial performance. They also have greater longevity.

The Global 100 list also shows that good corporate citizenship pays in the long run. While the average multinational has been around for less than 40 years, the median age of the 2018 Global 100 companies is 85. UCB, founded in 1928, is very slightly older than average!

We are pleased that our efforts to add value in a sustainable way have been recognised again this year. It encourages us to continue our efforts in the interest of longevity ?and in the hope of seeing ourselves in the Global 100 again next year.

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<![CDATA[What is it like to live with Parkinson’s disease? ]]> What is it like to live with Parkinson’s disease? ]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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At UCB, everything we do is guided by one simple question ?how can we create more value for people living with severe diseases? With this in mind, we commissioned STEP? an innovative market research (“research? programme, to help us understand the real lived experiences of people living with Parkinson’s disease. These insights, shared with the Parkinson’s community in the current edition of Parkinson’s Life magazine, have the potential to improve the way we approach patient care for people with Parkinson’s, and the way we provide support for them and their families.

The STEP?research was undertaken in the UK, US and Canada. It included 63 people with Parkinson’s, between the ages of 40 and 76, who had lived with Parkinson’s for between six months and 21 years and had varied experiences of treatment. A total of 19 partners and those providing care, 18 healthcare professionals and other Parkinson’s experts also took part.

Researchers visited participants at home to glean first-hand experiences about living with the condition. People with Parkinson’s and their loved ones were asked to speak freely about their experiences, and some also took part in group discussions where they shared the aspects that mattered most to them.

The researchers ?who were anthropologists and strategists ?also held in-depth one-to-one interviews with healthcare professionals and other experts who have frequent contact with people living with the condition, and visited the places where they interact.

The findings suggest that people with Parkinson’s first experience the condition as a lifestyle disorder, then as intermittent periods of capability and loss, and finally as a loss of independence.

Based on these insights, UCB identified a number of phases experienced by patients, loved ones, or care givers, as each an individual Parkinson’s journey unfolds. These range from ?b>Pre-diagnosis?/b>, perhaps noticing early first signs of Parkinson’s such as a finger twitch transitioning to a ‘Lifestyle?/b> phase where patients are adjusting to live with their condition,  ‘Straddling?/b>, referring to periods of time with limited symptoms (for example when medication is working and symptoms are reduced) alongside times where symptoms are more severe (for example when positive medication effects have  worn off), culminating in a ‘Disease?/b> phase, where after years of ‘straddling? management of symptoms becomes increasingly challenging, impairing on independence and impacting on their entire personhood as they know it.

Our STEP?market research was presented at a previous World Parkinson Congress, and the response from attendees was both heart-warming and inspiring. Some delegates expressed genuine surprise at the breadth and nature of the research, and with our objective of better understanding the day to day lived experiences of people with Parkinson’s. We are extremely proud of our commitment to support patients in improving their lives - whether that means bringing them medicines that alleviate symptoms, raising disease awareness, finding novel ways for patients and health professionals to communicate, or moving medical science forward.

Following the positive reception to STEP? UCB developed a comprehensive report summarizing and discussing the market research finding, which can be downloaded here. The research clearly demonstrates that Parkinson’s has an impact on a person’s life, relationships and sense of self.

By better understanding the lived experiences of people with Parkinson’s, we hope our evidence-based market research could support the  Global Parkinson’s community in developing more appropriate and holistic approaches, with the confidence that they are addressing real needs.

In our opinion, this is what it means to be Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science.

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<![CDATA[Epilepsy and the workplace: improving understanding and creating opportunities ]]> Epilepsy and the workplace: improving understanding and creating opportunities ]]>Posted by Florian Kötting, Talent Services Central Europe .
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A lot of water has gone under the bridge since then, but epilepsy is still a stigmatised disease that often raises doubts as to an individual’s capabilities. This can be especially true where the workplace and employment are concerned. That’s something we wanted to change at UCB in Germany and we also wished to assuage other employers?concerns about dealing with people living with epilepsy.

Concrete solutions
The watershed moment came from an exchange with a UCB patient ambassador who candidly told us the things she and others are concerned about: concrete problems surrounding the issues of job-hunting, finding employment, and talking to one’s employer about epilepsy.

As HR staff at UCB in Germany, we are directly concerned with these issues and clearly recognised that increasing levels of knowledge and awareness was an absolutely crucial factor.

For this purpose, we researched what information was currently available. What struck us in the process was that most documents are primarily focused on obstacles and difficulties ?in other words, they highlight problems that might potentially arise. What was lacking was a concrete way of showing what employers can do to employ people with epilepsy.

Hence, we came up with the idea of providing such information ourselves, in the form of a presentation showing epilepsy in a neutral light and simultaneously making it understandable to non-medical target groups. We wanted to explain what epilepsy really means and how little impact the disease actually has on the workplace ?instead of focusing on all manner of things that have to be taken into account.

A positive light
In April 2017, key figures from several pharmaceutical companies came together at a meeting of HR directors hosted by UCB in Germany. We presented the topic in this forum for the first time so as to raise a new awareness of the disease and alleviate the uncertainties surrounding the topic of epilepsy and the workplace.

We wanted to provide information about epilepsy in a way that assuages possible prejudices and hence increases the chances of success for applicants with epilepsy. It was especially important for us to also get feedback from the other participants since our presentation was still in the development phase and directed towards non-medical target groups and employers.

What’s next?
Until now, people with epilepsy patients have often found entry into the working world very arduous, not only from a bureaucratic standpoint but also due to the great amount of information and clarification that potential employers may require during a job interview.

The presentation may be a very good instrument for avoiding such problems in future. Not just for people with epilepsy , but for companies too. For instance, we have already integrated information into our presentation on what to do if a colleague has an epileptic seizure.

We are currently considering the idea of including other elements: such as looking into the possibilities of staging an applicant coaching course via our UCB HR department. With an eye on the future, we hope to not only provide further information and clarification for HR professionals but to also give applicants the necessary boost in self-confidence they may need when applying to a potential employer.

We also feel it is important not to place any restrictions on the use of the presentation, but to make it available to other companies for their use and further development. Our shared goal throughout must be to help more people with epilepsy get into gainful employment.

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<![CDATA[Top marks for transparency: UCB praised for reporting clinical research data]]> Top marks for transparency: UCB praised for reporting clinical research data]]>Posted by Isabelle Gautherot, Global Clinical Development & Medical Affairs.
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Universities, research institutes and pharmaceutical companies are legally required to report clinical trial results to public databases. At UCB, we are working hard to be leaders in fostering transparency in our field for the benefit of patients.

One of the ways we do this is through the ClinicalTrials.gov website ?a US federal database for registering clinical research studies and sharing study results. STAT News, a reputable news website focused on health and medical topics, analysed how research-performing organisations use the system.

A team of STAT News analysts examined more than 250,000 studies registered on ClinicalTrials.gov and excluded all studies that were not required by law to be reported. For the remaining ~18,700 studies, STAT rated the performance of organisations as to whether they had reported the information on time, every time.

UCB was highlighted for its exemplary approach to clinical trial reporting. “Stellar results came from a few drug companies, including Belgium-based UCB ?the top performer of any leading organization,?according to STAT News. “It was among a handful of top research entities that posted all required trial results. And unlike most others, UCB did so within the legal time limit in the vast majority of cases.?br>
We are pleased to be recognised as one of a handful of research entities that reported all required trial results. As a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of innovative medicines, UCB supports responsible sharing of clinical study data. By doing this, we hope to support the generation of new scientific knowledge or insights, which ultimately benefit patients.

In the Clinical Studies section of our website, you can learn more about our approach to sharing results with patients who participate in our studies, enhancing public access to study information, and sharing data with researchers.

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<![CDATA[Keeping it simple: UCB is working to make scientific information more accessible to patients]]> Keeping it simple: UCB is working to make scientific information more accessible to patients]]>Posted by Catherine Bégard, Medical & Business Integrity EMEA .
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However, research and review articles in medical journals can be complex and written in a way that makes them useful only to those with considerable scientific or medical expertise.

One way to help increase the meaningfulness of and access to this wealth of information for patients could be the use of plain language within the peer-reviewed articles.

UCB researchers have published an article examining the value and feasibility of developing plain language summaries as part of peer-reviewed articles in medical journals. The article, which appears in the Therapeutic Innovation & Regulatory Science journal, shows there is an appetite among patients and physicians for more digestible specialized health-related information.

Physicians noted the value of the plain language summaries in generating dialogue, saving time and streamlining communication with patients, as patients are not completely dependent on them for information.

A predominant theme emerging from patients was the importance of knowledge and the sense of empowerment it engenders. Patients viewed the plain language summaries as tools to facilitate knowledge sharing and improve access to important information.

As one patient noted: “Creating and providing abstracts [plain language summaries] will help physicians build a good relationship with their patients. The abstracts are short, simple and easy to talk about.?br>
Walking the talk, our first peer-reviewed article including a plain language summary was recently published.

UCB is already active in sharing ?a href="http://www.mingzhong1.com/our-science/Our-clinical-studies/Study-Results-Lay-Summaries" class="" target="_blank">lay summaries?of clinical study results on our website, and we view inclusion of plain language summaries in peer-reviewed publications as the next step and an important advance towards accessibility and sharing of scientific knowledge.

UCB is guiding best practice by further developing a framework for inclusion of plain language summaries as an integral part of peer-reviewed publications.

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<![CDATA[UCB Germany happy to collect a Human Resources Excellence Award 2017]]> UCB Germany happy to collect a Human Resources Excellence Award 2017]]>Posted by Werner Bleilevens, Communications Central Europe.
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Our team at UCB Germany has just won a prize for its innovative approach to recruitment.  We were very happy to collect a Human Resources Excellence Award 2017 in the “Recruiting marketing campaign?category.

The award recognises a video produced as part of our search for young talent. The film aims to position UCB as an attractive employer in Germany, especially for younger people.

The movie turns a regular interview situation upside down: UCB applies to be an employer. The use of animated graphics, virtual reality glasses and drone footage makes it dynamic, modern and interesting for candidates.

An interactive feature turns the user into the screenwriter, allowing them to decide how the film proceeds. Not only did several of our young colleagues star in the film ?colleagues from all departments and levels contributed their time. This is a testament to the sense of team spirit and collegiality at UCB.

It was an intensely competitive category with over 400 submissions. In late October, we learned that we had been shortlisted along with some of the world’s biggest brands in the healthcare, retail and automotive sectors. We were delighted that our presentation convinced the jury that the initiative deserved to be recognised with a prize.

Watch our film. Find out about UCB careers http://www.mingzhong1.com/careers/.

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<![CDATA[AES 2017: Uniting the global epilepsy community and striving toward a world without epilepsy]]> AES 2017: Uniting the global epilepsy community and striving toward a world without epilepsy]]>Posted by Mike Davis, UCB U.S. Neurology Patient Value Unit.
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It certainly resonates with everyone involved with epilepsy at UCB: supporting patients in their journey towards seizure freedom underpins everything we do.

At the AES meeting, as part of our commitment to helping make this goal a reality, UCB will be sharing 25 scientific posters ?a great illustration of the extent to which, as a company, we’re inspired by patients and driven by science. The posters include new research and data about some of our current epilepsy medicines as well as exciting new information about prospective pipeline candidate medicines. In the future, these new solutions could provide new treatment options for patients with drug-resistant epilepsy or pediatric epileptic encephalopathies such as infantile spasms.

We’ll also be presenting a wide range of data including results from a social media survey to access perceptions of patient information leaflets and pre-clinical data identifying a potential target receptor for epilepsy therapy.

Alongside our scientific data, we look forward to further demonstrating and reinforcing our overarching passion for neurology and our commitment to addressing and improving the lives of people living with epilepsy.

Throughout AES 2017, at our Outcomes Accelerator and Catalyst Café, UCB colleagues will be facilitating interactive conversations with delegates and focusing on how, together, we can ‘?RiseAbove?expectations of care for people with epilepsy. Harnessing innovative technologies, such as a virtual reality seizure simulation, we hope to demonstrate some of the realities faced by people with epilepsy and to support the global epilepsy community in addressing some of these challenges.

We’ll also showcase collaborations which are already making a difference and sharing real-world examples of positive interventions such as the UCB Scholars Program and Canine Assistants partnership which deliver significant value to people with epilepsy.

Our global epilepsy commitment, along with more than 20 years of  research, development and marketing of medicines for epilepsy, requires agility, interaction, and collaboration with leading experts and patient organizations across the world. We continue to work to address the significant unmet needs that still exist to support people in managing their epilepsy.

Providing additional value to patients, and striving to ensure that all our stakeholders ?be they customers, doctors, healthcare providers ?are able to benefit from our epilepsy knowledge, passion, and experience is central to everything we do at UCB.

Together with the AES, and the global epilepsy community, we are committed to improving the care and treatment of people with epilepsy, and to supporting them on their journey towards seizure freedom ?helping them to live their lives at their ideal.

In these endeavors, we are proud to stand alongside the AES and the wider epilepsy community in working toward a world without epilepsy.

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<![CDATA[New UCB research published in Science Translational Medicine]]> New UCB research published in Science Translational Medicine]]>Posted by Peter Kiessling, Global Clinical Development & Medical Affairs Practice.
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Science Translational Medicine, the authors report on the therapeutic potential of a new antibody.

The molecule, known as rozanolixizumab, is currently being explored as a treatment in a number of IgG-driven autoimmune diseases ?conditions where the natural defence system mistakenly attacks its own body. For example, common autoimmune diseases include rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. Existing antibody-based treatments have proven to be effective in several autoimmune conditions. At UCB, we continue to work on addressing unmet need in other immune disorders.

Rozanolixizumab is currently being studied in patients with immune thrombocytopenic purpura ?a disease where patients?blood platelets are attacked by the immune system and myasthenia gravis ?a condition associated with muscle weakness for which there is a need for better therapies.

In all of these, understanding how the antibody interacts with the immune system is crucial. In particular, these diseases are characterised by immunoglobulin G (IgG) auto-antibodies. There are existing treatments for IgG-related conditions but they can be burdensome on patients, very time-consuming, and some have a high burden of side effects. Our goal is to find new approaches to tackling IgG by using rozanolixizumab.

This is the latest example of how UCB is advancing medical knowledge in immunology as we work towards delivering new treatment options for patients with severe autoimmune diseases.

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<![CDATA[Psoriasis: a common disease with a profound impact on patients]]> Psoriasis: a common disease with a profound impact on patients]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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To mark World Psoriasis Day (October 29), we are lending our voice to those of patients and health professionals working to raise awareness of a disease that has a major effect on quality of life. This annual event, organized by the International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA), has been helping to advance public understanding of psoriasis for more than a decade.

Psoriasis causes a rapid buildup of extra skin cells that form thick, silvery scales and itchy, dry red patches. However, it is now widely recognized as more than a skin disease as research has shown significant involvement of other body systems.

Several other serious diseases have been associated with psoriasis, including diabetes, heart disease, and psoriatic arthritis, a chronic disease that causes inflammation, swelling, and pain in the joints.

Who is affected?
Women and men of all ages and ethnicities are affected by psoriasis. The disease has a variety of forms. Plaque psoriasis is most common, comprising approximately 80% to 90% of all cases.

UCB is working to improve the lives of people affected by psoriasis. We have spent time with more than 80 patients over the past two years and have developed a deep understanding of their experience of plaque psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.

Almost 60% of people with psoriasis say the disease causes problems in their everyday lives. They often suffer isolation, preferring not to be seen in public. Patients can suffer from stress, anxiety, embarrassment and exclusion.

UCB has recently made impressive strides in bringing value to psoriasis patients. Our scientists are applying their expertise in the immune system and inflammatory diseases to address unmet needs in the psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis patient populations.

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<![CDATA[2017, the story so far: Good growth leading to increased earnings outlook for 2017]]> 2017, the story so far: Good growth leading to increased earnings outlook for 2017]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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Revenue increased by 9% to ?3.3 billion. For our main products, revenue grew by 15% to ?2.6 billion for the first nine months of the year. This continues the trend of strong growth driven by our core medicines.

The company’s performance so far means that our financial outlook for 2017 is increased. UCB now expects 2017 revenue to reach ?4.4 - 4.5 billion; recurring EBITDA should increase to ?1.25 ?1.35 billion. Core earnings per share are expected in the range of ?4.10 ?4.50 based on an expected average of 188 million shares outstanding.

There was also some welcome news in September when our latest epilepsy medicine was approved in the US as a monotherapy for partial-onset seizures in patients 16 years of age and older.

This year has also seen another of our epilepsy products approved as monotherapy for partial-onset seizures of epilepsy patients with or without secondary generalization in Japan, and in the EU as monotherapy and adjunctive therapy in the treatment of partial-onset seizures with or without secondary generalisation in adults, adolescents and children from 4 years of age.

This is positive for UCB, of course, but also good news for patients and physicians who will now have additional treatment options.

At the same time, we are progressing our promising pipeline and have reported positive results for a new psoriasis treatment. Once again, this demonstrates our commitment to making new treatment options available to people with severe diseases.

As regular readers will know, I am a keen sailor. To borrow some maritime terminology, we are enjoying a good cruise on a strong boat with a skilled crew.

For more information on this or related matters, don’t hesitate to contact me and the IR team.

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<![CDATA[UCB highlights commitment to osteoporosis awareness]]> UCB highlights commitment to osteoporosis awareness]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Osteoporosis is a condition which weakens bones over time, making them thinner and more likely to break; even a fall from standing height can lead to a broken bone. It is a major public health concern, estimated to affect  more than 200 million people worldwide1-3 and yet, osteoporosis is severely underdiagnosed. In fact, 80 percent of people who have had at least one osteoporotic fracture are neither identified nor treated for this potentially life-altering disease, 4 which consequently leaves them at increased risk of a future fracture.

In the lead up to World Osteoporosis Day, UCB has been showcasing its commitment to a world free of fragility fractures with a range of events at its head office and local UCB offices. UCB employees have been showing their commitment to making fracture prevention a global health priority by signing the International Osteoporosis Foundation’s (IOF) Global Patient Charter, which calls for the right to timely and accurate assessment of fracture risk and diagnosis of osteoporosis, increased access to effective intervention options and support from healthcare providers, to ensure that patients can live active and independent lives.

UCB colleagues have also developed a series of videos around the impact of osteoporosis on people’s lives. Click here to watch Fiona De Hemptinne speak about why it is so important to improve understanding around osteoporosis.

To learn more about World Osteoporosis Day, visit the website at www.worldosteoporosisday.org. If you would like to sign the IOF Global Patient Charter, please click here.

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<![CDATA[Applying science to addressing climate change]]> Applying science to addressing climate change]]>Posted by Marc Van Meldert, Health, Safety & Environment.
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The commitment by 195 countries to limit the increase of global temperature by the end of the century to well below 2˚C must be translated into a robust set of specific targets for companies like ours.

Our promise: carbon neutrality by 2030
As our Green Strategy shows, we take our responsibility to the planet very seriously. Our goal is to develop and produce medicines in the most environmentally sustainable way possible. That means reducing our carbon footprint, our water consumption and our waste production across the company.

Through the Science-Based Target Initiative, we have confirmed our climate targets to make our operations carbon neutral by 2030 . We are now working to define targets for activities in our value chain which we do not control directly. This includes activities performed, for example, by suppliers and Contract Manufacturing Organisations on behalf of our company.

In addition to our robust strategy to reduce carbon emissions, our company has launched two reforestation projects and another designed to avoid deforestation.

These projects will compensate for the carbon emissions we cannot reduce in the short term.

The transition to a low-carbon economy is accelerating globally. Industry leaders must step up innovation and improve efficiencies if we are to reach our shared goals. By applying science to one of the biggest challenges in the world, we will play our part in preparing UCB for the future.

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<![CDATA[Partnering to better understand and support the epilepsy community]]> Partnering to better understand and support the epilepsy community]]>Posted by Matt Schumacher, Neurology Patient Value Unit.
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We are excited to have recently announced a collaboration with Partners Connected Health to develop innovative healthcare solutions to better support people living with epilepsy.

The collaboration between UCB and Partners Connected Health ?an integrated health system founded by Brigham and Women's Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital and one of the nation's leading biomedical research organizations and a principal teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School ?is focused on addressing some of the unmet needs currently faced by some of the three million Americans living with epilepsy.

The goal is to provide better connectivity between patients, healthcare providers, and payors, delivering improved experiences and better treatment outcomes.

This project leverages UCB's experience in epilepsy and extensive ethnographic research which focused on understanding the lived experiences of people with epilepsy and their families, to develop solutions to improve outcomes and quality of life.

The project team will work to improve four key areas of need identified within UCB's research:
  • Life in between: Living with epilepsy encompasses a life of actively waiting, a life less lived.
  • Complexity of control: Control for people living with epilepsy is the power to choose, not the medical definition of seizure control.
  • Care is a family affair: Acknowledgement and understanding about the critical role family members and caregivers can play, along with patients and healthcare professionals, in the management of epilepsy.
  • Welcome to the system: Tackling the complexity faced by patients when accessing healthcare, reducing information overload and improving healthcare system navigation.
This new initiative provides a unique opportunity to develop highly tailored solutions within a single healthcare system, while incorporating patient and caregiver feedback. We hope to measure  how novel models of care can deliver improvements such as reducing hospital readmissions for individuals diagnosed with epilepsy, better treatment outcomes, and improved patient satisfaction.

We’ll be sure to share our findings, and hopefully some future successes, on UCB.com ?be sure to check back in the future for more updates!

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<![CDATA[World Arthritis Day: "Don’t delay, connect today" ]]> World Arthritis Day: "Don’t delay, connect today" ]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation .
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Rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs) can have a profound impact on people’s lives by limiting movement and independence. However, early diagnosis and timely access to evidence-based treatments can minimise damage to joints, reducing the burden on patients and society.

At UCB, we are working to improve the lives of people with RMDs by raising disease awareness and investing in research. For example, our scientists aim to provide new innovative treatment options so that people affected by these conditions can live beyond the constraints of their severe diseases.

Disease awareness
Some forms of arthritis, such as osteoarthritis, arise from wear and tear on the joints. Other RMDs are inflammatory diseases. Given our expertise in immunological conditions, our focus is on diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis and psoriatic arthritis.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis is a progressive disease which causes chronic inflammation of the joints. It generally affects the fingers, thumbs, wrists, feet and ankles. An estimated 5 million people suffer from RA in France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and US alone. Women are three times as likely to be affected and, while it can strike at any age, the disease most commonly begins between the ages of 40 and 60.
  • Axial spondyloarthritis is a chronic form of arthritis that causes significant inflammatory low back and/or buttock pain that persists more than three months. The condition often affects the bones and joints at the base of the spine where it connects with the pelvis. When the disease is active, these joints become inflamed. Unlike back pain caused by sports injuries or accidents, axSpA is an inflammatory condition and is generally chronic.
  • Psoriatic arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease. It causes inflammation, swelling, joint pain, splitting fingernails and toe nails that often peel away from the nail bed, eye pain and redness, and pain in the back of the heel.
At UCB, we will continue to raise awareness of RMDs and to bring innovative treatments to people who need them ?on World Arthritis Day, and every day.

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<![CDATA[UCB's green strategy]]> UCB]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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At UCB, we take our responsibility to the planet very seriously. Our goal is to develop and produce medicines for people with severe diseases in the most environmentally sustainable way possible.

This means reducing our carbon footprint, our water consumption and our waste production across the company. We have set clear, absolute targets to measure our progress, focussing on the activities we can control directly.

Find out more on our Green strategy page.

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<![CDATA[Advancing Women in Bone Science and Research ]]> Advancing Women in Bone Science and Research ]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Diversity is something that UCB has always both valued and celebrated; therefore, as part of ASBMR 2017, UCB is proud to be sponsoring the Women in Bone and Mineral Research Evening Network Reception on Friday 8th September. This event aims to foster conversations and connections among attendees, as well as present an opportunity to discuss career challenges faced by women in science.

Events like these are vitally important, especially when faced with statistics from the World Economic Forum that have estimated, at the current rate of progress, it will take until 2133 to close the global gender gap across health, education, economic opportunity and politics.

And in science, the numbers are similarly worrying. While women make up half of the total U.S. college-educated workforce, they only make up 29% of the science and engineering workforce.  In a similar trend, according to WISE, a UK campaign for gender balance in science, technology and engineering, the number of female science professionals dropped from 50% of the UK workforce in 2015 to 41% in 2016, representing a decrease of 14,000 women in science-related professions in the UK.

The reason for this disparity is often attributed to ‘a lack of role models, lack of women in senior roles and lack of access to senior roles for women? according to a recent survey of women by the UK’s Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).

But the tide is turning. UCB’s 2015 'science survey?of 234 UK school children, showed that science is the most popular school subject, with slightly more girls (35%) choosing it as their favourite subject than boys (27%). To continue this trend, women across science should be recognised for their excellence in their field of study, providing young girls with role models whose career paths can provide an example. In addition, research institutes and scientific organisations should recognise and reward women in science with the senior roles that have, until recently, been primarily occupied by men.

The Women in Bone and Mineral Research Reception therefore provides a valuable forum in which women can discuss the rewards and barriers they face in their scientific careers. And committees such as ASBMR’s Women in Bone and Mineral Research help to support and further the advancement and impact of women in science.

For more updates on UCB activities at ASBMR 2017 follow us on Twitter. To learn more about UCB in osteoporosis, go to our section Disease areas.

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<![CDATA[UCB highlights latest research in osteoporosis care at ASBMR Annual Meeting ]]> UCB highlights latest research in osteoporosis care at ASBMR Annual Meeting ]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation .
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Taking place in Denver, Colorado from September 8 ?11, the Annual Meeting is the world’s largest and most diverse meeting in the bone, mineral and musculoskeletal research field, attracting a large number of attendees from across the world.

More than 200 million people worldwide have osteoporosis and the condition is responsible for 8.9 million fractures annually worldwide. Yet, osteoporosis is severely underdiagnosed - 80% of people who have had at least one osteoporotic fracture are neither identified nor treated7 ?leading to the condition being called the ‘silent disease?

This year, UCB will be presenting key research into the treatment of osteoporosis, including
  • Data on our investigational monoclonal antibody (romosozumab) compared to the standard of care in the treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis
  • An evidence-based theoretical model for fracture risk which examined both direct and indirect effects of several predictors on having one or more fractures in the immediate year after assessment
  • Data from a retrospective cohort study in osteoporosis patients to describe frequency of transitions between T-score (a measure of bone density) categories, and the quantitative changes in bone mineral density according to drug treatment.
The UCB Bone Patient Value Unit is committed to working together with the bone community to improve the treatment of osteoporosis and helping to create a world free of fragility fractures.

For more updates on UCB activities at ASBMR 2017 follow us on Twitter. To learn more about UCB in osteoporosis, go to our Disease Areas section.

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<![CDATA[Brain science: supporting education initiatives ]]> Brain science: supporting education initiatives ]]>Posted by Shiro Huang, Public Relations China.
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But is the public aware of these exciting advances in brain science? Despite broad interest in artificial intelligence, human memory and other areas of neuroscience, public knowledge of how the brain works remains limited.

At UCB, we firmly believe that the benefits of medical research should reach everyone. Science museums and education campaigns can play a crucial role in informing, engaging and exciting the general public ?and young people in particular ?about the fruits of research.

That is why we have created a new education fund which will bring neuroscience knowledge to the public.

The UCB Brain Science Education Special Fund is the first of its kind in China. The fund will support the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum (SSTM) and the Shanghai Science Education Development Foundation (SSEDF) in upgrading museum displays related to brain science and in delivering public education programs.

We are pleased to work with these well-established partner organisations to achieve our shared goals of improving public knowledge of brain science. The SSTM has been ranked in the top 10 most visited museums in the world, attracting over three million people every year. The SSEDF is a non-profit foundation focused on science education in China where it has carried out over 200 activities.

The collaboration, initiated on 20 August by the signing of a Letter of Intent, fits with UCB’s ongoing commitment to supporting public education programmes in China. UCB China has been working with the medical associations and institutions to raise public awareness of epilepsy and to reduce stigma, as well as improving medical knowledge among health professionals.

We look forward to working with the SSTM and SSEDF in this exciting public engagement initiative.

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<![CDATA[Life after Fracture: Recurrence and Risk Factors at the FFN Congress]]> Life after Fracture: Recurrence and Risk Factors at the FFN Congress]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Osteoporosis is a global health crisis and whilst treatment can reduce the subsequent risk of fracture by 15-70%, a huge majority of osteoporosis patients are still not being identified or initiated on to treatment following a fracture.

UCB recently attended this year’s Fragility Fracture Network (FFN) Congress in Malmö, Sweden, where data from a recent study investigating the incidence and risk factors for new fractures in Swedish patients were presented. The analysis was performed by Quantify Research and funded by UCB.

The study analysed Swedish patient register data of postmenopausal women with their first observed fracture, from 2006-2012 and found that after a vertebral fracture the risk of subsequent fracture within 12 month is 2-times higher than other fracture types. Other identified risk factors included advanced age, particularly in those over 80 years, multiple comorbidities and taking drugs that increase the risk of falls.

These data, taken from a real-world setting, act as a reminder that post-fracture diagnosis and treatment are extremely important aspects of osteoporosis care, particularly in a disease area where so few people are treated following first fracture. This treatment gap was demonstrated in another study supported by UCB and presented at FFN, which found that only 6.6% of treatment-naïve patients over the age of 50 started osteoporosis treatment within one year of first fracture.

Attention to all such risk factors, most importantly advanced age where treatment initiation in in the post-fracture setting is often below average, will assist in identifying postmenopausal women at short-term subsequent fracture risk.

To learn more about the osteoporosis treatment gap, you can access the International Osteoporosis Foundation’s report "Mind the (treatment) gap: a global perspective on current and future strategies for prevention of fragility fractures" here.

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<![CDATA[UCB shows commitment to osteoporosis care at Fragility Fracture Network congress]]> UCB shows commitment to osteoporosis care at Fragility Fracture Network congress]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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The annual meeting addresses the full pathway of care for fragility fracture patients. With international experts, leading clinicians, researchers and professional health workers in attendance, the congress provides a unique opportunity to learn more about new technical developments and state-of-the-art procedures for fragility fracture patients.

Osteoporosis causes more than 8.9 million fractures annually, this equates to one osteoporotic fracture ever three seconds. Worldwide, 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men over the age of 50 will experience a fragility fracture due to osteoporosis.

Like other chronic diseases, osteoporosis is asymptomatic until a fracture occurs ?thus it’s often called a ‘silent disease?and yet the condition remains severely underdiagnosed and undertreated.

Fractures are a warning sign that a person’s bones have weakened. A fracture sufferer needs to know that the fracture they had demands action ?a sense of urgency to act.

At UCB our Bone Patient Value Unit is committed to osteoporosis and is striving for a world free of fragility fractures.

During FFN, we will be presenting some of our important osteoporosis research. This will include:
  • Data on our investigational monoclonal antibody assessing it’s potential to reduce the risk for fracture in post-menopausal women
  • "The Treatment Gap After Fracture in Osteoporosis Patients in Sweden" has been accepted as one of the top six poster presentations at the congress. Based on Swedish patient registry data, research highlights the need for significant efforts to improve osteoporosis management post-fracture in Sweden
  • Fracture occurrence is a strong risk factor for subsequent fractures and the poster, "Near-Term Fracture (FX) Incidence and Risk Factors Following Fracture in a Swedish Database Study" reviewed known risk factors, e.g., advanced age or steroid use, and highlights how paying attention to all such risk factors, most importantly advanced age, will assist in identifying post-menopausal women at short-term risk of a subsequent fracture.
For more updates on UCB activities at FFN 2017 follow us on Twitter. To learn more about UCB in osteoporosis, go to our Disease areas section.

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<![CDATA[UCB wins award for helping people with rheumatic diseases]]> UCB wins award for helping people with rheumatic diseases]]>Posted by Jesus Sobrino, UCB Iberia.
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The award reflects UCB’s tireless research in rheumatology which has generated real value for patients, as well as innovative initiatives designed to improve quality of life by supporting the patient community.

This is the sixth year of the "La RazQn's A Tu Salud Awards" which recognise excellence and innovation in the fields of medicine, science and technology, and the environment. The prizes were presented by the Minister of Health, Dolors Montserrat, at a ceremony attended by leading Spanish healthcare stakeholders. The winners were chosen by a jury of 12 well-known personalities from the world of health.

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From the left to the right: Francisco Marhuenda, President of La RazQn, Jesús Sobrino, Area Head Iberia and Dolors Montserrat, Spanish Minister of Health Social Services and Equality

Meeting patients?needs

UCB was praised for its contribution to research which has helped to bring revolutionary new treatments for rheumatic diseases to patients. We were also pleased to hear acknowledgement of our efforts to improve patients?quality of life and increase adherence to medicine.

For example, UCB-led initiatives such as the Health Ecosystem Solution (HES) and the patient education website "Arthritis Hoy" show our commitment to bringing new ideas to patient care.

The HES supports patients with educational material and training in their own homes. Through psychological supports and advice on healthy lifestyles, a holistic approach to improving quality of life is taken.

Arthritis Hoy is a Spanish-language website which offers support to patients with rheumatic diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, spondyloarthritis or psoriasic arthritis. This site is full of information about staying healthy, expert advice and video testimonials from patients.

These initiatives have established UCB as a leading player in the field of rheumatology. The recent award from "La RazQn" provides an additional boost to our reputation in Spain. The prize has received strong media coverage, not least from "La RazQn" which published a supplement which had a readership of around 235,000. TV, radio and online media have also covered the event.

At UCB, we take endorsements like this as a sign that we are doing something right. It encourages us to continue to find new ways to bring value to patients through our medicines and by developing imaginative patient-support initiatives.

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<![CDATA[UCB partners with UK scientists on antibody discovery initiative]]> UCB partners with UK scientists on antibody discovery initiative]]>Posted by Ross Carroll, Government Affairs & Market Access.
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Since the first approval of a therapeutic monoclonal antibody over 30 years ago, antibodies have become established therapies in a range of disease areas such as autoimmune conditions, infectious diseases and cancer.

The MRC has been at the forefront of scientific discovery to improve human health for more than a century. Originally founded in 1913 to help tackle tuberculosis, the Council now invests UK taxpayer's money in medical research.

Its track record is impressive: 31 MRC-funded researchers have won Nobel prizes and its scientists have been behind the discoveries of vitamins, the structure of DNA and the link between smoking and cancer.

Under the partnership initiative, the MRC is funding up to five projects per year over three years to allow researchers access to UCB’s antibody platform based in Slough in order to generate novel antibodies that can be tested in models of disease.

At the centre of the collaboration will be UCB’s high-throughput antibody discovery technology. Several early steps in the process have been automated to expand the capacity, increase the speed and improve the consistency of the antibody discovery process.

This means that large numbers of antibodies can be sampled quickly to assess if they are suitable for the research or treatment of human diseases.

The partnership with the MRC complements UCB’s existing Antibody Technology Platform Access Programme which has already resulted in collaborations with institutions including the University of Oxford, UCL and Weill Cornell Medical College. The initiative will enhance collaborative networks with academic institutions in the UK and stimulate research in the academic community.

The call to submit projects opened on 2nd August and will close at 4pm (BST) on 27th September 2017 with projects expected to start from Q2 2018.

Partnership is an essential element in modern medicine. At UCB we are committed to increasing our collaborative networks to accelerate scientific discovery. We want to facilitate industry-academic interaction to generate potential therapeutics to benefit patients living with severe diseases.

This joint initiative with the MRC is a world-leading collaboration between academia and industry with the aim of enhancing the pace of new drug discovery and improving patient outcomes.

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<![CDATA[Strong Half Year Results improve outlook for 2017]]> Strong Half Year Results improve outlook for 2017]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
This week we have published the UCB Half Year Results and, in light of an impressive performance, we have updated the outlook for 2017.
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This is a sign that UCB is performing solidly, even in uncertain times. As a keen sailor, I know that one cannot always expect plain sailing but it is reassuring that the good ship UCB is solidly built and can weather heavy storms ?all thanks to its skilled mariners, of course!

The report paints a picture of UCB, offering investors and other stakeholders insights into our company. For me, one of the key headlines is the fact that our five core products represents 85% of UCB’s sales.

For those looking to understand the company, it is heartening to know that if you are familiar with these five products ?spread over our two key areas of expertise, neurology and immunology ?you can quite swiftly understand UCB. This enhances transparency and reduces complexity, which I know many investors find appealing.

The report is also a window on the future, providing updates on our R&D pipeline and our continued commitment to bringing new products to patients in areas such as osteoporosis. It shows that we are in good shape as we sail into the second half of 2017 ?and beyond.

For more information click here to read the report or contact me directly: antje.witte@ucb.com.

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<![CDATA[Planting the seed of a greener global community ]]> Planting the seed of a greener global community ]]>Posted by Eric Browaeys, Belgium Site Direction.
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In addition to reducing energy consumption, UCB embraces carbon offsetting. Forests are natural ‘sinks?for carbon, absorbing tons of greenhouse gases every year. By investing in forestry, we can help to balance our overall energy impact.

Every year, forests with an area four times the size of Belgium disappear. We must reverse this trend if we are to protect the planet for future generations and meet our commitments on climate action. That is why we have signed up to support a bold new initiative in Braine-l'Alleud, where we have a strong presence.

In collaboration with Braine-l'Alleud and Graine de Vie (Seed for Life), a non-governmental organisation, we will help to plant thousands of trees in Madagascar ?a country devastated by deforestation.

Over the next 10 years, the project aims to plant a forest equal in size to the commune of Braine-l’Alleud. This represents a total of 600,000 trees which would allow the sequestration of 60,000 tons of CO2.

Not only will this offset some of the carbon produced in our neighbourhood, including by UCB, it is a positive gesture that shows the scale of action we need to take together if we are to protect the planet.

By becoming the first private company in the region to join this project, we hope to raise awareness among businesses and citizens of the shared environmental challenges we face.

This is just one of the many ways that UCB is working to have a positive impact on our communities ?both local and global. We look forward to seeing the green shoots of this initiative breathe new life into the forests of Madagascar and inspire real change in the lives of people in our neighbourhood.

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<![CDATA[Putting the spotlight on students with epilepsy ]]> Putting the spotlight on students with epilepsy ]]>Posted by Shiro Huang, Public Relations China.
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As part of a large-scale disease awareness campaign to mark 2017 International Epilepsy Caring Day (28 June), a new Epilepsy Care in Schools program was launched at the primary school affiliated to Shanghai’s East China University of Science and Technology. The initiative was hosted by the China Association Against Epilepsy (CAAE) and the Shanghai School Health Care Association with the support of UCB.

The 100 participating students had the opportunity to learn about epilepsy through interactive activities including games, cartoons and quizzes. The organizers aimed to promote awareness of epilepsy in order to eliminate discrimination, and create a sound learning and growth environment to support students with epilepsy.

Reducing stigma
Addressing epilepsy awareness is a major public health issue in China ?and globally. In fact, China was one of the proponents of a 2015 World Health Assembly resolution which called for improved public education on epilepsy and efforts to address misperceptions, stigmatization and discrimination.

Speaking at the Epilepsy Care in Schools event in Shanghai last week, Hong Zhen, President of the CAAE said children who suffer a seizure are more likely to miss school and suffer social exclusion.

Cong Haiying, vice director of the Shanghai School Health Care Association, said parents also have a role to play in informing teachers about epilepsy. Parents of children who do not have epilepsy should encourage a more open-minded approach to those affected by the condition.

Building partnership and a better future
While the task of changing public perceptions of epilepsy in China is great, much work has been done since the first International Epilepsy Caring Day ten years ago. For its part, the CAAE has worked with hospitals, schools, parents and children to support equal access to educational opportunities for young people with epilepsy.

More than 9 million people in China are living with epilepsy and the numbers are rising. Around 400,000 new cases are recorded every year. UCB is committed to playing an active role in enhancing epilepsy care in China through our partnership with Project Hope.

By complementing this with support for International Epilepsy Day, including awareness-raising initiatives for students, we aim to build a better future for people with epilepsy in China.

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<![CDATA[UCB takes the stage at International Mobile Health and Seizure Detection Congress]]> UCB takes the stage at International Mobile Health and Seizure Detection Congress]]>Posted by Erik Janssen, Innovative Solutions Mission, Neurology Patient Value Unit.
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Recent and significant advances in signal analysis and mobile technology have triggered a boom in the field of mobile health. This has prompted the development of many important applications which  can support management of, and provide value to, patients with epilepsy, including in the field of seizure detection.

In addition to providing a key-note address at the meeting, UCB colleagues will be interacting with experts from around the world, discussing some of the exciting initiatives we are currently involved with.

We will describe progress with our SeizeIT Programme, a discrete personalized epilepsy seizure detection device we’re developing in partnership which aims to provide patients and healthcare professionals with continuous remote seizure monitoring to improve management of epilepsy with a cost effective, non-invasive design.

We will share progress from the RADARs CNS (Remote Assessment of Disease and Relapse ?Central Nervous System) initiative, another public private partnership programme in which UCB  is providing epilepsy knowledge and expertise to transform patient care through remote assessment using wearable technologies such as smartphones or fitness trackers.

And, we will also be showcasing the work of partners such as Helpilepsy, a digital open platform for Neurologists and their patients which supports epilepsy tracking and management ?an initiative which was ‘born?from an epilepsy ‘Hackathon?/a> we curated in 2015.

At UCB, we are keen to be at forefront of these technologies. As world leaders in the development of anti-epilepsy medicines, our focus is on improving experiences for the millions of people with epilepsy around the world ?many of whom experience seizures that are still poorly controlled. We believe that blending new technologies with anti-epilepsy medicines could dramatically improve outcomes and experiences for patients.

In addition to showcasing current projects, we are keen to learn about new opportunities in this space, to discuss how they might provide additional value to people with epilepsy and to explore areas for future partnership and collaboration.

Everything we do at UCB is Inspired by patients, and Driven by science. In this regard, harnessing technology and innovation are crucial elements in our mission to provide maximum value to those patients who need it the most.

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<![CDATA[German coach@home: supporting patients with rheumatic diseases]]> German coach@home: supporting patients with rheumatic diseases]]>Posted by Elke Zeise, Patient Value Unit - Immunology.
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At UCB, when we say we support patients, we really mean it. Our commitment to improving the lives of people with diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, or axial spondyloarthritis inspired us to create the coach@home programme.

We know that patients can find it challenging to adapt to the diagnosis of an inflammatory illness and to follow treatment plans devised by their doctors. They often have questions and concerns, and may struggle to incorporate regular treatment into their daily routines.

The UCB Coaching Programme coach@home offers various forms of help and guidance for coping with daily treatment. This support programme has been running since June 2014 in Germany and is specifically designed for patients taking UCB medication for immunological diseases. The initiative is intended to help patients learn how best to cope with their disease, and fills a crucial gap in patient care. Currently more than 600 patients from 145 pilot centres have signed up.

Through the coach@home programme, patients receive telephone support from seven trained nurses with many years?experience to discuss any issues concerning the administration of the drug in question and treatment adherence.

These "coaches" offer practical advice on the administering the drug, provide information on handling and storing the medication, remind patients of doctor’s appointments and answer questions.

In the first year, patients are contacted eight times by phone on fixed dates. After these 52 weeks, the programme is concluded and the patient is supported in transitioning to self-management by the one of three applications: RheumaLive, AxSpALive and PsALive.

In addition, participants regularly receive information and materials reflecting their individual treatment situation and duration of treatment. A specific patient website is available to provide dietary advice, audio podcasts and web links which help ease the daily burden of dealing with rheumatic diseases and support patients in helping themselves. A patient newsletter provides seasonal recommendations such as tips for holiday planning and protection against infections.

An evaluation of the coach@home programme showed that patients appreciate the support they get from their coaches. 86% of polled patients stated that the programme was very helpful with regard to coping with the disease and administering their medication. All of those polled rated the support provided by their personal coach as very good overall. Almost all the respondents (94.3%) stated that the intensity of the support provided exactly suited them individually.

Patients?healthcare providers also benefit because the ‘coaches?provide support which might otherwise prompt them to call their doctor or to deviate from their treatment plan.

UCB identified the Net Promoter] (NPS) score as an actionable and integrated system to drive customer advocacy. The NPS of 85,2 underlines the very positive feedback we have received and motivates us to continue to offer this kind of service, which adds value for patients, to the community.

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<![CDATA[UCB welcomes the "Value of Treatment for Brain Disorder" report]]> UCB welcomes the "Value of Treatment for Brain Disorder" report]]>Posted by Jeff Wren, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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The report describes how inequality still exists between, as well as within, EU Member States, and reveals a clear need to address the equality gap throughout Europe in terms of treatment, detection and intervention. To help address this issue, it is recommended that integrated care and connected health approaches are implemented more widely across healthcare services. The report also makes it clear that improved early intervention, treatment and detection could improve survival rates, reduce complications and disability, improve quality of life and decrease treatment costs.

Interestingly, the report shows that although the Commission has invested ?.3 billion in brain research between 2007 and 2020, this amounts to just over ? per patient per year. With an ageing population, brain disorders will inevitably become more prevalent and therefore the report calls on the Commission and Member States to do more, and better, before it’s too late.

At UCB we are passionate about creating value for people with epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease, and helping them to live the life they choose.

However, we know that significant issues remain in areas such as diagnosis, access, disease control and social stigma. Whilst epilepsy can be treated very effectively with antiepileptic medication, 30% of patients live with uncontrolled seizures.  People with epilepsy might delay or avoid care due to fear, perceived low importance or social stigma.  Seizures are also often misdiagnosed, resulting in delayed treatment.

In Parkinson’s disease, non-motor symptoms, such as fatigue and gastrointestinal problems, are missed or misdiagnosed by neurologists in around 60% of consultations, and are often undeclared by patients during consultations, resulting in under-diagnosis and under-treatment.

The ‘Value of Treatment for Brain Disorders?report aligns with many issues UCB is committed to addressing, including the importance of investing in the research and development of new medicines, and exploring new approaches to managing neurological conditions.

We are working closely with stakeholders across Europe, and across the world, to explore how technology and life sciences can make a real difference by working together across the full spectrum of care - from prevention and prediction, diagnosis and clinical decision making, treatment and self-management as well as recording and reporting outcomes. By blending new technologies with breakthrough medicines, we believe we can dramatically improve outcomes and experience for patients - and we’re committed to being at the forefront of exploring these exciting next generation solutions.

To access the report please
click here and follow the conversation online using #BrainTimeMatters and #ValueOfTreatment.

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<![CDATA[Tackling epilepsy to deliver value to patients ]]> Tackling epilepsy to deliver value to patients ]]>Posted by Allyson Funk, US Communications & Public Relations.
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At UCB, we are committed to delivering value to patients and looking for new ways to help patients living with neurological diseases. One area where UCB has been working for decades is in epilepsy. While it is the most common serious neurological condition ?defined by recurrent seizures ?it manifests itself in different ways for different patients. To date, more than 100 different epilepsy syndromes have been identified.

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For patients, seizure types and frequency vary greatly. Some are short, like muscle jerks, while others are prolonged convulsions. Some patients may experience them rarely, while others battle seizures multiple times per day. Focal seizures start in just one part of the brain, while generalized seizures are the result of simultaneous abnormal activity of the whole brain. For patients battling epilepsy, regaining control ?and getting seizures under control ?is often a primary goal.

We have come a long way in treatment. Today, nearly half of patients newly diagnosed with epilepsy become seizure free with their first anti-epileptic drug. But for 1 in 3 patients, seizures remain uncontrolled because no available treatment works for them. These are the great challenges we continue to tackle. Breakthrough science and technology can help unlock better ways to care for and treat patients living with epilepsy. Whether it is helping find a therapy that works for an individual patient faster or finding new ways to treat the root cause of disease, we are committed to continuing to unlock the science and find new ways to improve the lives of patients.

For more information on epilepsy visit EpilepsyAdvocate.com.

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<![CDATA[Rheumatologists agree - partnerships for patients are key]]> Rheumatologists agree - partnerships for patients are key]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Gobal Communications & Company Reputation.
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Learn more about new UCB data at EULAR 2017:

The UCB-sponsored survey was conducted by SERMO ?one of the world’s most prominent social networks and largest pollsters for physicians, and included volunteer responses from 111 certified and verified rheumatologist members in the U.S., United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy and Spain.

When provided with a list of research topics, rheumatologists who participated in the survey considered the following to be important:
  • New potential treatment options for pregnant or breastfeeding women with rheumatologic conditions, since many currently approved treatments are either contraindicated or not recommended for use by these women (96%)
  • Radiographic and MRI imaging evidence of long-term treatment effectiveness for patients with axSpA, including AS and nr-axSpA (94%)
  • Additional treatment options for under-treated axSpA patients (66%) and options for adjusting or switching inadequate axSpA treatment regimens (47%).
Rheumatologists who participated in the survey also indicated that it is important for their patients to learn more about their diseases and treatment options. While 65% of those surveyed think their patients have an “adequate level of awareness?about their diseases and treatment options, most also think patients would benefit from additional education about these topics to help with better disease management (66%), symptom control (53%), and interactions with physicians and healthcare teams (52%).

The SERMO survey confirms that rheumatologists are pragmatic advocates for their patients and they know they need research partners who are just as committed. UCB strives to be that partner.

For the latest updates from EULAR 2017, follow us on Twitter. To learn more about UCB immunology, go to UCB.com.

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<![CDATA[UCB at EULAR 2017 - Spotlight on Scientific Innovation, Patients at Center Stage]]> UCB at EULAR 2017 - Spotlight on Scientific Innovation, Patients at Center Stage]]>Posted by Andrea Christopher, Global Communications & Company Reputation .
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With 19 presentations covering a diversity of rheumatologic diseases and patient populations, UCB emerged as a leading voice at the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology (EULAR 2017) in Madrid, Spain.

EULAR 2017 included some of our most groundbreaking research to date, reflecting our goal to make a meaningful difference for immunology patients with high unmet needs, including:
  • Important positive new data for women of childbearing age with inflammatory diseases
  • The first four-year imaging data for patients with active axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA), including ankylosing spondylitis and non-radiographic axSpA.  Findings for patients with psoriatic arthritis and its extra-articular manifestations
  • Investigational research on pipeline drugs for a variety of rheumatologic diseases.
To learn more about these UCB data at EULAR 2017, click here.

This level of UCB innovation in science is possible because we pioneer partnerships in immunology with leading researchers and physicians who share our commitment to patients. Since our founding in 1928, UCB has collaborated with partners like these:
  • The Harvard University Research Alliance, exploring the human microbiome to identify new drugs for preventing or treating immunological diseases
  • The Medical Research Council, using insights into new monoclonal antibodies to understand the mechanisms of human disease and identify novel therapeutic opportunities
  • Industry leaders like Amgen and Dermira, helping to treat post-menopausal women with osteoporosis and psoriasis patients, respectively
  • Specialists in next gen technology, developing digital platforms supporting disease management, measuring patient experience and expediting insurance approvals.
For more updates from EULAR 2017 on this spirit of partnership and how it is helping to change rheumatology today, watch UCB.com and follow us on Twitter.

To learn more about UCB immunology, go to http://www.mingzhong1.com/disease-areas/.

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<![CDATA[Harnessing science and continued research to improve lives of people with Parkinson’s ]]> Harnessing science and continued research to improve lives of people with Parkinson’s ]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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UCB-sponsored posters at this week’s International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders in Vancouver (4-8 June) show how we are supporting a broad range of research initiatives designed to help the Parkinson’s community.

Our mission is to bring patients medicines that improve their lives. We are also dedicated to researching new ways to track symptoms so that patients and their clinicians have a holistic and sophisticated view on how their condition is developing.

Parkinson’s Well-Being Map?
Several years ago, UCB introduced the Parkinson’s Well-Being Map?/a> - (WBM? a visual tool which helps people with Parkinson’s to communicate their health status with their health care teams. Taking a holistic approach, it allows patients to monitor both motor and underlying symptoms.

By using the Parkinson’s Wellbeing Map?people with Parkinson’s are supported in monitoring their condition, reviewing their motor and underlying symptoms and making the most of the consultation with their healthcare professional.

The WBM?has proven to be popular with patients but is also a powerful research tool. One of the posters at this week’s Congress in Vancouver shows how a team of scientists from the Karolinksa Institutet in Sweden monitored the symptoms of people with Idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (IPD) and Secondary Parkinsonism (SPism). Because the WBM?monitors motor symptoms and non-motor symptoms, it gives researcher a fuller view of how a patient is doing.

The study found that patients with IPD and SPism recorded more motor and non-motor symptoms than a control group. There was a trend towards more memory problems in patients with SPism compared to IPD. Importantly, the Parkinson’s Well-Being Map?was shown to be easy to fill in for all participants.

Real-time monitoring
Asking patients to record their symptoms is a valuable way to secure regular, subjective information about their well-being. However, technology is bringing new additional options for tracking movement disorders and providing objective information.

A second poster shared in Vancouver highlighted a pilot study which tests a prototype wearable patch that records motor symptoms in real time. The project is evaluating the safety, tolerability and clinical feasibility of using sensor patches to objectively, continuously measure some Parkinson’s symptoms. This work is part of
our partnership with MC10 Inc., an innovative electronics company aiming to using smart sensors to change how chronic diseases are managed.

The NIMBLE patch consists of an accelerometer and an electromyograph (EMG) sensor embedded into a flexible, conformable patch designed to measure and record patterns in movement and muscle activity.

The researchers found that the patch can be used to measure the severity of PD motor symptoms. Participants in the study found the NIMBLE patch easy to use and the information gathered was valuable in the management of their PD symptoms.

The study will contribute to ongoing refinement of the algorithm underpinning this innovative technology. As we enter the era of big data, UCB is ensuring that the full potential of this data-driven revolution is brought to the Parkinson’s community.

We were pleased to bring results of our efforts in this area to experts at the International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders and look forward to continuing to push the boundaries of innovation in neurology.

UCB is committed to identifying and addressing the unmet needs of people living with Parkinson’s disease to enable them to have a more engaged life every day.

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<![CDATA[Inspired by epilepsy advocates ?and the generosity of colleagues]]> Inspired by epilepsy advocates ?and the generosity of colleagues]]>Posted by Ian Common, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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The patient value created by the Epilepsy Foundation in Australia chimes with UCB’s commitment to meet the needs of people affected by epilepsy. That is why I was so keen to sign up for the Trek after being invited by Graeme Shears, CEO, Epilepsy Foundation of Australia.

Standing on top of the Wall, which is situated a couple hours north of Beijing and stretches for thousands of miles, is a breath-taking experience. However, the real thrill was in joining a team of dedicated patient advocates to raise much-needed funding for people affected by epilepsy.

Over AUD $5,000 was raised which was then generously matched by UCB, taking the total raised to over AUD $10,000. This, together with the incredible efforts of the other members of the ‘Trek team?brought the total raised to almost AUD $45,000.

The funds will be used to support the Epilepsy Foundation’s efforts to stop epilepsy deaths; ensure that children with epilepsy get a good education; support people with epilepsy in the workplace; and help people with epilepsy to feel safe and connected.

I was genuinely overwhelmed by the generosity, support and financial contribution of UCB colleagues, friends and family. It was an honour and a privilege to spend time with some truly inspirational people whose lives have been touched by epilepsy.

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<![CDATA[Tom Isaacs: a patient advocate who inspired the Parkinson’s worldwide community]]> Tom Isaacs: a patient advocate who inspired the Parkinson’s worldwide community]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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Tom was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease when he was just 26 years old. He became an energetic advocate for people with Parkinson’s through the Cure Parkinson’s Trust and as a board member of the European Parkinson’s Disease Association (EPDA).

Like many others, we were inspired by Tom and all that he achieved in his support for ground-breaking science and his compassion for fellow patients.

On behalf of all at UCB, I would like to extend our condolences to his family and friends.

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<![CDATA[UCB.com Suppliers' section has a new look ]]> UCB.com Suppliers]]>Posted by Sébastien Bals, Global Purchasing.
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With this in mind, we have revamped the Suppliers?section of our website to provide existing and potential suppliers with all the key information they need to play their part.

The new-look section on UCB.com clearly explains the strategy of the Global Purchasing department and our goal. It sets out our role in UCB and how our network of suppliers supports our work.

The site provides potential suppliers with information on how to work with us, and makes it easier for existing suppliers to engage with us. It puts a human face on the Purchasing department, helping to break down barriers between UCB and the constellation of innovative companies we work with.

Our hope is that the new portal is user-friendly and concise, giving you an accessible and simple entry point to a department which is crucial to the UCB’s goals.

Take a look and tell us what you think.

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<![CDATA[UCB Award highlights excellence in neuroscience ]]> UCB Award highlights excellence in neuroscience ]]>Posted by Henrik Klitgaard, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.
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Professor Pierre Vanderhaeghen at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and Professor Fadel Tissir of the Université Catholique de Louvain (UCL) will use the prize fund to support their ongoing neuroscientific research projects.

Professor Vanderhaeghen's project is entitled ‘How to make cortical neurons: mechanisms, evolution and diseases? while Professor Tissir is working on the role of the planar cell polarity genes in shaping the nervous system.

The UCB Award 2017 was presented to them by HRH Princess Astrid, Honorary President of the Queen Elisabeth Medical Foundation, in the presence of the Foundation's Board of Directors.

The prize demonstrates UCB’s continued support for cutting-edge university research in Belgium. The winners are scientists with global reputations whose neuroscientific work is fully integrated with UCB’s strategic approach to neurology.

In the domain of neurology, researchers from UCB focus particularly on the identification of new treatment opportunities for patients suffering from epilepsy and Parkinson's disease. Expanding scientific knowledge in this field improves our capacity to bring life-changing medicines to patients with serious neurological conditions.

UCB supports both fundamental and applied research in neurology and in immunology, and has strong collaborations with the academic sector. Our solid partnerships with Belgian universities helps to strengthen our own research activities at our Centre of Excellence in Braine l'Alleud.

By supporting Belgium-based researchers, we ensure that our own teams operate in an ecosystem defined by scientific excellence.

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<![CDATA[Parkinson’s disease website: More than Motion]]> Parkinson’s disease website: More than Motion]]>Posted by Erica Puntel, U.S. Corporate Communications .
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More than MotionTM is more than a website - it’s a new home for an established community.

In 2012, we introduced a new online community for the millions of people living with Parkinson’s worldwide. Since then, it has gone from strength to strength.

The project initially featured a Facebook page where people could come together to share experiences, consult experts, register for the More than MotionTM magazine, and watch videos featuring real people living with Parkinson’s. This included a reality-TV style video series showing how patients and their families are affected by this severe disease.

The name of the project was something the Parkinson’s community appreciated from the beginning. People often think of the disease as a movement disorder. Indeed, it is characterized by motor difficulties and many patients experience tremor - but Parkinson’s is much more than that.

In addition to difficulties walking or talking, many people experience problems with memory, digestion and with sleeping. At UCB, we have always taken a holistic view of how severe diseases affect people rather than focusing on a single aspect of complex conditions.

New chapter
Now, five years since this story began, we have launched the next chapter: the new desktop and mobile-responsive website that brings great content from the More than MotionTM magazine to an even wider audience. Visitors can sign up for the publication and download a digital version to their desktop.

Above all, More than MotionTM remains a community. We want families affected by Parkinson’s to share their stories with others. This can be particularly valuable for those newly diagnosed with the disease. But throughout the patient journey, we hope patients will find comfort in knowing that so many other families are living the same experiences as they are.

The site allows patients to upload their own photos, bringing them into an active support and information group from the comfort of their own homes - or wherever they may take their mobile devices.

We look forward to seeing how this community grows as it enters a new phase of its maturity. UCB is committed to supporting those  living with  Parkinson’s disease in whatever ways we can.

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<![CDATA[Core medicines driving growth in 2017]]> Core medicines driving growth in 2017]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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UCB is off to a good start in 2017, driven by growth of our main products which remain at the heart of our story.

These main medicines have gone from strength to strength, reaching more patients than ever before, and our interim report for the first quarter of 2017 confirms this trend. Our main products now represent 76% of the ?1.12 billion total revenues for the first three months of this year.

Revenue increased by 15% in the first quarter of 2017 while growth of our main products was up by 20% to ?853 million. These products are in their prime and there are other positive stories emerging from the report too. We are working with our partner to prepare to bring an osteoporosis medicine to market, while we continue to progress our promising pipeline of potential new products.

Another example from our development teams: For Japan, UCB is running a phase 3 study to evaluate the use of one of our products for psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. And we have filled one of our medicines for the use for children (above 4 years) living with epilepsy in the U.S.

In the meantime, we confirm our financial outlook for the year: UCB expects 2017 revenue to reach ?4.25 - 4.35 billion; recurring EBITDA should increase to ?1.15 ?1.20 billion. Core earnings per share are expected in the range of ?3.70 ?4.00 based on an expected average of 188 million shares outstanding.

For more information on this or related matters, don’t hesitate to contact me.

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<![CDATA[Act now to improve Patient Care in osteoporosis]]> Act now to improve Patient Care in osteoporosis]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Take a few seconds out of your day and click on the link below to make a massive difference in the lives of people suffering from osteoporosis.

Despite being a major cause of long-term disability and premature death, most people with osteoporosis remain undiagnosed and untreated. However, a new initiative by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) is now calling for global action.

Given the urgency of the situation, the IOF Global Patient Charter (www.iofglobalpatientcharter.org), in cooperation with patient societies worldwide, is seeking to drive global action for improved osteoporosis prevention and fracture patient care. You can help!

Click the link below to sign the IOF Patient Charter. It is as simple as that; it all starts with small actions by all. The more individuals sign up; the more awareness will be raised.
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<![CDATA[Signalling our commitment to partnership]]> Signalling our commitment to partnership]]>Posted by Florence Lebon, Discovery Chemistry, New Medicines.
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Professor Kobilka received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2012 for his work on G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs). GPCRs are the largest family of signalling proteins in the human genome. They are involved in virtually all physiological processes and represent the single largest target class for medicines.

Professor Kobilka is also the founder of ConfometRx, a company with unique expertise in GPCRs structural biology. UCB’s partnership with ConfometRx began in 2012 when we sealed a collaboration designed to leverage our combined expertise in structural biology and drug development.

Along with Professor Kobilka, his colleagues and several UCB researchers, I am very proud to be a co-author of a new paper describing the 3D structure of a key signalling protein.

The new paper, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, reveals the crystal structure of a GPCR known as the adenosine A2A receptor (A2AR). This receptor has been identified as a potential target for the development of new treatments for Parkinson’s disease. By studying the structure of this receptor, we observed an area which could be exploited to further develop transformational molecules (medicines).

Separately, our teams have also been working together on the crystal structure of another GPCR to further inform the design of novel drug candidates.

A true collaboration
Working with a Nobel laureate is very rewarding. The ConfometRx team are at the top of their field and the opportunity for our multidisciplinary, multi-site group of researchers to regularly engage with them was a fantastic learning opportunity.

Perhaps most gratifying was the way we worked together. This was a true partnership. Rather than simply seeing UCB as a sponsor, Prof Kobilka’s team were open to regular exchanges of ideas and in-depth discussion of results. We are peers. It is a pleasure to work with a team that are both truly excellent and exceptionally humble. This is the real measure of their greatness.

Building bridges between academia and industry is essential to translating basic knowledge into applied science. By collaborating with some of the best scientific minds in the world, UCB continues to work towards new therapies that patients need.


Scientific team members: Martyn Wooda , Tom Ceskab , Zara A. Sandsc , Joel Mercierc , Florence Lebonc
aDiscovery Biology, New Medicines. bDepartment of Structural Biology, New Medicines. c Discovery Chemistry, New Medicines.

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<![CDATA[UCB proud to #Unite with the global Parkinson’s community on World Parkinson’s Day 2017 ]]> UCB proud to #Unite with the global Parkinson’s community on World Parkinson’s Day 2017 ]]>Posted by Ana Isabel Infante, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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200 years from his seminal work, his legacy has created the foundations for a robust Global Parkinson’s and motion disorder community, #United in their passion to better understand and improve the treatment of a condition that affects millions of people around the world.

On #WorldParkinson’sDay2017, UCB is very proud to be part of the Global Parkinson’s community. To mark this occasion, individuals and organizations are being encouraged to band behind the hashtag #UniteForParkinsons on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or any other relevant social media channel, and to share messages about why they feel it is important to #UniteforParkinson’s.

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At UCB, we are very passionate about #Partnership. As a global pharmaceutical company, specialising in advanced treatments for severe conditions, including Parkinson’s, we are actively investigating how innovation and new approaches can complement our medicines to make life better for the peope who need them.

In #Collaboration with patient associations, UCB has developed tools to assist in the monitoring and recording of Parkinson’s symptoms, allowing meaningful discussions to consistently take place during consultations. By describing their personal experiences holistically, we are helping to support patients by ensuring that symptoms do not get forgotten or overlooked.

We are also #United in our belief that by harnessing innovative technology and life sciences, we can make a real difference for people with Parkinson’s.

Our patient value focus means we are committed to working together across the spectrum of care from prevention & prediction, diagnosis and clinical decision making, to treatment to self-management in order to help people continue to live valuable and productive lives.

We actively #Unite, partner and collaborate with tech giants, digital startups and word class research centres to provide them with our neurology knowledge, expertise and investment needed to kick-start new initiatives in health tech.

Through our work with partners at the forefront or wearable technology, UCB is #Uniting with them to explore how this rapidly progressing area of health tech can support doctors and their patients in providing detailed analytics information to better customise the experiences of people with Parkinson’s Disease.

UCB shares the overall goal of the World Parkinson’s Day organizers - that, by coming together for Parkinson’s, we can spread the same message on one day all over the world.

On World Parkinson’s Day and beyond, let us all continue our efforts to #Unite together and help ensure a joined up global focus on better management, improved treatment and, hopefully, one day, developing a cure for Parkinson’s.

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<![CDATA[Helping children with epilepsy in China]]> Helping children with epilepsy in China]]>Posted by Shiro Huang, Public Relations China.
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However, most people with epilepsy do not have access to state-of-the-art care. It is estimated that around 63% of epilepsy patients have not received standard therapy.

This is a huge challenge: millions of people are not getting the care they need. UCB is playing its part in improving the lives of people with epilepsy in China.

Since 2013, we have partnered with Project Hope, a humanitarian organization dedicated to improving health services and health education. Together, we have supported the Rainbow Bridge program which focuses on enhancing care for children through a series of educational initiatives.

The project seeks to improve diagnosis, treatment and access to medical specialists, while also striving to increase disease awareness and eliminating the stigma that can accompany epilepsy. The initiatives are supported by the China Association Against Epilepsy (CAAE) and the Pediatric Neurology Committee of the Chinese Society of Pediatric, Chinese Medical Association.

Real results and future plans
Project Hope and UCB have collaborated with the Shanghai Children’s Medical Center and 12 leading hospitals across China to implement the first stage of the Rainbow Bridge program.

We are proud of the impact this project has had since its launch and have agreed to extend the program for another three years, reflecting UCB’s commitment to the epilepsy community and to improving lives in China. The second stage of Rainbow Bridge will provide upgraded integrated care to more Chinese children living with epilepsy and their families.

We have seen this project make a real difference to children and their families. We have heard mothers share their stories of how they dealt with their child’s diagnosis and how the Rainbow Bridge project has been a beacon of hope for them.

Health professionals also appreciate the initiative and have told us how the program improving their understanding of the patient journey. During the first four years of the of Rainbow Bridge, 1,675 pediatricians and general physicians from 28 provinces benefited from 17 on-site neurology training sessions. This has benefited around 160,000 children.

Almost 2,000 copies of a new Pediatric Epilepsy Primary Care Training Manual have been distributed to doctors and an online medical educational module has helped physicians in remote areas to obtain the latest disease and diagnosis information. More than 17,000 clinicians have completed the only course.

Our enthusiasm for this initiative is based on strong results like this. As we embark on a new phase in the Rainbow Bridge program we look forward to continuing to have a real impact on the lives of people with epilepsy in China.

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<![CDATA[Partnering with patients to deliver true value]]> Partnering with patients to deliver true value]]>Posted by Stephen Yates, Global Clinical Development & Medical Affairs.
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CTTI is a public-private partnership whose mission is to develop and drive adoption of practices that will increase the quality and efficiency of clinical trials. In its 2016 annual report, the organisation highlighted our active leadership in developing new mechanisms to implement patient engagement strategies across the drug development life cycle.

This unique recognition reflects UCB’s ongoing partnership with patients, adapting the CTTI framework to meet our needs. “The result has been that UCB has developed a strategic vision to partner with patients at every step of the clinical development process to identify needs and inform study design and operations,?the report states.

CTTI stresses the cultural shift towards patient centricity and patient value that this has required. It highlights how our company’s strategic vision avails of all patient engagement opportunities, our focus on identifying true and actionable patient insights, UCB’s goal of delivering value to patients, and our appreciation of patients as valued partners.

We very much welcome this recognition of our work in this area. Patient value can become an empty buzzword if not followed by action. Our teams have taken this to heart: we listen to what patients want and adapt our endpoints accordingly.

Ask the patient
For example, in several clinical studies we are using a patient survey, combined with benchmarking data available from a third party, to establish a baseline for patient experience in clinical studies. This will be used to identify patient experience signals that will help us target our efforts to innovate around experience-enhancing solutions that will improve study conduct and lead to more patient friendly study designs.

While patient experience is our primary focus for this pilot, we also expect that the data will support other patient-focused ambitions such as site selection, improving recruitment and retention. Additionally, the survey provides a pathway for patients to opt-in to receive follow up study information in the form of lay summaries.

Deep-dive surveys and interviews of patients are also being used to improve our knowledge of how certain chronic autoimmune diseases affect patients. This will help our teams to understand how patients might experience the demands of participating in a clinical study.

Meeting patient goals
At UCB we are Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. It is in this spirit that we have committed to partnering with patients as part of the clinical development process. We want to deliver patient value. The only way to do this is to engage with patients at every step of the process to ensure we are working together to meet their goals.

This will allow us to bring better medicines to market faster and in a more sustainable way, helping UCB become a patient-preferred organisation in the process.

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<![CDATA[Exploring the "treasure trove" of gut bacteria]]> Exploring the "treasure trove" of gut bacteria]]>Posted by Ray Jupp,Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.
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new research describing how dozens of gut bacteria influence the immune system.

The paper, published in Cell, provides valuable insights that could eventually help to identify new therapeutics. Entitled ‘Mining the Human Gut Microbiota for Immunomodulatory Organisms? the study is the fruit of UCB and Harvard’s long-standing partnership in this exciting field.

The authors describe the gut as a “treasure trove?of bacteria, some of which influence the immune system. Of course, there are hundreds of species of bacteria living in the digestive system so it will take time ?and collaboration ?to understand the role that each kind of bacteria plays.

The new UCB/Harvard study looked at how the immune systems of mice responded to 53 individual bacterial species. It found that most of the bacteria tested play a role in the immune response. The authors say the research provides a foundation for further investigation of gut microbiota.

Collaboration and partnership
UCB and Harvard have been working together for five years to explore the role of human gut bacteria. With around 1 trillion bacteria living in our intestines, scientists have known for some time that this ‘microbiome?is an influential actor in the complex system that regulates the immune system.

Our shared hope from the outset has been to uncover new ways of strengthening the immune system or of preventing things from going wrong.

In 2015, the Harvard-UCB 'microbiome' team identified bacteria that can change the function of specific immune suppressor cells, pointing the way towards new therapies for people living with immunological diseases.

That discovery, published in the journal Science, provided a deeper understanding of how bacteria in the intestines interact with the host immune system in health and disease. The newest paper builds on this knowledge and will become the basis for future insights.

The publication of this work in top journals shows our commitment to partnering with the best scientists in the world to solve the most intriguing scientific puzzles of our time.
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<![CDATA[Celebrating 200 years of Progress in Parkinson’s Disease]]> Celebrating 200 years of Progress in Parkinson’s Disease]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Neurology Patient Value Unit.
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In 1817 his pioneering work ‘An Essay on the Shaking Palsy? established the foundations for improved knowledge, study and understanding about the collection of symptoms - tremors, rigidity and slowness of movement - which, after his death, and in recognition of his contribution, became known as ‘Parkinson’s Disease?

In the 200 years since first publication of his Essay, the global Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorder community has made some real progress in how we diagnose and treat the symptoms of this condition.

In the 1960’s, researchers identified chemical differences in the brains of people with Parkinson’s which led to the development of levodopa - one of the first medicines developed to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s. Whilst subsequent clinical and therapeutic advances still only treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease, rather than the underlying cause, many individuals, organisations and companies around the world are united in a search for a future cure.

Alongside improvements in scientific understanding, we have built an impressive understanding of how the condition can affect and impact an individual’s experience. We now know, for example, that commonly used clinical definitions of Parkinson’s Disease over-simplify a patient’s ‘lived?experience, and that to truly appreciate the challenges of living with the condition, complex physical, mental, social and emotional experiences must be taken into account. We also better understand that, by living with and experiencing their symptoms first hand, people with Parkinson’s themselves become experts in managing  their condition, and have a significant role to play in helping to progress knowledge and understanding.

At UCB, we are committed to identifying and addressing the unmet needs of people living with Parkinson's disease to enable them to have a more engaged life every day.
Whether by ensuring access to our existing Parkinson’s Disease medicines today, partnering with technology experts to explore the role of wearable technologies in supporting people with Parkinson’s tomorrow, or through continued scientific research towards discovering the next generation of medicines for Parkinson’s disease, everything we do in this field starts with a simple question: “How will this create value for people living with Parkinson’s Disease??

We are very proud to be one of the sponsors of the educational workshop hosted by the International Parkinson and Movement Disorders Society to mark this 200 year celebration.

In supporting neurologists, geriatricians, specialist nurses, neurology fellows and students, to better understand the complexity of diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson’s Disease, we hope the workshop will ultimately help people living with the condition to develop strategies to manage their daily activities and to embrace their situation with optimism.

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<![CDATA[Introducing UCB’s first Sustainability Report ]]> Introducing UCB’s first Sustainability Report ]]>Posted by Dirk Teuwen, Corporate Societal Responsibility .
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The Sustainability Report 2016 opens a new chapter in CSR reporting, setting out the principles that underlie our work and providing details of investment and sponsorship as well as gender balance and environmental initiatives.

The document is available as a printable PDF, in addition to a web-based edition. From next year, the report will be available in digital format only, thus minimising the environmental impact while ensuring that it remains available to all.

UCB is compliant with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Sustainability reporting Guidelines since 2015. This external standard for understanding and communicating sustainability issues requires companies to identify material aspects for the business. At UCB, we have identified five. We are committed to:
  • Conducting business responsibly and ethically
  • Building an agile organization to improve access to quality care for persons with severe chronic diseases
  • Accelerating environmental stewardship and sustainability across UCB’s worldwide operations
  • Providing access to epilepsy care in resource-poor countries, through active engagement in activities that improve access to care for persons living with epilepsy
  • Encouraging employee engagement in innovative and creative patient and planet initiatives.
These core drivers of our work were identified via stakeholder dialogues as the most critical items for UCB to focus on, and the Sustainability Report is designed to specifically address these topics.

You will also find details of UCB’s investments in training and community projects, as well as key measures of progress on reducing waste.

We hope this new approach to reporting makes it even easier to see UCB’s commitment to sustainability and look forward to hearing feedback from stakeholders on this new era in our CSR story.

Sustainability in numbers

Numbers








Read more on our CSR pages.

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<![CDATA[Financial results: achieving growth by delivering value to patients]]> Financial results: achieving growth by delivering value to patients]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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Our new financial report for 2016 was published today. It is packed with information about how we at UCB are doing financially, and what is coming down our research pipeline. Investors and analysts will read it in detail but let me highlight some of the big things that caught my eye.

Firstly, the report illustrates the company’s financial health. Our underlying profitability ?known as rEBITDA ?increased to one billion Euros, representing a rise of 26% (or 18% at constant exchange rates). This was driven by revenue and net sales growth, higher gross profits while our operating expenses increased only slightly.

Together with a reduction of the net debt to ?838 million, the ratio of recurring EBITDA to net debt improved to 0.8 times recurring EBITDA. Translation: we have regained strategic and financial flexibility after reducing our net debt. Our improved net debt ratio has reached a landmark we had committed to passing by 2018, so we are a little ahead of ourselves!

One thing people always look for when assessing a company is growth. As our 2016 report shows, revenue growth last year was 8%, driven by strong growth of our key products of 20%.

At the same time, we are developing novel therapies and bringing new products to market that could benefit patients into the future. For 2016, Shareholders benefit from a proposed dividend of ?.15 (gross) per share - subject to the approval by the shareholders meeting in April.

Growth and development
Speaking of growth and development, what I am personally most excited about is the new data on the use of one of our immunology medications by women with autoimmune disease who are planning to build a family.

Two phase 4 studies have recently reported positive results, CRADLE and CRIB. These results will be presented at an upcoming scientific meeting and strengthen previous data on women treated during pregnancy and the effect on their newborn infants.

Our commitment to making these medicines available to women who are planning a family and those with young babies demonstrates how we are bringing superior value to patients while delivering increased value for UCB to patients and stakeholders.

If you have a comment or question on our 2016 financial results, please let me know. As ever, I would be delighted to hear from you. For a personal meeting: in March, we are in London, Paris and Brussels on roadshow and at conferences.

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<![CDATA[Putting epilepsy in the picture on International Epilepsy Day ]]> Putting epilepsy in the picture on International Epilepsy Day ]]>Posted by Mike Davis, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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To this end, we invite you to visit the epilepsy.org website to see the winners of this year’s international art competition for people with epilepsy called, “Putting Epilepsy in the Picture.?/a>

The first thing you’re likely to notice are the incredibly powerful images of people.  One little girl from Iran stares up with intense blue eyes as goldfish, a butterfly and dark streamers float around her.  A young woman from Swaziland emerges from a swirl of bright colors to share a knowing look and a whimsical smile.  A girl from the US shines like the sun with one half sad face and one half happy face.

It’s an important reminder that this is what epilepsy looks like to those who live with it every day. It’s personal. It can be intense. It’s a different experience for each person, parent, caregiver or spouse as they struggle to maintain some distance between the person and the condition.

At UCB we acknowledge and strive to better understand both the complexity and diversity of each patients experience. As we plan for the future, we believe it will never be more important for us to dedicate an increasing amount of attention to ensuring that all patients have access to individualized solutions tailored to their individual needs, allowing them to live life at their ideal.

We will continue our work to better help connect patients and physicians with the right  treatment through our focus on unique patient segments or subpopulations and the creation of innovative clinical decision resources  that apply Big Data to help maximize patient outcomes.  We are committed to partnering across the epilepsy community  in exploring new technologies around and beyond the pill that will help patients better understand their condition and optimize their care.  For example, UCB’s Patient Relevant Innovative Solutions Mission and Patient Experience Mission are embracing exciting opportunities to work with non-traditional partners who, by approaching some of the challenges facing people with epilepsy from an alternative starting point, could improve patient experiences. Finally, we are humble in our belief that more must be done to bridge many of the gaps that currently prevent many patients from the solutions they need. We look forward to telling you more about a major global access initiative that will kick off later this year.

So this week, as you consider International Epilepsy Day, we invite you to follow the lead of the artists in this year’s contest and keep it personal. Remember the individual behind each diagnosis, prescription and claim, and our shared commitment to help each live at his or her ideal.

To that end we’d like to leave you with this quote from Molly Foote, the artist who won first prize for 12 years-old and under in the “Putting Epilepsy in the Picture?contest:

“I learned that I am barely any different from anyone else, but I have a different perspective because of epilepsy.?br>

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<![CDATA[Get your game face on!]]> Get your game face on!]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Jerry is a household name in the US where football fans were keenly anticipating this weekend’s 51st Super Bowl ?the annual finale of the National Football League (NFL). His glittering career in college football has brought him plenty of honours, including Coach of the Year in 2014. But it hasn’t always been plain sailing.

In the year 2000, Jerry had his first seizure. While he wouldn't be officially diagnosed for five years, it marked the beginning of Kill's life with epilepsy.

Today, Coach Kill is a passionate advocate for epilepsy, and even with the demands of his new position as offensive coordinator at Rutgers University, he devotes much of his time to supporting those living with epilepsy and raising awareness of the disease.

In 2016, he was presented with the Hero of Epilepsy Award from the Epilepsy Foundation. Kill frequently speaks at conferences, founded the Chasing Dreams Epilepsy Fund, and, most recently, has teamed up with UCB and
EpilepsyAdvocate on the social media campaign #TackleEpilepsy to help raise awareness of epilepsy during the football post season.

Epilepsy Advocate is a community of people living with epilepsy, their families, and their caregivers. It was created in 2006 by UCB to help connect those affected by the disease.

How to #TackleEpilepsy
The #TackleEpilepsy campaign invited you to play your part by:
  1. taking a picture of the best “game face,?/li>
  2. uploading the photo to Facebook using the hashtag #TackleEpilepsy, and
  3. tagging friends to spread awareness.

Learn more about #TackleEpilepsy and check out some of the best game faces on the Epilepsy Advocate Facebook page.

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<![CDATA[Supporting the next generation of clinician scientists]]> Supporting the next generation of clinician scientists]]>Posted by Chris Wehbe, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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These bright and highly-driven young scientists, based at the University of Oxford, come from diverse medical and scientific backgrounds. But they all share the same motivation to bring something new and valuable to patients that will improve their lives. A perfect fit then with UCB’s strategy to bring value to patients and to bring the right treatments to the right patient populations.

I asked the Fellows to explain a little about how the UCB/Oxford Fellowship works, how they got into it and what’s different about this type of collaboration.

Click here to watch the videos to hear from Fellows Drs Hussein Al-Mossawi, David Metcalfe, Stephanie Dakin and Nicholas Provine, as well as Duncan McHale, Head of Global Exploratory Development at UCB.

The Fellowships aim to train and enable the next generation of clinician scientists by providing funding for research and tuition fees, as well as providing access to mentorship, technology and expertise.

They also provide the Fellows with insights into what it’s like to work with medicines companies and help to bridge the gap between academia and industry researchers.

In turn, these scientists bring clinical and scientific knowledge together to understand the biology that causes diseases and they are vital to unlocking the next generation of therapies.

Take a look at the video to meet Dr Al-Mossawi, who is studying immune cells to understand psoriatic arthritis while practising medicine.

Dr Metcalfe, a trauma and orthopaedic surgeon, is interested in how we can improve health services to deliver better outcomes for patients.

You’ll also hear how Dr Dakin qualified as an equine veterinary surgeon and how the UCB Oxford Fellowship gives her an opportunity to explore how her know-how in horses?tendon diseases could be translated into human medicine.

And finally meet Dr Provine, who came to Oxford after completing his PhD at Harvard is now looking at how inflammation in the intestine could influence ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

The UCB Oxford Fellowships are an opportunity to break down barriers in a way that could prove beneficial to researchers, UCB and patients.

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<![CDATA[Engaged, enabled and energised for a new year]]> Engaged, enabled and energised for a new year]]>Posted by Fabrice Enderlin, Talent & Company Reputation.
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The best way to know how our teams feel about the company is to ask. That is why we run UCB Voices. This global employee engagement survey, now in its sixth cycle, is a unique chance to tap into the views of our people around the world. It is a barometer for how over 7,500 people feel about their workplace.

The study is conducted by an independent company with more than 40 years?experience in employee surveys and research. At the heart of their approach is sustainable engagement. This concept centres on employees?connection to their organisation.

The research looks at whether people feel engaged, enabled and energised. People who are engaged in their workplace make a committed effort to achieving goals; those who are enabled feel that their working environment supports productivity; and employees who feel energised have a sense of well-being.

The 2016 survey was open for two weeks between 10 and 21 October. This is a voluntary survey so the response rate is always vital to capturing a full picture of employee sentiment. Indeed, participation in the survey may itself be viewed as a marker for broader engagement.

The participation rate in the latest survey was striking. 87% of those invited to participate completed the survey ?a remarkable result and an improvement on the 78% recorded in the first survey conducted in 2011.

Equally strong was the sustainable engagement score. With a result of 86%, UCB is among the top-performing companies in our sector.

We are now analysing the detailed responses collected during the survey period to identify our strengths and areas where we can improve. As in previous years, the findings will provide clear signals about where we are and where we need to go in the years ahead.

As we look ahead to a new year, UCB is listening to its people ?and proud that they remain Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science.

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<![CDATA[A global effort to accelerate access to healthcare]]> A global effort to accelerate access to healthcare]]>Posted by France Nivelle, Corporate Communications & Company Reputation.
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This first-of-its-kind multi-stakeholder project aims to catalyze, develop, measure and replicate sustainable programs in low and lower-middle income countries. It represents an initial three-year commitment and will mobilize collective funding of $50 million, along with increased individual company programs to address NCDs.

NCDs include cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases and mental health disorders, and are the leading causes of death and disability worldwide.

UCB has a strong record in tackling NCDs of the immunological and neurological systems, such as rheumatoid arthritis and epilepsy. We are pleased to pledge support to the Access Accelerated initiative which we believe can make a significant difference to millions of lives in low and lower-middle income countries (LMICs).

Crisis point
The biopharma industry and partners are targeting NCDs because the situation has reached crisis point. These conditions account for the largest percentage of global morbidity and mortality ?60% of all deaths worldwide ?causing 36 million deaths annually. The new initiative recognizes the critical role that medicines companies can play in addressing this challenge.

Nearly 80 percent of NCD-related deaths occur in lower and middle income countries where patients face financial, regulatory and service delivery barriers. To achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target to reduce premature deaths from NCDs by one-third by 2030, action is needed.

The challenge is considerable. The risk of many NCDs rises with age. As populations in LMICs get older, the burden of many diseases will grow. At the same time, unhealthy lifestyles and under-resourced health systems threaten to exacerbate the problem.

A great deal of progress has been made in recent decades in global health and economic development. However, there is no room for complacency. Improving the health of people in LMICs has a positive impact on individuals?health while contributing to economic growth.

More than medicines
Access Accelerated is about more than medicines. Through this new initiative, we will work with partners to enhance access to medicines, improve regulations, and invest in diagnosis, screening and service delivery for NCDs.

The initiative reflects UCB’s commitment to tackling major health challenges and our continued efforts to work with partners and networks that share our goals.

The cost of inaction is too high ?it is time to act, together.

For more information, please visit www.accessaccelerated.org.

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<![CDATA[Hunt for key genes could help identify new medicines]]> Hunt for key genes could help identify new medicines]]>Posted by Roger Palframan, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.
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In collaboration with academic partners, our scientists are exploring the genetic drivers of diseases in people with rare and extreme phenotypes. A phenotype refers to a person’s characteristics or traits that result from the interaction of their genes and their environment.

This work will help us to identify pathways that are important in certain diseases ?or on the flip-side that help people to remain healthy. Ultimately, this approach may present new drug targets to treat diseases in areas where we have leading capabilities: immunology, neurology and bone.

Among the initiatives currently under way in this area are collaborative projects with Baylor, Duke and Columbia  Universities in the US and Oxford and Cambridge Universities in the UK. This research is already beginning to deliver new genes and disease mechanisms with potentially exciting opportunities to translate scientific knowledge into results for patients.

For example, the team in Cambridge has identified an individual with relapsing nodular panniculitis, a rare auto-inflammatory phenotype. Working with Professor Eamonn Maher and Dr David Komander of Cambridge University, UCB has discovered a novel gene called OTULIN that causes this potentially fatal disease.

In a paper published in Cell, a medical research journal, the team has now shown that the OTULIN gene plays an important role in a number of inflammatory and auto-immune pathways. This new knowledge could pave the way for treatments for a number of auto-inflammatory diseases.

This ground-breaking work is part of UCB’s Genetics Strategy which aims to turn science into patient value. We will continue to push the boundaries of medical science to improve the lives of people with severe diseases.

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<![CDATA[New research partnership focused on drug discovery ]]> New research partnership focused on drug discovery  ]]>Posted by Ross Carroll, Government Affairs & Market Access.
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The consortium will use antibodies ?large proteins that our immune systems use to fight infections ?to open up new avenues for small molecule drug discovery.

It’s a complex area of scientific research but by combining the experience of UCB and MRCT in antibody technologies with the University of Leicester’s expertise, we are optimistic about identifying exciting unexplored opportunities. This could make a real difference to the lives of patients with severe diseases. The consortium’s projects will be supported by scientists working at all three institutions collaboratively.

Inspired by patients, driven by science
At UCB, we are inspired by patients, driven by science. This is the spirit we carry with us throughout our work. This new consortium will develop new scientific knowledge and seek to apply this to the discovery of new drugs that patients need.

UCB has a track record of using antibodies to treat autoimmune disease ?but we are always pushing the boundaries of medical science. The approach to research that this consortium will take aims to use these large proteins to open a new gateway to identify small molecules that could one day be used as medicines.

This is the cutting-edge of medical research. ‘Antibody-assisted drug discovery?is a relatively new field which builds on world-leading complementary research expertise in the UK, covering all aspects of monoclonal antibody production, structural biology and fragment screening.

Combining the expertise of these three leading institutions could lead to a step change in knowledge-based drug discovery and highlights the benefits of a public-private sector partnership approach to future drug discovery.

This is a hugely exciting new venture which we hope will deliver new science and new medicines in the years ahead.

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<![CDATA[UCB research partner wins Life Sciences Breakthrough Prize]]> UCB research partner wins Life Sciences Breakthrough Prize]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
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Professor Zoghbi is one of our valued research partners and leads a strategic research programme at Baylor College of Medicine in the US. Together we are exploring how the exciting area of functional genetics can be harnessed to identify therapeutic targets for new medicines. Her team, in collaboration with our researchers, aims to discover medicines based on genetically validated targets that could transform the lives of people living with severe neurodegenerative diseases.

The Breakthrough Prize ceremony ?sometimes called ‘The Oscars of Science??is well attended, attracting a host of celebrities, philanthropists and researchers. The prize was founded in 2013 by Sergey Brin and Anne Wojcicki of Google, Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan of Facebook, Yuri Julia Milner of Digital Sky Technologies, and Jack Ma and Cathy Zhang of Alibaba.

More than $25 million is awarded to excellent scientists whose work is making a real difference to humankind. The life sciences prize honours transformative advances towards understanding living systems and extending human life. Professor Zoghbi was recognised for discoveries of the genetic causes and mechanisms of spinocerebellar ataxia and Rett syndrome. She is now using the same approach to study Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.

UCB is pleased to see this work recognised at the highest level. It reflects our commitment to work with world-class researchers in pursuit of progress in medical science. We will continue to collaborate with top scientists who share our desire to improve the lives of people with severe diseases.

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<![CDATA[Our revamped website ?share your thoughts]]> Our revamped website ?share your thoughts]]>Posted by Nathalie Vandenbruaene, Global Communications and Company Reputation.
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The decision to revamp the site was made after a survey highlighting strengths and weaknesses of the previous version of UCB.com. On the plus side, the research found that the website was strong and complete, serving different target audiences.

However, we also learned that users found it a little complex and tricky to navigate. Visitors prefer a more visual online experience and our new site seeks to address that need too.

The conclusion, after studying the survey results, was that it was time for UCB.com to evolve. We have worked to make its structure much simpler and to make the user experience even better.

The new site follows the latest trends in web design, offering a more intuitive journey through the information we provide. We have applied a clear design ethic in every section of the site, creating a sense of unity between different areas ?from information about diseases and products to company news and scientific insights The tone of voice used throughout the site is also more consistent with UCB’s philosophy.

You can also browse our content according to your own needs. Whether you are a health professional, a patient, an investor or a job-seeker, there is a section for you.

So, the big question: have we succeeded?

Please take a few minutes on the site and let us know what you think.

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<![CDATA[2016 UCB Family Epilepsy Scholarship awarded]]> 2016 UCB Family Epilepsy Scholarship awarded]]>Posted by Kristie Madara, US Corporate Communications.
We are delighted to announce the recipients of the 2016... ]]>
UCB Family Epilepsy Scholarship. These grants support the educational goals and aspirations of 40 people in the United States impacted by epilepsy.

Epilepsy is a chronic neurological condition affecting approximately 65 million people worldwide. Over the past 12 years, we have awarded nearly 400 hundred scholarships totaling $1.9 million (?.79 million) to people whose lives have been directly affected by epilepsy. This includes not only those living with epilepsy, but also their family members and others involved in their care, who are critically important partners in successfully managing epilepsy.

We are excited to have the extraordinary opportunity to help motivated and outstanding students from across the United States achieve their academic goals. We look forward to seeing how these students will continue to spread epilepsy awareness in their communities of higher education.

A committee of healthcare professionals and EpilepsyAdvocates?selected this year’s 40 recipients from more than 500 applications based on personal excellence, community achievements and determination to overcome seizures that interrupt daily life. Recipients received scholarships of $5,000 (?,700) to use toward tuition to pursue higher education in undergraduate or graduate programs, or technical school.

This year, two of the scholarship recipients received $10,000 (?,400) Epilepsy Leader Scholarship, honoring the late Sandra Helmers, M.D., M.P.H. and the late John M. Pellock, M.D., trailblazers in epilepsy research and treatment and members of the UCB Family Epilepsy Scholarship selection committee who both passed away earlier this year.

For more information about applying for the 2017 UCB Family Epilepsy Scholarship Program? please visit www.ucbepilepsyscholarship.com.

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<![CDATA[Wearable seizure detector aims to give epilepsy patients more control ]]> Wearable seizure detector aims to give epilepsy patients more control ]]>Posted by Kasper Claes, Analytics Services.
UCB and partners from academia and industry are collaborating on the development of... ]]>

The SeizeIT consortium hopes to deliver a prototype wearable device in the next two years. The detector will record and measure seizure activity in real time, allowing for better follow-up and individualised treatment plans.

SeizeIT is a two-year public-private partnership, funded by Flanders and Brussels. The group will work with around 200 patients to test and validate the device.

Team members bring a range of skills from product design and algorithm development to sensor technology and clinical evaluation. For our part, UCB will provide market access knowhow with the potential to bring the resulting device to the epilepsy community, and in addition contribute to medical, mathematical and hardware aspects.

Technological innovation
The proposed system aims to incorporate brain and cardiorespiratory activity sensing, vastly improving performance compared to the solutions currently available.

The prototype of this wearable seizure detection system will give epilepsy patients greater control over their daily lives.

Epileptic syndromes and seizures can vary significantly from person to person. Understanding seizures can help guide health professionals in controlling patients?seizures.

The project was launched because experts believe that existing devices for seizure detection in epilepsy patients could be improved upon.

Equipment that measures brain activity to detect seizures is often obtrusive, and solutions that use other signals, such as heart rate alone, are often not sensitive enough to provide useful insight into seizure activity patterns.

Technological innovation is at the forefront of this drive towards individualisation of care in epilepsy. This is vital to improving the experience of people with epilepsy.

As a company with a long history and deep expertise in the area of epilepsy, we are pleased to play our part in this exciting new chapter in epilepsy innovation.

“Building a partnership with a unique combination of expertise around a true unmet need in epilepsy, namely unpredictability and considering patient heterogeneity from the beginning, is the way forward to help give patients back control over their life" explained Erik Janssen, Head of Innovative Solutions Mission.

Should you want additional information, please contact Kasper.Claes@ucb.com.

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<![CDATA[UCB’s Chief Information Officer wins "CIO of the Year"]]> UCB’s Chief Information Officer wins "CIO of the Year"]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
Herman De Prins, Chief Information Officer at UCB, has won the "CIO of the Year" award. The prize, awarded by...]]>

Herman is responsible for the IT infrastructure used by our 7700 employees and his team delivers around 250 projects every year. Although UCB is considered to be a medium-sized player in the pharmaceutical sector, our CIO always thinks big. He continues to look at new initiatives in exciting and fast-moving areas such as artificial intelligence.

In an interview with Data News to mark the award, Herman praised the culture at UCB which values the role of technology in delivering on our promise to improve the lives of people with severe diseases. UCB is willing to invest in state-of-the-art information technologies that will fuel innovation and keep pace with our peers.

There is great scope for digital initiatives when it comes to working with doctors, academics and other partners. Further, when it comes to patients UCB continues to explore digital initiatives that can deliver value within the patient eco-system.

For example, we have been working in Big Data to support clinical decisions for people with epilepsy. In this sense, UCB is an ‘early adopter?of promising big data and artificial intelligence technologies.

We are also working to use analytics to identify patients that would benefit from medication and to tap into the potential of machine learning ?an area which Herman is particularly excited about.

Looking ahead, he sees a growing role for high-quality apps that help doctors choose the right medicine for the right patient, and believes advances in information technology will make it easier for smaller and medium-sized companies to create value for patients and society while spending less on technology itself.

“Yesterday was digital, social and mobile,?he says. “Today more and more it is all about artificial intelligence.?br>
We are delighted that Herman’s talent has been recognised and look forward to seeing him realise his vision for the future.

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<![CDATA[UCB Spain wins award for epilepsy initiative]]> UCB Spain wins award for epilepsy initiative]]>Posted by Jesus Sobrino, UCB Iberia.
UCB has won a prestigious award for an innovative project designed to raise...]]>

The prize was presented at the 2016 EFPIA Health Collaboration Summit in Brussels on 9 November. The event was hosted by the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA).

EFPIA_award_1










Willy Cnops and Xavier Hormaechea receiving the award in Brussels on behalf of UCB

The awards, established by EFPIA and the Patient Think Tank in 2015, aim to share best practice in multi-stakeholder collaborations that benefit patients and healthcare systems.

UCB was recognised for the project ‘To Live with Epilepsy?(Vivir con epilepsia), an innovative initiative that raises awareness of the disease and tackles social stigma in Spain. Around 400,000 people in Spain are directly affected by epilepsy but knowledge and understanding of the condition remain low.

The project features a specially designed website focused on epilepsy to enhance public knowledge about it and share patients?experiences. By creating a digital community on epilepsy we helped to bring the patient voice to the centre of epilepsy conversations.

The site has a blog which is a useful way to build a strong and loyal community of patients and health professionals. The initiative also includes a Facebook page to reach out to patients living with epilepsy, and a Twitter channel for reaching health professionals.

The project helped to normalize the disease among the public and to reduce stigma and social exclusion. The website received more than 66,000 visits from 54,000 unique users.

This is not the first time ‘To Live with Epilepsy?has been recognised as an innovative initiative. It was named ‘Best Social Health Awareness Campaign?by Publifestival in 2015 and won the Solidarity Category prize at the Diario Médico Best Ideas Awards in Spain. We are delighted to add this European award to the project’s growing list of accolades.

We would like to thank all the partners who worked with us on this successful project and look forward to playing an active role in improving the lives of people with epilepsy in Spain and around the world.

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<![CDATA[Putting the patient at the centre of healthcare]]> Putting the patient at the centre of healthcare]]>Posted by Audrey Saluzzo, Communications France.
UCB is Inspired by Patients. Driven by science. We apply the latest in scientific knowledge to improve the lives...
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Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. We apply the latest in scientific knowledge to improve the lives of people with severe diseases. Delivering value to patients is always at the forefront of our work.

That is why we are supporting a new research Chair at Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3 in France focusing on what “value?really means in patient-centred care.

This prestigious Chair was inaugurated at an international workshop on the value of patient-centred care which took place on 19 and 20 October in Lyon. The event attracted leaders in healthcare, bringing together health professionals, patients, managers and health researchers.

The initiative, co-founded by UCB, is an opportunity to restore patients to their rightful role at the heart of the health system. It is a recognition of the importance of building healthcare models around the patient ?for ethical and economic reasons.

The Chair provides the impetus for an interdisciplinary and international examination on the meaning and value of patient-centricity. It will look at how the role of the patient has evolved in health systems in various countries while considering how new trends ?such as personalised medicine ?would shape the future of patient-centred care.

The Chair is co-directed by Jean-Philippe Pierron, Director of the Graduate School of Philosophy and Didier Vinot, University Professor and Vice-President for Economic and Social Affairs and Heritage.

As part of a nine-year research programme, researchers will examine the role of patients in France, the United States, China and Mexico, drawing on expertise from philosophers, sociologists, psychologists, historians and economist. Throughout this work the focus will remain on one major theme: value.

UCB welcomes the breadth of this academic project which promises a thorough and holistic analysis of the value of patient-centricity.

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<![CDATA[UCB continues to grow]]> UCB continues to grow]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
UCB’s revenue for the first nine months of 2016 show the company continuing on its growth path driven by growth of our...]]>

Our nine-month interim report, released today, confirms our financial outlook for 2016 trending towards  the upper end of the range. Translation: we are continuing to execute well and deliver on our targets.

As we head into the home straight of FY 2016, we expect - trending towards the upper end of the ranges - annual revenue to be approximately ?4.0 - 4.1 billion. Recurring EBITDA should increase to approximately ?970 - 1 010 million. Core earnings per share are expected in the range of ?2.90 - 3.20 based on an expected average of 188 million shares outstanding.

This is driven by growth in sales of our main products. Net sales of our top four products combined reached net sales of ?2.3 billion (+12%).

The interim report is also an opportunity to provide an update on our product portfolio and news from our research and development pipeline.

Our epilepsy product portfolio has grown in the EU, North America and Japan. Meanwhile, US authorities have accepted UCB's filing for a proposed new indication for our top immunology product to treat juvenile idiopathic arthritis.

We are also giving patients new ways to deliver our medicines. The European Medicines Agency has given a positive opinion on the use of the AutoClicks] prefilled pen for the administration of UCB’s treatment for autoimmune disorders. Our researchers are also studying the impact of our products on patients with psoriasis.

There was more good news from a phase 3 research program on the treatment of osteoporosis, including the filing in the U.S. The first positive results from these studies are inspiring UCB and our partner to continue to make preparations to bring the medicine to people with osteoporosis.

For more information on our research pipeline and more, click here to read the report or contact me directly: antje.witte@ucb.com.

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<![CDATA[Osteoporosis fractures: why once is enough]]> Osteoporosis fractures: why once is enough]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Communications British & Irish Isles .
October 20th is World Osteoporosis Day - a chance to raise awareness of a condition...]]>
th is World Osteoporosis Day - a chance to raise awareness of a condition that can cause significant pain and reduce people’s quality of life.

Like other chronic diseases, such as hypertension and hyperlipidaemia, osteoporosis is typically asymptomatic until a fracture occurs - thus it’s often called a "silent disease".

However, from that moment on, the impact of the fracture is felt: broken bones can result in severe pain, significant disability and even mortality.

It is estimated that 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men over the age of 50 will experience an osteoporotic fracture and once that happens the risk of further fractures increase.

Consider the statistics:
  • After a fragility fracture, an osteoporosis patient is 5 times more likely to suffer another fracture within a year.
  • After a fragility fracture, nearly 1 in 4 women will experience another within 5 years.
  • Nearly half of all hip fracture patients suffered a prior fragility fracture.
So as you can see, the first fracture should be taken as a warning sign. It should lead those at risk to talk with their doctor to determine whether they have osteoporosis and if they are at risk for future fractures.

Unfortunately, as documented by the International Osteoporosis Foundation, many “hospitals and clinics fail to "capture" that first fracture - leaving patients open to a future of suffering and debility?

The World Osteoporosis Day campaign calls on people to be proactive and fight this silent disease. You need to take action and protect your bones!

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th is World Osteoporosis Day - a chance to raise awareness of a condition...]]>
<![CDATA[More than medicines]]> More than medicines]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Value Unit - Neurology .
At UCB, we are working to develop and deliver medicines that improve quality of life for people with severe diseases. But our...
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I have just returned from the 4th World Parkinson’s Disease Congress in Portland, Oregon. This important event provided us with an opportunity to showcase our holistic approach to the disease.

One of the posters we presented focused on the findings of the STEPTM research*,  initiative which helps to understand the full lived experience of Parkinson’s disease. This, in turn, can improve patient outcomes by addressing what matters most to them. (Read more here)

The research finds that the prevailing clinical definitions can over-simplify the complex reality of life with PD. It puts greater emphasis on understanding the more complex physical, mental, society and emotional aspects of the condition.

The response we received from attendees at the WPC was inspiring and confirmed that we are taking the right approach.

Many of those who stopped to chat with us about our STEPTM poster  were caregivers working in patient support programs or caring for family members living with PD.

Their feedback was overwhelmingly positive, with several people saying that this classification chimes with their experience of the disease: “This is profound,?said one woman who is a caregiver and works with people with Parkinson’s.

It was heartening to hear such a warm reaction to our work. Some were actually surprised that the initiative had been sponsored by a pharmaceutical company; they asked whether UCB would continue to support this kind of "atypical" research.

The answer is "yes". We remain fully committed to supporting patients and improving their lives - whether that means bringing them medicines that alleviate symptoms, raising disease awareness, finding novel ways for patients and health professionals to communicate, or moving medical science forward.

This is what it means to be Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science.

STEP?is a registered trademark of the UCB Group of Companies. © 2012 UCB, Inc. All rights reserved.
This research was conducted by Idea Couture, a Cognizant Digital Works company.

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<![CDATA[Innovative wellness program for rheumatoid arthritis]]> Innovative wellness program for rheumatoid arthritis]]>Posted by Donna Finale, Patient Value Unit - Immunology.
People with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are at higher risk for cardiovascular and...]]>
Wellness 4U activity tracker - a pilot programme that encourages healthy behaviours.

Wellness 4U is a comprehensive, web-based health and wellness programme that uses a wearable activity tracker to help promote physical activity and better nutrition for patients diagnosed with moderate to severely active RA.

The initiative is kicking off with a 50-patient pilot programme at two US sites - one in Houston, Texas and the other in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Patients participating in the project wear the Garmin vivofit 2 on their wrist to track their activity. They also participate in an online community via a web-based platform, www.wellness4u.com, throughout the programme.

In addition to self-monitoring their steps and sleep using the activity tracker, patients also receive ongoing education, motivational activity cards, and healthy cooking tips to set goals and ensure successful completion of the 90-day programme.

This innovative project is the first of its kind in RA and is designed to address unmet needs in the doctor’s office.  While physicians regularly remind people with RA about their elevated risk of cardiovascular events and muscle wasting - emphasising the importance of exercise and eating well - patients find it challenging to consistently make healthy choices.

When we learned that people with RA need more support, it inspired us to think of how we could give them the regular feedback they need to help stay well.

This initiative fits with our commitment to find new ways to improve the health and lives of patients in whatever way we can. We hope that the Wellness 4U proves successful and could be extended to more patients when the pilot is complete.

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<![CDATA[Accelerating our collaboration with Georgia Tech]]> Accelerating our collaboration with Georgia Tech]]>Posted by Kristie Madara, US Corporate Communications.
UCB is building on its partnership with...]]>

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UCB cuts the ribbon at the UCB Solution Accelerator at Georgia Tech.
From left to right:  UCB Advocate Lakeisha P., UCB Executive VP of Neurology
Jeff Wren, Georgia Tech President G.P. "Bud" Peterson and UCB Advocate Chris M.


The initiative makes UCB the first pharmaceutical company to establish an innovation center in Technology Square and strengthens our presence in the greater Atlanta area ?UCB’s North America Headquarters is located in Smyrna, Georgia, a suburb of Atlanta.

This significant collaboration is an opportunity for UCB colleagues to tap into Georgia Tech’s state of the art machine learning and advanced analytics resources. Together we will strive to improve patient care as well as the patient experience by harnessing the power of new technologies.

Regular readers will know this is not the first step in our partnership with Georgia Tech. We have launched several collaborative initiatives including a project designed to use big data to benefit epilepsy patients.

The new ‘Solution Accelerator?is a natural extension of a partnership that has flourished in recent years. It places UCB in the heart of a vibrant innovation community where we can grow, learn and explore new ways to deliver for patients with severe diseases.

In fact, the beauty of being co-located with Georgia Tech in Technology Square is the potential for new ideas to emerge from disciplines outside the areas in which we have an established reputation ?neurology and immunology.

We look forward to welcoming researchers, faculty and students from the Georgia Tech community to collaborate with our team.

Our experience of collaboration and open innovation tells us that sometimes the best ideas come from interactions between experts from different fields. By making a strong commitment to partnering with cutting edge researchers, the Solution Accelerator in Atlanta has the potential for sparking valuable innovations that push the boundaries of modern medicine.

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<![CDATA[Addressing the unmet needs of people living with Parkinson’s disease]]> Addressing the unmet needs of people living with Parkinson’s disease]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
People with Parkinson’s disease live with a...]]>

However, this is the not the full story. People with PD also experience many other non-motor symptoms which impact their daily lives, sometimes in ways that are just as important to them as the classical motor symptoms.

At the 4th World Parkinson’s Disease Congress in Portland, Oregon, this week, UCB is presenting two posters that look at PD in the round.

Findings from the STEPTM research conducted in the UK, US and Canada help to better understand the full lived experience of Parkinson’s disease. Based on insights from patients and their caregivers, this work can help to improve patient outcomes by addressing what matters most to them.

The research finds that clinical definitions can over-simplify the full experience of PD, at the expense of understanding the more complex physical, mental, society and emotional aspects of the condition.

The STEP?research illustrates the unique lived experience of Parkinson’s, and is designed to give voice to people living with the condition in a way that better incorporates the broad impact of Parkinson’s on a person’s life, relationships and sense of self.

These evidence-based insights support the development of solutions for people living with Parkinson’s, addressing the condition’s multiple dimensions beyond just symptom control.

STEP insights are of major importance to UCB to providing innovative solutions for people living with Parkinson’s.

More than motion
A separate UCB-funded poster explores coping strategies used by people living with PD. It draws on the insights from the More than Motion?Facebook community where people with PD, caregivers and healthcare professionals can connect, find information and share experiences.

The project identified 113 coping strategies and categorised them into several topics. ‘Exercise/physical activity?(35%) and ‘Attitude/spiritual coping?(35%) were the most commonly used strategies. This initiative identified a strong appetite among the PD community for information about coping strategies with the potential to improve their quality of life.

Holistic view
UCB is committed to identifying and addressing the unmet needs of people living with Parkinson’s to enable them to have a more engaged life every day. That is why we support research that takes a holistic view of improving the lives of people living with the disease, and share this knowledge at conferences like this week’s WPD Congress in Oregon.

It is an area we have been active in for several years, helping to establish ourselves as a strong supporter of Parkinson’s research, dedicated to adding value for patients. For example, we developed the Parkinson’s Well-being Map to help patients track their symptoms and prepare for consultations with health professionals.

We look forward to continuing our partnership with those affected by Parkinson’s disease as well as the scientists and health professionals working to find innovative ways to curb its impact.

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<![CDATA[UCB researchers target back pain]]> UCB researchers target back pain]]>Posted by Tina Bornemann, Global Clinical Science & Operations.
Back pain can be severely debilitating. It can make it difficult to work, exercise and...]]>

There can be many reasons for back pain but one condition that can cause serious discomfort is axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA), a chronic inflammatory disease that affects the spine and the joints connecting the lower spine and hips.

Symptoms include significant inflammatory low back and/or buttock pain that persists for more than three months. The pain and stiffness associated with axSpA can limit daytime activity but also disturbs sleep.

The disease affects roughly the same proportion of the population as rheumatoid arthritis but awareness of axSpA is low. As a result, it is believed to be underdiagnosed. While medicines can relieve the pain, swelling and other symptoms, axSpA has no cure.

At UCB, we see this unmet medical need as a challenge to be overcome. Our immunology researchers are dedicated to finding ways to address axSpA and relieve symptoms such as back pain.

UCB is currently running a clinical study in this area that tests one of UCB’s existing medicines in patients with axSpA. If you’d like to know more about this study and how to participate, you can visit this website.

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<![CDATA[UCB and Yale collaborate on brain scanning project]]> UCB and Yale collaborate on brain scanning project]]>Posted by Henrik Klitgaard, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.
Scientists from UCB and Yale University have used a novel approach to scan...]]>
Science Translational Medicine journal.

Chemical synapses allow brain cells to form circuits within our central nervous system. Changes in these synapses are associated with numerous brain disorders, including epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease.

The team, which included UCB scientists Joël Mercier and Jonas Hannestad, developed a novel radioactive tracer [11C]UCB-J that binds to an important protein found at the synapses and can be detected by positron emission tomography (PET) to measure the number of synapses in the living human brain.

The synaptic protein in question, SV2A, plays a role in regulating the release of certain brain chemicals. It was first discovered during the work that led to the development of one of UCB’s established epilepsy medicines.

This new brain imaging technique is a major advance in its own right. Previous studies have only been able to look at synaptic density after patients have died. What’s new about this work by UCB and Yale scientists is that the team were looking at the living brain in human subjects for the first time.

The implications of this research could be significant. The study demonstrates how a non-invasive method can be used to follow the progression of many brain disorders, including epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease, by measuring changes in synaptic density over time.

This offers health professionals a window on the brain health of their patients which was never possible before. Doctors could now have the opportunity to track any changes in synaptic density over time or to assess whether medication is slowing down the loss of brain cells.

It also potentially opens the door to earlier intervention if doctors observe the early signs of brain disorders and can prescribe suitable therapies.

The project is a great example of how UCB is collaborating with the best minds in science to advance medical knowledge that could have future benefits for people with serious brain disorders.

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<![CDATA[UCB marks China’s annual 'Epilepsy Care Day']]> UCB marks China’s annual ]]>Posted by Shiro Huang, Public Relations, China.
Epilepsy affects millions of people in China. UCB is playing its part in improving patients?lives and our company supported...]]>

This is the 10th year UCB has supported the China Association Against Epilepsy in its efforts to increase disease awareness, improve care for people living with epilepsy and eliminate the stigma surrounding the disease. Events were held in 46 hospitals in 100 cities, reaching 15,000 patients and their caregivers.

A special event was hosted by Project Hope at the Shanghai Children's Medical Center. It’s part of the ?a href="http://www.mingzhong1.com/magazine/article/Giving-back-to-epilepsy-patients-worldwide" class="" target="_blank">Rainbow Bridge?Epilepsy Children Care Program, one of UCB’s key CSR initiatives in China.

Continued commitment
However, epilepsy is a chronic disease and a once-a-year awareness day cannot meet patients?huge needs for reliable up-to-date information on diagnosis and treatment. That’s why UCB is exploring new ways to create value for epilepsy patients in a sustainable way.

Taking advantage of the boom in digital healthcare services in China, UCB has collaborated with the China Association of Health Promotion and Education to launch a digital disease education platform, called ‘Carnation?on a popular social media channel.

Through this platform, patients learn about the disease, treatment and nutrition. They can search for epilepsy specialists and attend online patient education sessions as well as interacting with physicians.

20 hospitals across the country have established a partnership with the ‘Carnation?platform. More than 1,000 patients or their caregivers have already been reached and we expect to hit 5,000 patients by the end of this year.

Online consultation
Due to China’s large epilepsy population, it can be difficult for patients to register in a hospital or see the right physician. To help solve this problem, UCB is collaborating with WeDoctor, a digital healthcare service, to set up a platform for online consultations.

The first consultations have already been held. Professor Hong Zhen, Chairman of the China Association Against Epilepsy, and five epilepsy specialists from Shanghai Huashan Hospital joined the online session and provided services to more than 200 patients and their caregivers in a single day.

Our colleagues in China are hoping to share these best practices with more hospitals to benefit growing numbers of patients in China.

We see a long-term role for UCB in helping to improve the lives of people in China living with epilepsy. Our continued support for this annual awareness day, along with the other events outlined above, are a demonstration of that commitment.

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<![CDATA[Setting sail for better Parkinson’s care]]> Setting sail for better Parkinson’s care]]>Posted by Raymond Nieuwland - Patient Value Unit, Neurology.
5 UCB employees set sail at the Sail4Parkinson regatta in... ]]>



The UCB crew were aboard a Lemsteraak, a traditional Dutch sailing ship, which took in several IJsselmeer cities including Hindeloopen, Workum and Stavoren. There were 11 boats in all and more than 100 participants in the event which took place on May 27.

Our support for this initiative reflects our ongoing commitment to improving the lives of people living with Parkinson’s disease in the Netherlands and around the world.

Currently there are 50,000 patients with Parkinson’s disease in the Netherlands and it is expected that this number will rise to 75,000 patients within 10 years. It is estimated that 6.3 million people are living with the disease worldwide.

By participating in Sail4Parkinson we are supporting scientific research and new innovations for people with Parkinson's disease. Sail4Parkinson is co-organised by UCB with the Dutch organisation ‘Point for Parkinson? a centre of expertise in Groningen for people living with Parkinson’s disease.

Point  for Parkinson is an innovative initiative which brings together Parkinson's care services from the Martini Hospital, Groningen University Medical Center Groningen and Care Group. This approach delivers the highest levels of care, education and science.

UCB collaborates with Point for Parkinson on several patient-centric projects and educational meetings, working towards our shared goal of helping people living with Parkinson’s disease to regain control of their lives.

The regatta was a great way to raise funds which will be used to support the research and development of new innovative treatments for Parkinson’s disease.

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<![CDATA[UCB continues to deliver on its growth strategy]]> UCB continues to deliver on its growth strategy]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
It’s steady as she goes here at UCB despite the conditions outside. Our financial... ]]>

We are meeting capital markets?expectations of a  steady first half of the year; a reassuring source of calm in the face of troubling external events.

The Half Year Report confirms the financial outlook for 2016 with revenue expected at approximately ?.0 ?4.1 billion, recurring EBITDA of ?70 - ?,010 million, and Core Earnings Per Share in the range of ?.90 - ?.20.

In the first six months of 2016, we continued our patient value strategy which aims to deliver superior value to patients and shareholders. Revenue and net sales increased by 5% and 15 % respectively reaching ?2 billion and ?1.9 billion respectively, driven by net sales of our core products.

18% higher underlying profitability (recurring EBITDA) of ?49 million reflecting continued net sales growth and a lower operating expenses ratio. Profit for the Group amounted to ?16 million, a plus of 9%, of which ?00 million is attributable to UCB shareholders.

We are also growing our epilepsy portfolio with the ongoing launch of a new treatment option in the EU and North America and an approval in Japan. We continue the preparations with our partner to bring a potential new drug to people living with osteoporosis and at the same time we are moving forward our promising early pipeline to deliver future breakthrough solutions for patients - to drive future growth.

New Mobile IR App ?stay tuned wherever you go
You can now stay up to date with all the news and data from our Investor Relations?team using a new mobile app. This move is part of our ongoing effort to bring you the information you need in a format that suits you.

The IR app provides you with all relevant information including a download center for HY and Annual Reports as well as press releases and presentations, stock-related data and videos, audiocast conference calls and more. Content posted on the Investor Relations section of the UCB.com website will immediately be available through the app. Download it from the Apple Store or from Google Play if you are using an Android device, and follow the next chapters in the UCB story.
Please share your feedback on this new service so we can continuously improve our offerings to you ?love to hear from you! (antje.witte@ucb.com).

Wishing you a quiet summer break ?enjoy life! See you again in September at multiple occasions in London, New York and perhaps Atlanta.

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<![CDATA[Discover how Virtual Reality blurs lines between our lab teams and IT people]]> Discover how Virtual Reality blurs lines between our lab teams and IT people]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.

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The video below showcases how UCB IT professionals are helping to reshape the way we do drug discovery.

Fascinated? ucb.com/ITcareers

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<![CDATA[Football stars boost UCB epilepsy campaign]]> Football stars boost UCB epilepsy campaign]]>Posted by Jesús Sobrino, UCB Iberia.
Spanish football club Atlético Madrid is helping to raise awareness of...]]>

Now in its sixth year, Getting to know epilepsy makes us equal, has become a valuable school-based initiative for normalising epilepsy among children.

It offers teachers and students the skills they need to handle seizures and aims to reduce stigma by promoting dialogue and understanding. More than 80,000 children have been reached since the programme was launched.

This is the second year that the Atlético Madrid Foundation has added its voice to promote the idea that children with epilepsy can live normal and active lives, which include playing sport.

In this video, Belgian international Yannick Carrasco who plays for Atlético, plays football with a group of children ?some of whom have epilepsy. It was shown to football fans in the stadium during a pre-match warm-up session and at half time. The message is clear: an epilepsy diagnosis is not a barrier to exercise or participation in team sports.



A press conference was also held on 28 April at a school ahead of an Atlético game to publicise the campaign.

The initiative is spearheaded by UCB Iberia and has been a great success. A total of 131 media reports on it have been recorded, reaching an estimated audience of 26 million. A huge social media campaign has also been rolled out with support from Atlético and Carrasco who have 2.2 million and 150,000 social media followers respectively.

The project has picked up a number of prizes including a Best Ideas Award from a specialised health newspaper and recognition from the Spanish Neurology Society.

Around 65 million people worldwide are affected by epilepsy. This includes six million people in Europe, of which 400,000 are in Spain. The disease can occur in people of all ages but, of the 20,000 news cases diagnosed in Spain last year, at least half were recorded during childhood or adolescence.

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<![CDATA[How a rare bone disorder inspired osteoporosis researchers]]> How a rare bone disorder inspired osteoporosis researchers]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Communications British & Irish Isles.
By any measure, the story behind UCB’s...]]>
osteoporosis is remarkable. It features a rare genetic bone disorder, a major collaborative research effort, a space flight and ?we hope ?will ultimately help relieve some of the burden of bone fractures suffered by millions of people.

Let’s start at the very beginning. In 1958, a research paper described the cases of two South African girls with rare bone disorder. Their condition, which led them to have large, abnormally dense bones and other symptoms, became known as ‘sklerosteose?or sclerosteosis.

Several decades later, with medical research techniques having improved dramatically, the SOST gene was discovered. This gene, which codes for sclerostin, was connected to the sclerosteosis reported in the South African cases decades earlier. It transpired that those were cases of insufficient sclerostin production.

Further research linked sclerostin to bone fragility: when too much sclerostin is produced by the body, bones are more fragile and the risk of fracture is greater. This means that if the action of sclerostin could be reduced, bones could become stronger.

Collaboration and clinical trials
UCB and Amgen have been collaborating to explore the science behind bone biology and to test a new monocolonal antibody which essentially  binds to, and inhibits, sclerostin.

Bones are constantly being remodelled, balancing bone building and bone resorption. Most existing drugs for osteoporosis seek to reduce bone resorption. The antibody we have been working on with Amgen seeks to increase bone formation and decreases bone resorption.

This antibody ?which saw UCB and Amgen partner with NASA to explore its role in redressing the bone effects of space flight ?has been in clinical trials for several years. The latest results, reported at the ENDO 2016 conference and covered in a recent edition of Nature, are encouraging.

There is more work to be done before this antibody could become available to patients with osteoporosis ?a disease which causes 9 million bone fractures per year. However, this area of research stands as an excellent example of UCB’s willingness to learn from nature and partner with others on a fresh approach to tackling severe diseases.

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<![CDATA[Prestigious award for UCB’s top finance officer]]> Prestigious award for UCB’s top finance officer]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
UCB’s Chief Financial Officer, Detlef Thielgen, has been named CFO of the Year by Trends Tendance, a leading business...]]>
Detlef Thielgen, has been named CFO of the Year by Trends Tendance, a leading business magazine. This is welcome recognition for a team which plays a vital role in UCB’s success.

Detlef














From the left to the right: Laurent Schots, Detlef Thielgen, France Nivelle

Detlef, who began his career in banking, has been in his current role for almost a decade. During this time, he has led a finance team that has overseen a period of progress and growth at UCB.

This skilled and motivated group even scaled the dreaded ‘patent cliff??a period when patent protection expires on leading products, prompting an abrupt loss of revenue ?which has challenged many companies in our industry.

Looking back on this successful but nonetheless hectic period, Detlef borrows a sporting analogy to explain his team’s performance. “If you want the best team and the best players, you must ensure that you make it worthwhile for them to play for you,?he told Trends Tendance in an interview.

Finance is more than just a numbers game. Our finance team is embracing new technologies in their field such as advanced data analysis and cyber security to deliver crucial insights. Curiosity and a willingness to learn are as a central to UCB’s finance operations as they are to our drug development labs.

Our talented group of finance experts has been a constant, steadying influence in the past and promises to be a dynamic part of our future.

For people like Detlef, UCB’s research on the next generation of therapies is of professional and personal interest. As he said in a recent interview, UCB’s efforts to develop an innovative new therapy for osteoporosis are inspirational as it has the power to change lives.

“My mother has osteoporosis. Her hips have broken and she has already broken two vertebrae. If our product reaches the market it could potentially help her greatly. So we do our job in finance because it plays a role in improving people’s lives.?b>

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<![CDATA[Survey highlights workplace discrimination against people with epilepsy]]> Survey highlights workplace discrimination against people with epilepsy]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Communications British & Irish Isles.
Epilepsy is the world’s most common...
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Epilepsy is the world’s most common chronic neurological condition but it is still widely misunderstood in the workplace. A new survey reveals the challenges faced by people with epilepsy and should inspire us all to do more to overcome stigma.

The YouGov poll conducted in the UK found that one in four employees (26%) would be concerned about working with a colleague who had epilepsy. Of those, the majority (63%) said their worry stemmed from not knowing how to help a co-worker suffering from a seizure.

This lack of knowledge and understanding may be unsettling but also shows there is great scope for addressing the stigma around epilepsy.

The need for action is urgent. Around 65 million people have epilepsy worldwide. It is especially prevalent in early childhood, in people over 65 and in old age ?but can affect people of any age.

Improving lives
Raising awareness in schools, colleges and businesses is essential if we are to improve the daily lives of people living with epilepsy.

The key misunderstandings emerging from the new survey centre on seizures. According to the YouGov survey, three quarters of participants (76%) had never been offered training on what to do if someone were to have a seizure at work.

Perhaps what they fear most is the unknown.

Epileptic seizures can come in many forms and can be hard to recognise. Given the prevalence of epilepsy, information campaigns and training could be of significant benefit.

Training and support
Workplace discrimination against people with epilepsy runs deep. According to the Epilepsy Society, a UK patient group, people with epilepsy are twice as likely to be at risk of unemployment compared with the general population.

Patient advocates are calling for better workplace training to help epilepsy sufferers to feel safer and more supported at work ?and to give their colleagues the confidence to intervene in the event of a seizure.

Employers too could benefit from learning more about the condition and may be more open to recruiting people who have epilepsy if they understood the disease in more depth.

People with epilepsy can face many challenges in controlling symptoms, maintaining relationships and living a normal life. Let’s do all we can to ensure that they do not face needless obstacles to entering and thriving in the workforce.

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<![CDATA[Epilepsy project wins "Most Valuable Patient Initiative or Service Award"]]> Epilepsy project wins "Most Valuable Patient Initiative or Service Award"]]>Posted by Cynthia Dilley, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
A collaborative initiative by UCB and the...]]>
collaborative initiative by UCB and the Epilepsy Foundation, a US patient advocacy group, has won an award at the 2016 eyeforpharma conference in Philadelphia.

The epilepsy project, which was designed to reveal the factors associated with improved seizure control and reduced hospitalizations, was named ‘Most Valuable Patient Initiative or Service?

It delivered real results with the potential to improve patient outcomes. Researchers examined the health insurance records of 17,743 people with epilepsy to examine the risk factors for hospitalization in this large group of US patients.

Results of the study, which were published in the scientific journal Epilepsy & Behavior, showed that several factors including use of newer antiepileptic drugs and access to specialty care were associated with improved outcomes for people living with epilepsy.

Based on the data, state-by-state scorecards were released that assess each state’s utilization of newer AEDs and the availability of care from a neurologist in comparison to other states.

This inspiring initiative aimed to raise the standard of epilepsy care by identifying potential barriers and the opportunities for improvement.

At UCB we are proud that our efforts to improve the lives of people living with epilepsy have been acknowledged and will continue to collaborate with others who share our commitment.

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<![CDATA[UCB is committed to improving the lives of people with lupus]]> UCB is committed to improving the lives of people with lupus]]>Posted by Andrea Levin, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
Every day, more than five million people...
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Today, on World Lupus Day, we take the opportunity to acknowledge the challenges faced by people with lupus ?and to salute the efforts made by those working to raise awareness and bring innovative solutions to this underserved population.

Lupus is a potentially fatal autoimmune disease which can affect multiple organ systems including the skin, joints, kidneys, brain, blood, heart and lungs. Common symptoms include fatigue, fever, joint pain, skin lesions and chest pain.

Patients often develop a characteristic butterfly-shaped rash across their cheeks and nose. Additional symptoms may be present depending on the organs affected.

Patients usually experience alternating periods of remission—during which disease activity is low and symptoms may ease—and periods of high disease activity known as flares, when symptoms worsen. During flares, the immune system attacks healthy tissue causing inflammation that can lead to organ damage.

The goals of lupus treatment are to suppress the overactive immune system, reduce inflammation, control symptoms, prevent flares and minimise damage to organs.

The majority of those affected are women aged 15-44. The disease is more common in women than men, and two to three times more common in women of color than in Caucasian populations.

In general, people with lupus have an increased risk of mortality, and live with debilitating symptoms and manifestations that often significantly diminish their quality of life. As a result, they face significant psychosocial issues, including maintaining steady employment.

World Lupus Day was first observed in 2004. Since then, activities on World Lupus Day aim to heighten public awareness, improve patient healthcare services, increase research into the causes for and a cure for lupus, and better epidemiological data on lupus globally.

UCB is committed to playing its part in improving the lives of those affected by lupus, on World Lupus Day ?and every day.

Learn more about lupus.

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<![CDATA[UCB wins Human Resources Award]]> UCB wins Human Resources Award]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
Fabrice Enderlin, Chief Talent Officer & Company Reputation, UCB, has been named HR Manager of the Year by...]]>

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Together, this 160-strong global HR team manages 7,700 people, 70 nationalities, in 30 countries using more than 20 languages to create a truly international atmosphere.

HR‘s role in creating the right environment is significant so we are delighted to see our colleagues honoured with this award.

A company is only as good as its people. Getting the right people with the right skills and bringing these individuals into a team with a shared purpose is a great challenge.

More than 80% of employees express pride in their work at UCB ?higher than the global benchmark for our industry ?the company has an engagement rate of 83%.

Fabrice and his team are responsible for recruiting hundreds of people per year and integrating them into our global company. Their task is to find people who can be Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science and to instill a pride in what we do here at UCB.

The team must also keep one eye on the future. As the world of work is changing, UCB looks for exceptional people with the skills required to take a collaborative approach to solving our shared problems.

UCB’s goal is to create value for patients. To do this, our HR team creates an environment where people can express their talent; where they can innovate as individuals and play a vital role in an innovative company. This innovative culture is at the heart of what we do.

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<![CDATA[Continuing our growth path in 2016]]> Continuing our growth path in 2016]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
The growth of UCB’s main products is driving our continued growth in 2016...]]>
  • The growth of UCB’s main products is driving our continued growth in 2016,
  • topline results from our clinical research programs show promise in the treatment of osteoporosis and
  • we now have 9 attractive projects in our early pipeline.
  • These are among the highlights of our company’s three months interim report of 2016 which also confirms the financial outlook for the year.

    Our report shows revenue for the first three months 2016 of ?91 million, an increase of 11% (or 9% at constant exchange rates). Net sales of our main products are up 15%, totaling ?14 million in net sales.

    We do expect continued growth this year with 2016 revenue reaching approximately ?.0 billion - ?.1 billion. Recurring Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (rEBITDA) are expected to increase to approximately ?70 million - ? 010 million. REBITDA is considered as an indicator of a company’s underlying earnings performance and, in this case, highlights UCB’s healthy growth. Core earnings per share for 2016 are expected in the range of ?.90 - ?.20.

    Our product portfolio available to patients is growing, with approvals in the EU and the US of our new epilepsy medicine.

    Looking a little further down the line, first results from the phase 3 program with our osteoporosis drug showed very promising results in reducing incidence of new vertebral fractures in postmenopausal women. Topline results of another study showed the compound is also effective in raising bone mineral density in men with osteoporosis.

    Further results are expected next year and we are encouraged by the potential of this product to improve the lives of women and men living with osteoporosis.

    This new molecule is not the only one with the potential to expand our portfolio. Our attractive early pipeline now encompasses nine different potential products. We will continue to invest in science, research and development to deliver future breakthrough solutions for patients.

    What does our 3 months interim report tell me? Well, it shows me we are on target for 2016 and off to our growth path ?as expected. If you would like more details on any of the above or beyond, do not hesitate to get in touch Antje.Witte@ucb.com.

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    <![CDATA[Exciting research could provide hope for autoimmune condition]]> Exciting research could provide hope for autoimmune condition]]>Posted by Colin Ewen, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.
    We often think about Diabetes as a purely...
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    Type 1 diabetes (T1D) accounts for around 10% of all diabetes cases and is characterised by a lack of insulin production in the pancreas. This occurs because the immune system kills the cells in the pancreas that make insulin.

    There is currently no cure for Type 1 diabetes, and patients are treated by administering insulin to control their blood glucose levels.  Over many years, poor glucose control can lead to severe complications such as kidney, nerve and eye disease.

    UCB’s commitment to addressing the unmet needs of patients suffering from severe diseases and our  expertise in immunology has led us to start research into T1 and since December 2014, we have been collaborating with Professor Mark Peakman of King’s College London to test a potential new diabetes therapy which could halt/slow down the destruction of insulin-producing cells in the pancreas.

    The new potential therapy, called Multipeptide, is based on an area of research referred to as “peptide immunotherapy?  Multipeptide uses fragments of proteins to stop the body attacking the cells that produce insulin. It aims to tolerize or ‘switch off?the inflammation and thereby prevent further damage to the pancreas.

    The hope is that the person receiving this treatment will not deteriorate further, and thus avoid or delay long-term complications such as deterioration in kidney function or eyesight.  This hope has led some to refer to this next generation of immunotherapy as  "therapeutic vaccines".

    When we think of vaccines, we usually think of prevention. For example, they prevent us from catching infectious diseases such as measles or whooping cough which are caused by viruses or bacteria, by preparing the body to make antibodies to the virus/bacteria. But in this case, a therapeutic vaccine could be used to halt the deterioration of a disease by stopping immune cells producing antibodies that are targeting the bodies?own proteins.

    In the future we hope to better characterize this new potential therapy and the effects it has on patients suffering from T1D.  For now, we are in the earliest stages of a clinical trial to be conducted on a small number of patients at Guy’s Hospital London.

    The new immunotherapy treatment was developed by researchers at King’s College London backed by funding from the Wellcome Trust, and is being taken forward in partnership with UCB.

    While it is still early days, we are hugely excited about this collaboration. It demonstrates our willingness to work with partners to solve some of the biggest health challenges facing the world ?and it keeps us at the cutting edge of immunology.

    It is the latest example of what we mean when we say we are Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science.

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    <![CDATA[UCB’s commitment to enable people with Parkinson’s to live engaged, full, active lives on World Parkinson’s Day]]> UCB’s commitment to enable people with Parkinson’s to live engaged, full, active lives on World Parkinson’s Day]]>Posted by Ana Isabel Infante, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
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    Article co-authored by Erik Janssen, Patient Value Unit ?Neurology, Pierandrea Muglia, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines, Martin Citron, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.

    Across the world there are over 6.3 million people living with the Parkinson’s disease (PD) ?a chronic and progressive movement disorder. The cause of the condition is unknown, and the experience of living with Parkinson’s varies considerably from one person to another.

    Individuals experience different symptoms beyond movement, such as sleep disturbance, pain and anxiety which can impact their lives significantly. Although there is currently no cure, there are treatment options and management approaches that may enable people with Parkinson’s to maintain their mobility and independence, and live active and productive lives.

    At UCB, through our patient-inspired, science-driven approach, we’re committed to providing innovative solutions for people with Parkinson’s.

    We understand that people with Parkinson’s and their families need to figure out how to deal with their own experience of PD, and the extent to which this can be hindered by the complexity of the treatment ecosystem - which varies greatly by country depending on healthcare systems and support services available. We know that as the condition progresses, patients struggle to maintain their independence. We also know how important maintaining a full and active life can be for people with Parkinson’s.

    With this in mind, UCB’s focus is to support the global Parkinson’s community to develop approaches and solutions that help meet individual needs in a tailored and holistic way, providing people with confidence, reassurance and the ability to cope with their condition when they face moments of doubt. We understand the importance of allowing people with Parkinson’s, as well as their loved ones, to maintain their sense of self.

    UCB has adopted an ‘outside-in?approach in order to deepen our understanding of real-life experiences of people with Parkinson’s. We have worked together with a variety of partners to co-create solutions with the ultimate aim of achieving motion freedom. For example:
    • Alongside six of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies, and Parkinson’s UK, one of the world’s largest charity funders of Parkinson’s research, UCB is an active member of the Critical Path for Parkinson’s Disease group. This ground-breaking consortium is focused on designing disease modification trials for Parkinson’s, and has the endorsement of an independent scientific committee. Together we are engaging with regulatory agencies in both the US and EU to accelerate the pace ?and reduce the costs ?of getting Parkinson’s treatments to the market.
    • We have partnered with Tubingen University to identify biomarkers to help in early diagnosis and tracking progression of Parkinson’s disease. Through this earlier identification, we hope to extend the window of treatment which could allow for more personalized and targeted treatment strategies with the goal of improving management.
    • We have also collaborated with the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) to conduct preclinical research on alpha-synuclein, a key protein involved in Parkinson’s. The goal of the project that started two years ago is to identify the best targets for blocking the progression of the disease.
    • Our company is actively involved in exploring potential new treatment options for Parkinson’s. In conjunction with our partner, Neuropore Therapies, we are investigating a novel potential treatment for Parkinson’s disease which, whilst at a very early stage, in the future could offer patients a new disease modifying treatment, beyond symptom control.
    • In addition, we are also collaborating with the cutting edge technology firm MC10 Inc. to explore how biosensors can bring new solutions to empower people with Parkinson’s.
    UCB pledges to continue working closely with the global Parkinson’s community to help develop and improve solutions for people living with Parkinson’s. On World Parkinson’s Day, we reaffirm our commitment to enabling people with Parkinson’s live engaged, full and active lives. We urge others to share our commitment.

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    <![CDATA[Bringing epilepsy care closer to patients ]]> Bringing epilepsy care closer to patients ]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Communications British & Irish Isles.
    An innovative initiative designed to bring epilepsy care closer to patients has won a prize at the Eye For Pharma awards...]]>

    This unique collaboration was one of two UCB-backed projects to be recognised at an event which highlights “valuable and innovative patient-centric initiatives?

    The collaboration in question was a ground-breaking partnership between Epilepsy Scotland, NHS Dumfries & Galloway and three pharmaceutical companies including UCB.

    The initiative supported the provision of epilepsy education and training to doctors, nurses and learning disabilities staff. It also raised awareness of epilepsy and provided information to a wide range of staff on rescue medication and non-clinical management during seizures.

    Through this project, Epilepsy Scotland was empowered to provide specialist epilepsy nursing services for three days per week for three years. The initiative helps to provide patient-centred care and to improve services.

    More than 1,200 people in the area benefited from the project which demonstrates a new model for epilepsy care. It has illustrated how patients can avail of specialist care without having to travel long distances for routine hospital visits.

    Prior to the launch of the project, an audit of services in Dumfries and Galloway highlighted improvement areas in service provision. The study found that only 39% of patients had ever been given information about common seizure triggers. Around half of those surveyed had never had a specialist epilepsy review and 44% had no care plan.

    The project could inspire the rollout of similar services to other parts of Scotland and has been presented to Members of the Scottish Parliament.

    The other UCB project to win an award was also designed to improve the lives of epilepsy patients. ?a href="http://www.mingzhong1.com/patients/magazine/article/UCB-wins-award-for-%E2%80%98Hack-Epilepsy%E2%80%99-initiative" class="" target="_blank">Hack Epilepsy?brought together developers, designers and digital experts, along with healthcare providers and patients to imagine new ways of applying digital technologies that can make a real difference for the epilepsy community.

    We were delighted to see these initiatives recognised for their commitment to innovative patient-centred partnerships.

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    <![CDATA[UCB wins award for 'Hack Epilepsy' initiative ]]> UCB wins award for ]]>Posted by Erik Janssen, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
    UCB’s innovative ‘Hack Epilepsy?initiative has won an award at the Eye For Pharma Barcelona Awards 2016...]]>
    Hack Epilepsy?initiative has won an award at the Eye For Pharma Barcelona Awards 2016.

    Marianne










    Marianne Fraiture at eyeforpharma for Hack Epilepsy

    We are delighted to see this unique project recognised at this event which highlights “valuable and innovative patient-centric initiatives?

    Hack Epilepsy brought together developers, designers and digital experts, along with healthcare providers and patients to imagine new ways of applying digital technologies that can make a real difference for the epilepsy community.

    'Hackathons' are an increasingly popular way to apply fresh thinking and creative design to complex problems.

    The goal of Hack Epilepsy was to come up with practical and workable solutions that answer four broad challenges, including accessing effective support and reliable information, empowering people to talk about their epilepsy, and knowing what questions to ask following diagnosis.

    Two hackathon events were held simultaneously in Brussels and Atlanta, and delivered 17 concept  prototype digital solutions.

    About half of the Hack Epilepsy prototypes continue in development with some start-ups in the making. UCB continues to support some promising Hack Epilepsy projects.

    It was great to see Hack Epilepsy  win the Customer Innovator Award, but what was perhaps most gratifying was the fact that three of the five finalists in this category were UCB initiatives.

    At UCB, we put the patients at the heart of everything we do. We constantly look for new ways to improve patients?lives and move healthcare forward. To be recognised as a leader in patient-centric innovation inspires us to continue working with others to find original ways to add value to patients.

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    <![CDATA[Super Networks - powering progress in the fight against neurodegenerative disease ]]> Super Networks - powering progress in the fight against neurodegenerative disease ]]>Posted by Roger Palframan, UCB New Medicines.
    Modern medicine must solve complex...]]>

    Our scientists are working with Imperial College London to unlock the secrets of epilepsy genetics, with Weill-Cornell Medical College to understand neuronal cell loss, with Harvard on the relationship between gut bacteria and the immune system, with a Nobel Prize winner to study G-protein receptors ?and many more besides.

    We are pleased to add another new partnership to our impressive network. UCB and Baylor College of Medicine in Texas have launched a strategic alliance in neurodegeneration.

    It’s the latest example of how we are building a Super Network of partnerships to tackle the big challenges in modern medicine.

    This research alliance will be led at Baylor by Huda Zoghbi, professor in the Departments of Pediatrics, Molecular and Human Genetics, Neurology and Neuroscience.

    She will collaborate with UCB’s high-quality R&D teams to discover medicines based on genetically validated targets that could transform the lives of people living with severe neurodegenerative disease.

    Professor Zoghbi and her collaborators have world leading capabilities in using functional genetics to identify therapeutic targets for new medicines.

    The research programme fits with our strategy to focus on the discovery of drugs targeting pathways with a high level of genetic and human validation.

    It also fits with our commitment to pair our expertise in drug development with insights from patients and the latest medical science. We will continue to work with the very best scientists and clinicians to improve the lives of patients.

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    <![CDATA[UCB products are delivering value to patients ]]> UCB products are delivering value to patients ]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
    All of us at UCB are committed to delivering value. That means value to patients whose lives are improved by our medicines... ]]>

    After a busy good year ?and a hectic few weeks preparing this report (next to some "other" news items like an approval in the US for our new epilepsy drug and positive phase 3 results for our new osteoporosis drug - can't ask for more) ?we are delighted to be able to share with you the details of our 2015 financial results and the financial outlook for 2016. I believe it contains many examples of the value that our company provides.

    Upon reading the report, it is clear that our innovative products are driving growth and delivering strong earnings. We also believe that, thanks to recent regulatory approvals in Europe and the US, and a strong research pipeline, the future is looking bright.

    Let’s start with some of the key figures from the report. Revenue for 2015 was ?.88 billion which was 16% higher than the previous year. Net sales were ?.51 billion, up 20% on 2014.

    2015 saw underlying profitability (recurring EBITDA) 35% higher than the previous year. This was due to higher revenue and a lower operating expenses ratio.

    Profit for the Group was ?74 million ?compared to ?99 million in 2014 ?and includes the gain arising from the sale of Kremers Urban. ?23 million (after ?09 million) of this profit for the group is attributable to UCB shareholders. Core earnings per share was ?.17 while gross dividend per share is proposed at ?.10.

    The financial outlook for 2016 is for further revenue growth. Revenue is expected to be between ?.0 and ?.1 billion, recurring EBITA of between ?70 million and ?010 million, and core EPS in the range of ?.90 and ?.20.

    Next week we will be in London and are looking forward to our continued dialog with our shareholders and investors. This will be followed by meetings and conferences in Paris and Brussels later in March.

    An analyst recently told me that for him every year, our FY results event is the kick-off for spring. I like this! As a gardener, I can tell: can't wait to go through the garden gate.

    If you have a comment or question on our 2015 financial results, please let me know ?love to hear from you ?including exchanging ideas on how to banish my "tenant" in the garden: a family of root voles. I appreciate your advice: Antje.Witte@ucb.com.

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    <![CDATA[Patients like UCB's Parkinson's Well-Being Map™]]> Patients like UCB]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
    At UCB, we strive to improve the lives of people with severe diseases. In addition to...
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    <![CDATA[UCB marks International Epilepsy Day]]> UCB marks International Epilepsy Day]]>Posted by Mike Davis, Seizure Freedom Patient Value Mission.
    Monday, 8 February, is International Epilepsy Day ?a time to acknowledge the huge impact the disease has...]]>

    An estimated 65 million people have epilepsy worldwide. Around half of newly-diagnosed patients are seizure-free with their first anti-epileptic drug.

    However, one third of people with epilepsy live with uncontrolled seizures despite having tried over three medications.

    Each year on the second Monday of February people join together to bring awareness to the impact of epilepsy on those living with the condition, as well as their families and carers.

    This year, International Epilepsy Day, which is a joint initiative by the International Bureau for Epilepsy (IBE) and the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE), will focus on public education.

    As the recurring theme of International Epilepsy Day suggests, improving the lives of people with epilepsy is about ‘more than seizures?

    Some of the best entries from a photography competition entitled Yes I can will be on display at the European Parliament in Strasbourg ?helping to put the issue of epilepsy care and research on the political agenda.

    At UCB, we support the epilepsy community by focusing on three key areas:
    • Unlocking the match of the right solution for the right patient at the right time
    • Decreasing the time to seizure control and 
    • Addressing the current gap in solutions for patients.
    With an outside-in approach to deepen our understanding of the lived experience with epilepsy and to co-create solutions together with patients, UCB aims to partner with patients along the journey to seizure freedom.

    Visit our Epilepsy section

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    <![CDATA[New 'toolbox' will boost patient education]]> New ]]>Posted by Daphnee Pushparajah, Patient Affairs.
    For patients to play an active role in how medicines are developed and regulated, they need to be equipped with...]]>

    EUPATI is a five-year multi-stakeholder project funded through the Innovative Medicines Initiative. It brings together European leaders in patient communities, universities, not-for-profit organizations and pharmaceutical companies.

    UCB is an industry partner of the project which seeks to take the mystery out of drug development. Patients have an important stake in medical research and can offer valuable insights on what is important to people living with diseases. Providing them with training and information can help pave the way for greater patient engagement in health-related projects.

    EUPATI has just launched a new educational toolbox on medicines research and development. The online resource allows users to freely discover, adapt and share a wealth of material. It is a comprehensive educational resource with more than 3,000 topics covered in seven languages.

    
The EUPATI initiative has previously launched a Patient Expert Training Course designed to support patients with information and knowledge. This valuable training scheme will produce 100 patient experts by 2017.

    The new online toolbox makes educational material available to a much wider audience of patient representatives, individual patients and anyone with an interest in medicines R&D.

    Armed with the information provided by this new resource, EUPATI is helping to build a critical mass of informed patients who can make a meaningful contribution to discussions on drug development and patient advocacy.

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    <![CDATA[Protecting privacy in a data-driven world]]> Protecting privacy in a data-driven world]]>Posted by Peter Keohane, Privacy and Data Protection.
    Data is everywhere in modern medicine. Big data promises to transform epilepsy care...
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    Big data promises to transform epilepsy care, clinical researchers are generating valuable information about medicines, and healthcare professionals are using electronic records to manage their patients in a smarter way. Investigating new therapies through genetic research is one of our newest ?and perhaps most promising ?endeavours.

    28 January is Data Privacy Day ?an international awareness initiative designed to promote data privacy education. Originally designed to encourage vigilance among younger people sharing personal information online, the day is now relevant to all of us. The educational focus has extended to families, consumers and businesses.

    As a company dedicated to finding new treatment options for severe diseases UCB has many interactions with patients, health professionals and the wider public through market research, assistance programmes and adverse event reporting. And when it comes to research data, UCB is committed to transparency while safeguarding individual patient privacy.

    We have clear principles for our employees involved in collecting, processing, storing and sharing personal data. This is essential to complying with our legal obligations, but also to meet the expectations of the people with whom we interact.

    This year’s Data Privacy Day comes at an important time. A new privacy law in the EU - the General Data Protection Regulation - is expected to receive formal approval by the EU Parliament within the next three months, marking the first major shift in European data privacy regulation since 1995. As a European company headquartered in Belgium, UCB will be subject to these new regulations, which will have implications for data-driven research, clinical studies, and personal data as a whole.

    This year will also see UCB fully adopt a new set of privacy compliance standards called Binding Corporate Rules. These will provide guideposts to ensure we meet legal obligations and public expectations.

    Data can be a powerful tool but, like any source of power, must be used, shared and protected wisely. UCB’s commitment is to endeavour to get the most out of the opportunities that lie ahead while protecting and respecting privacy.

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    <![CDATA[Unlocking the secrets of epilepsy genetics]]> Unlocking the secrets of epilepsy genetics]]>Posted by Rafal Kaminski, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.
    What are the genetic factors behind epilepsy and how does it develop?...
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    By taking a ‘systems genetics?approach to answering these questions, researchers from Imperial College London and UCB have identified networks of genes that may govern epilepsy, memory and perhaps even intelligence.

    A new paper published in the journal Nature Neuroscience reports that two networks of highly connected genes may be the key to understanding the complex way in which the brain functions.

    These networks may be controlled by a common ‘master?system that influences some of the traits that set humans apart from other species.

    The new paper is already having an impact. It has been widely reported by the media and is among the top-ranked papers of its kind.

    This is just the latest outcome of our collaboration with Imperial College. Last year, Nature Communication a high-impact research journal, published findings from the same research team showing that a single gene coordinates a network of around 400 genes involved in epilepsy.

    Our work in this area continues to deliver new insights into molecular and genetic underpinnings of neuro-
    developmental diseases. Ultimately, this could help us to find drug targets. Perhaps we could identify molecular switches that control the networks of genes we have identified.

    We move forward with many more questions to answer but with a sense of real excitement about the discoveries that may lie ahead.

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    <![CDATA[New epilepsy treatment demonstrates UCB's leadership]]> New epilepsy treatment demonstrates UCB]]>Posted by France Nivelle, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
    Here at UCB we pride ourselves on playing...
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    The onus is on leaders to take responsibility for solving difficult problems in their areas of expertise and we never shy away from a challenge.

    We are not satisfied with the status quo; we listen to the epilepsy community and strive to tackle the unmet medical needs highlighted by patients and health professionals.

    One of the biggest challenges in epilepsy is the large number of people whose symptoms are not well managed. It is estimated that more than 30% of the 65 million people worldwide with epilepsy are resistant to treatments currently available.

    When we see the profound impact successful therapy can have on people living with epilepsy, it inspires us to redouble our efforts to bring the same benefits to those for whom current medicines are ineffective.

    By investing in science, UCB constantly searches for innovative treatments that would give patients and health professionals more tools for tackling seizures.

    This requires time and, of course, financial commitment. Not every promising compound makes it from the lab to the patient. In fact, most potential new treatments do not clear all the clinical and regulatory hurdles required.

    That is why it is so satisfying to see our newest epilepsy drug, BRIVIACT] (brivaracetam), given the green light by the European Commission after receiving a positive recommendation from the European Medicines Agency.

    BRIVIACT] is approved as an adjunctive therapy in the treatment of partial-onset seizures with or without secondary generalization (spreading to both sides of the brain after the initial seizure) in adult and adolescent patients from 16 years of age with epilepsy.

    This welcome news offers more treatment choice for people with epilepsy and illustrates UCB’s commitment to playing a leadership role in the epilepsy community.

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    <![CDATA[Turning data into treatments for rare diseases]]> Turning data into treatments for rare diseases]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Communications British & Irish Isles.
    Next generation sequencing (NGS) allows scientists to understand our DNA like never before. It has the potential to improve...]]>

    Whereas the Human Genome Project took years to complete and cost billions of euro, NGS is dramatically quicker and cheaper. This exciting technology is opening the door to a much deeper understanding of the human genome.

    When the Human Genome Project was launched, the technical challenge of mapping the genome was enormous. However, that hurdle has now been cleared and NGS is generating large amounts of data.

    The challenge now is to make sense of all of this information. To do this, we need to be able to move from statistics to analytics and from data to knowledge, analysing and interpreting NGS data in a manner that allows us to make informed decisions on what might, or might not, be a relevant target or mechanism to pursue.

    To further out work in this area, UCB is supporting a rare disease research project with Congenica, a leading developer of genome analytics and clinical interpretation technologies. This partnership brings together the power of NGS with UCB’s drug discovery capacity.

    UCB’s goal is to transform this insight into first-in-class therapies that dramatically benefit the lives of patients with unmet medical need in our core therapeutic areas of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, and diseases of the Central Nervous System.

    Through this project, Congenica and UCB hope to make significant advances that will positively impact patients?lives.

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    <![CDATA[Partnering with patients is key to innovation]]> Partnering with patients is key to innovation]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
    At UCB, we want to develop innovative medicines that are valued by patients. That is why we work with people who have...]]>

    After all, we can develop the most innovative medicines in the world but if they do not reach patients, no good comes from that.



    This recently-aired segment on ‘The Balancing Act??a morning show broadcast on the Lifetime network in the US ?highlights some of the challenges faced by people with epilepsy, as well as the role of UCB in finding solutions.

    As Susan Axelrod, founder of Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy (CURE), explains, 30% of epilepsy patients are not responding to current treatments. More options are clearly needed.

    Greater awareness and earlier diagnosis can also help to improve care for people with epilepsy. Susan’s own daughter had her first seizure at just seven months of age but waited 18 years for diagnosis. Now, aged 34, she has been seizure-free for 15 years. These are the kinds of success stories we want to be part of.

    The show also features the testimonials of two patients who share the stories of how they are dealing with their condition. In both cases, after a difficult start, these patients now have their epilepsy under control and are living full and active lives.

    At UCB, we listen to patient experiences and this informs our research and development, as well as the patient initiatives we support. From establishing an online epilepsy community to working with seizure response dogs, we are committed to playing our part in the epilepsy community.

    We are Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. By embracing patient-inspired science, we are also connecting with academics, health professionals, governments and others to ensure that we all play our part in delivering better quality of life for people with epilepsy.

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    <![CDATA[UCB and Epilepsy - an ongoing commitment ]]> UCB and Epilepsy - an ongoing commitment ]]>Posted by Courtney Cicero, Patient Value Unit Neurology.
    Here at UCB we have a strong track record of supporting epilepsy research. Our scientists and academic partners work...]]>

    Scientific conferences are a great opportunity for us to share this important work. UCB has established a tradition of presenting our latest epilepsy research findings to the American Epilepsy Society (AES).

    At the 69th AES Annual Meeting, which takes place from 4th to 8th December in Philadelphia, UCB will share 19 presentations on a diverse range of topics.

    This contribution to scientific understanding reinforces the important role that research plays in UCB’s ongoing commitment to improving healthcare for people with epilepsy.

    These presentations cover our epilepsy medicine as well as a drug currently in development. The research also looks at treatment patterns and outcomes for patients with newly-diagnosed epilepsy; results from a survey of how patients perceive healthcare value; new models for early testing of anti-epileptic therapies; and the role of inflammation in epileptiform activity.

    The research exploring inflammation and epilepsy is the subject of a presentation within an Investigator’s Workshop ?a session highlighting the most outstanding abstracts on topics related to basic science and clinical research.

    This year UCB will have a strong presence on the Exhibit Hall floor at AES. The UCB booth will highlight epilepsy community programmes such as the UCB Family Epilepsy Scholarship Program and UCB support of the Canine Assistants Seizure Response Dogs. UCBCares will also have a presence in the exhibit hall.

    Lastly, in an attempt to further our commitment to innovation this year, UCB has helped produce the story of Jane Gauntlett, an adult living with epilepsy, in an immersive experience using the latest virtual reality technology.

    Jane will be on hand to guide audiences through her experience for multiple demonstrations offered throughout the day on Saturday and Sunday during exhibit hall hours at the UCB Innovation Pavilion.

    Additional activities occurring in the Innovation Pavilion include information on patient programmes and educational resources, and a ‘meet and greet?with Channing and her dog Georgie from the Canine Assistants Program.

    We are pleased to see so much interest in the in-depth work we do to identify and address the unmet needs of patients. UCB’s consistent presence at the annual AES meeting demonstrates a continued commitment to sharing our research findings with the epilepsy healthcare community.

    As the programmes showcased in the Exhibit Hall show, we are also supporting a wide range of initiatives designed to improve the lives of people with epilepsy.

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    <![CDATA[UCB wins award for patient-friendly packaging design ]]> UCB wins award for patient-friendly packaging design ]]>Posted by Francois Blin, Biological Pharma Sciences.
    Patients are at the heart of healthcare: everything we do at UCB is about improving the lives of people with severe diseases...]]>

    For us, it means thinking about the patient experience and doing what we can to make it better. With every decision we make there are opportunities for helping patients.

    For example, last year when we redesigned the packaging of our core medicine for rheumatoid arthritis, we took a step back and thought about the user ?the patient.

    People with RA have inflammation, swelling and pain in the joints. This can limit hand dexterity and make it difficult to perform many day-to-day activities like showering, getting dressed, doing chores, walking short distances, and running simple errands.

    That is why our packaging team worked with patients to develop a completely redesigned version of the pre-filled syringes pack that would be easy to use. Together, we included 20 new and improved features. The move towards this refined packaging solution is perfectly fitting with UCB’s mission to bring innovation and value to people living with severe diseases.

    For example, there are now several ways to open the packaging, making it easier for people with limited dexterity to access their medicine. An anti-tampering feature and hologram verification offer reassurance that the product is an authentic UCB medicine. The packaging is also sourced from recycled material and uses 25% less cardboard than earlier product packs.

    In recognition of these efforts, UCB won the European Healthcare Compliance Packaging Council’s 2015 Columbus Packaging Award. The award acknowledges the impact of smart packaging design on patient compliance and adherence. UCB’s pre-filled syringes pack was selected as the winner out of hundreds of entries.
    More to read on the HCPC website.

    By helping patients to take their medicine as prescribed, we are not only improving their day-to-day experience but increasing their quality of life by ensuring they get the treatment they need.

    We were delighted that our patient-centric approach has been rewarded and look forward to continuing to partner with patients to improve their lives in every way we can.

    Should you need some more information about this awarded packaging solution, feel free to contact François Blin (Biological Pharma Sciences Development Team): francois.blin@ucb.com.

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    <![CDATA[Patients train doctors to improve diagnosis]]> Patients train doctors to improve diagnosis]]>Posted by Danielle Derijcke, Patient Affairs.
    Health professionals are given a huge breadth of knowledge during their professional training but for many...]]>

    For chronic diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and ankylosing spondylitis (AS), diagnosis ?and effective treatment ?often come late, sometimes taking up to a decade. Delayed diagnosis can translate into poorer outcomes and reduced quality of life.

    The Patient Partners Programme gives trainee doctors, GPs, nurses and other healthcare professionals an opportunity to learn directly from patients about their symptoms and the impact of the disease on their daily lives but more importantly, they learn how to conduct the anamnesis and clinical exam in a more patient-focused way.

    This initiative first trains patients so they become, in turn, professional healthcare trainers. With the support of a consultant rheumatologist, these ‘expert patients?are teaching the next generation of GPs to be aware of RA and AS; to ask patients the right questions; and to have the right mindset to recognise these conditions at the earliest opportunity.

    By emphasizing earlier diagnosis of RA and AS patients, the Patient Partners initiative advocates initiation of treatment during the early window of opportunity of these diseases. This is definitely beneficial for the patient, both in the short and in the long run.

    In practice, the training sessions give participants a chance to interact with patients, examine them and hear their personal stories. Since patients often say that emotional aspects of severe and chronic diseases are neglected, this curriculum specifically includes a module on emotional intelligence.

    This ground-breaking approach was originally devised by a doctor and patient in Texas and made its way across the Atlantic in 1995 when a Swedish-based initiative was launched. In Belgium, the programme began in 1999 and is a not-for-profit organisation run by Professor René Westhovens in cooperation with the Royal Belgian Society for Rheumatology.

    UCB has been supportive of the project for a few years and has recently incorporated the training session into a leadership programme for its own business leaders.

    Thirty UCB employees had the opportunity to interact with patients through this initiative. They learned about the challenges of living with RA and AS, the frustration patients can feel while waiting years for the right diagnosis, and how severe diseases can ?if not well managed ?stand in the way of embracing work and study opportunities.

    It was an opportunity to understand these conditions and the people who live with them every day, as well as gaining a deeper appreciation of the value of early diagnosis, early intervention and improved outcomes.

    Looking ahead, UCB’s commitment to partner with external stakeholders will allow us to investigate future collaboration opportunities. For example, the topic on family planning and pregnancy for people with severe diseases ?an issue close to UCB’s heart and a deliverable of our collaboration with Patient Partners - will be added to the future training curriculum. This collaboration will also provide a valuable source of contributors to UCB patient panels.

    As this partnership is a win-win for both partners, we look forward to seeing the programme gain even more impact in the years to come.

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    <![CDATA[New 'app' tracks Parkinson’s symptoms for clinical trial]]> New ]]>Posted by Dolors Terricabras, Neurology New Solutions Development.
    When a new medicine or medical device is being tested in people with long-term illnesses, such as Parkinson’s disease,...]]>

    Patient diaries are an established way to record symptoms of long-term illnesses and usually come in paper form. However, paper-based patient diaries are imperfect.

    For a start, experience shows that patients often do not stick with their diaries. They may begin a trial with great enthusiasm for recording their symptoms but, with the best will in the world, their commitment to diary-keeping tends to fade over time. Patients can lose interest and diaries can get lost, meaning data is not collected.

    There are also concerns about accuracy. Patient diary entries are not always made in real time. When patients fill in a diary in retrospect, the risk of error is higher.

    At UCB, we are always looking for innovative solutions that solve problems and give us scope to do more than ever before. That is why we are using a very simple but custom-made patient diary app to monitor Parkinson’s symptoms as part of a clinical study.

    The study will assess the feasibility of a prototype medical device (the MC10 wearable sensor patch) that will monitor physiological parameters, such as limb movement. The device is being developed to measure and detect patterns in motor symptoms of patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease.

    This is the first time UCB has used an app in this way. Not only does it overcome many of the limitations of paper-based diaries, it allows us to do things that were never before possible. For example, the app can include reminders and instructional videos on how to complete the diary, to support patients during the clinical trial.

    The data captured by the patient diary app, together with some more traditional physician-scored symptom measures, will enable the development of intelligent algorithms that will be able to extract clinical symptoms from the data generated by the wearable sensor patch.

    The potential for more accurate, real-time data collection by the patient in the real-world, enhances the quality of data feeding the algorithms, and thus the ability of the sensor to more accurately detect and monitor specific motor symptoms.

    The user-friendly diary app can be carried by the patient throughout the study and they can enter information either when prompted or when they notice a change in their symptoms.

    In addition to being more timely and accurate than paper-based diaries, the beauty of this new patient diary app is that it “brings the trial to the patient? Rather than patients having input only when they visit their healthcare provider, they are participating throughout the process thanks to this easy-to-use technology.

    Better quality diary information will lead to better quality clinical data and smarter decision-making. At UCB, we believe that this can ultimately improve outcomes for patients ?and that is what we are here to do.

    For more on UCB’s collaboration with MC10, read our articles on wearable sensors and how real-time data can make medicine smarter.

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    <![CDATA[Epilepsy patient priorities: Diagnosis, treatment and quality of life]]> Epilepsy patient priorities: Diagnosis, treatment and quality of life]]>Posted by Werner Bleilevens, Communications Central Europe.
    People with epilepsy are concerned about...]]>

    The initiative gave the public an opportunity to put their questions to Dr Lothar Burghaus, Doctor of Neurology and Chief Physician at the Heilig-Geist Hospital in Cologne, and Anja Daniel-Zeipelt, UCB patient ambassador and author of several books on epilepsy.

    As a patient advocate, Anja was able to empathise with callers and share experiences while Dr Burghaus provided answers to more complex medical questions. Both offered valuable advice on how best to manage epilepsy.

    Each caller was given time to ask about issues that matter to them and their family. The average call time was around 11 minutes and, in total, the two experts provided seven hours of counselling.

    In addition to questions about diagnosis and treatment, there were queries about how to react in cases where a patient has had a seizure. Several callers referred to a UCB-supported epilepsy site in Germany which enables them to search for doctors or ask questions.

    The phone-in session had been promoted in the German media in advance and several newspapers followed up with reports after the event. This helped to increase public awareness of epilepsy and reduce the stigma that can sometimes be associated with the disease.

    UCB has previously organised a similar phone-in event for people with Parkinson’s disease and the format appears to be popular with patients and the general public alike.

    This is just one of the many ways in which we can provide a service to the patient communities with which we work.

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    <![CDATA[Driving medicine forward by sharing scientific knowledge]]> Driving medicine forward by sharing scientific knowledge]]>Posted by Andrea Levin, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
    This is one of the busiest times of the year for medical conferences and an important opportunity for UCB to share...]]>

    Ultimately, the biggest beneficiaries are patients. If we reflect on how far our understanding of diseases has come in recent decades, it is clear that medical research has seen major progress. From one month to the next, the changes may seem incremental but take a step back and you will see how dramatic the revolution has been.

    Today, research has advanced our understanding of severe diseases like rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PsA), and axial spondyloarthrits (axSpA),  autoimmune disorders where the body mistakenly attacks its own immune system. These diseases cause significant inflammation of the joints and spine and can be very disabling.

    Scientific research over the last few decades has revealed how these diseases manifest, often by overproduction of certain genes. This understanding has allowed UCB to create drugs that specifically target these genes, as well as conduct research to better understand the most appropriate patients for specific therapies.

    That is why UCB is so active at medical congresses. We have seen the value that sharing and exchanging scientific research can bring to patients.

    However, we also know that we are a long way from fully understanding how to optimise treatment for all patients with immunological diseases; more work needs to be done.

    At the American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting in San Francisco this week (6-11 November), we are presenting the latest data from our immunology portfolio. A total of 19 studies will be shared, many of them exploring how our core medicine in this field can be used to improve the lives of a broad range of patients.

    We are also publishing data from new studies on investigational treatments for systemic lupus erythematosus and Söjrgen’s Syndrome.

    Active attendance at influential scientific conferences like this is an important part of our contribution to improving patients?lives. Last month we contributed several presentations to the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) 2015 Annual Scientific Meeting, taking place in Honolulu (16-21 October).

    The focus here was mainly on Crohn's disease, a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which is chronic, progressive, and often destructive.

    UCB will continue to invest in research and to add real value to medical science by participating in scientific congresses. We are there to learn and share so that we can improve patient care.

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    <![CDATA[How is 2015 going for UCB? Well, I’m glad you asked…]]> How is 2015 going for UCB? Well, I’m glad you asked? src=]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
    This is a day - and the coming weeks- when my or Isabelle’s phone rings rather a lot...]]>

    UCB has just published its Interim Report for the first nine months of 2015. It contains our latest net sales numbers for our core medicines which are driving company growth, and an update of our research and development pipeline. Indeed, three quarters of the way into 2015 we have a pretty good idea of how the full year will look ?we also updated our full year financial outlook.

    Some people love to hear data; they want numbers. Others prefer narrative ?the story behind the numbers. And others like both. They are keen to see the big picture and get a handle on where the company is going.

    Let’s start with the numbers and then talk about what they mean. For the first nine months of 2015, total revenue is up 19% to ?,864 million - that’s +12% at constant exchange rates.

    Combined net sales of our three core medicines reached ?,469 million which represents an increase of 41% (or 24% at constant exchange rates). Net sales of our established epilepsy medicine were ?65 ?up 12% (or 2% at constant exchange rates).

    With these new numbers to hand, we have updated our financial outlook for 2015. Revenue is expected at approximately ?,750 million; Recurring Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (rEBITDA) is now expected about ?00, and core earnings per share is in the range of ?.00 and ?.10.

    But what’s the story? Well, the central characters ?our three core medicines ?are very much center stage. They are driving overall company growth, reaching more and more patients with neurological or immunological diseases than ever. Due to this and to favorable currency effects, less pre-marketing costs and efficiency gains within the organization we were able to set a higher financial outlook for 2015.

    We are also seeing continued growth in our pipeline where potential new medicines are in clinical trials and new uses for some of our current products are being explored. The clinical development pipeline now comprises nine projects in phase 1 or 2 next to our phase 3 development project in osteoporosis and a new treatment option for epilepsy, currently under review by the authorities.

    If you would like to hear more, do not hesitate to get in touch: Antje.Witte@ucb.com.

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    <![CDATA[World Osteoporosis Day: love your bones]]> World Osteoporosis Day: love your bones]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, Communications, British and Irish Isles .
    Did you know that around one in three women and one in twelve men over the age of fifty worldwide are at risk...]]>

    World Osteoporosis Day takes place every year on October 20, organised by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) with campaigns in more than 90 countries. It is an opportunity to raise awareness of the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis.

    Osteoporosis is a disease of the bones in which the bone mineral density is reduced and bone "micro-architecture" is disrupted. This can lead to fractures in the spine, hip and wrist.

    Collapsed vertebrae can cause back pain, a hunched forward or bent stature, loss of height, and limited mobility. In men, fragility fractures of ribs are also common.

    At UCB, we are committed to broadening the range of therapies for osteoporosis, which can lead to recurrent bone fractures and severe, life-changing disability.

    This year, campaigners are focusing on preserving bone strength by ensuring you eat foods rich in calcium and vitamin D. To learn more about how to ‘Serve Up Bone Strength? visit the World Osteoporosis Day website.

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    <![CDATA[High 5 for World Arthritis Day!]]> High 5 for World Arthritis Day!]]>Posted by Andrea Levin, Global Communications & Company Reputation .
    World Arthritis Day (WAD) 2015 takes place on October 12 and is inspiring people to share a 'high 5' to show support and...]]>

    The theme of this year's WAD is 'It's in your hands, take action'.  Organisers are encouraging people around the globe to use social media channels to get the message out and UCB employees are taking part.

    Our company is committed to developing new technologies and therapies for people living with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases. Every day, the creativity and innovation of our scientists are improving people's lives.

    For WAD, our employees are using their creativity in another way. They are joining the high 5 campaign ?and you can too. Here's what to do:
    • Write a name on your hand ?the name of the person(s) you are High 5ing for World Arthritis Day
    • Take a photo of your hand in a High 5 pose
    • Write a message to accompany your photo: tell people why you are supporting the campaign
    • Post your photo on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #WADHigh5. Don't forget to mention the person you are high-fiving.
    You can learn more about the campaign here and read how you can get involved. A toolkit is also available, featuring guidance material and artworks for posters, leaflets, badges and banners.

    The more people who take part, the great the impact will be. Will you lend a hand?

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    <![CDATA[Partnering for brain research]]> Partnering for brain research]]>Posted by Roger Palframan, UCB New Medicines.
    At UCB, we believe partnership is essential to making science progress and improving the lives of people living with severe....]]>

    Building on a collaboration established last year in the areas of metabolic disease, bone disorders and rare genetic variant analysis, the new project focuses on preventing neuronal cell loss as part of our Technology Access: Antibody Platform programme.

    Both partners ?UCB and Weill Cornell ?bring their unique knowhow to the project. UCB’s world-leading antibody discovery capabilities will provide tools to dissect disease mechanisms, while the knowledge and capabilities of Professor Barbara Hempstead at Weill Cornell will ensure scientific excellence with deep understanding and capabilities to study core disease mechanisms. To further the partnership between UCB and Weill Cornell, Weill Cornell receives research support from UCB.

    Specifically, together we will study the mechanisms that cause neuronal loss when seizures occur in people with epilepsy. Our scientists will use UCB’s cutting-edge technological platform and expertise to discover antibodies for the Weill Cornell lab to work with.

    If successful the project will catalyse the development of innovative targeted therapeutics that prevent neuronal cell loss and decline in brain function in patients.

    This new chapter in UCB’s alliance with Weill Cornell demonstrates our shared commitment to long-term collaboration. For us, it is also the latest in a series of link-ups dedicated to turning scientific discovery into transformative health improvements for patients.

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    <![CDATA[Diving into personalized medicine series: Star Trek, big data and protecting patient privacy]]> Diving into personalized medicine series: Star Trek, big data and protecting patient privacy]]>Posted by Miguel Louzan, IT Patient Value Units and Operations.
    ]]>

    Unwittingly, this fictional tool hinted at the promise now being realized by big data.

    Today, new advances in big data technology are allowing researchers to quickly analyze and cross-reference massive sets of anonymized patient data from various sources, in order to uncover new triggers and insights that could potentially change the course of treatment for individuals and large populations living with severe diseases.

    Indeed, all around us are examples of the tremendous potential of big data to accelerate innovation. Already, cognitive computing tools have been used to identify potential treatments for rare types of cancer. Groups like the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), IBM and Apple - as well as UCB - are exploring projects that seek to leverage predictive analytics to improve population health and treatment outcomes for a variety of severe diseases. Meanwhile, new wearable sensors and mobile health tools are providing us with even more insights that can help us personalize patient care.

    The rise of big data has offered us unprecedented opportunity - and also, unprecedented responsibility. Unlike science-fiction, the large amounts of anonymous data needed to power these technologies are being provided by real people, and we have an obligation at all times to fiercely protect their privacy.

    So how do we ensure we collect, use and protect data in an ethical way that preserves our bond of trust and collaboration with patients?

    As a patient-centric company, UCB honors, believes in and supports the critical role of patient privacy in the treatment of diseases. To demonstrate such commitment, UCB has included privacy as one of the group’s core values in its Global Code of Conduct, and adopted internal rules (BCRs) to ensure data protection and privacy compliance worldwide. We will continue to go above and beyond in building trust with patients by making sure they are adequately informed of what data we collect and share, as well as offer an opportunity for patients to opt out when they choose.

    It is also important for us to define the end-use of patient data before we capture it. Wearable sensors can supply us with a seemingly endless amount of data points. Our goal, however, is not merely to collect data, but to gather insights with a clear idea of which patient needs we aim to address.

    By following these principles, we can use data responsibly to provide novel solutions for patients. As these technologies mature, we must develop consistent guidelines that safeguard patient privacy while allowing us to tap into the promise of big data.

    What standards do you feel should be put in place in ensure we meet our patients?expectations in the way we collect, share and protect data?

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    <![CDATA[Turning knowledge into value for patients]]> Turning knowledge into value for patients]]>Posted by Bahar Etratti, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
    It is often said that knowledge is power. For people with epilepsy and their healthcare professionals, knowledge is the power...
    ]]>

    That is why UCB scientists strive to develop new medicines to improve patients' lives and to explore how our therapies can meet the needs of people living with severe diseases.

    Modern medicine is fueled by data. By generating and sharing information, UCB can make a valuable contribution to science, with the ultimate goal of enhancing clinical practice and thus improving outcomes for patients.

    At the 31st International Epilepsy Congress (September 5-9) held in Istanbul, Turkey, UCB will present a total of 17 accepted abstracts, including three 'Best Posters' ?selected by the Scientific and Organising Committee based on merit ?as well as an oral presentation.

    These data presentations will share information on the use of our epilepsy medicines in a range of patient populations, as well as pre-clinical studies and clinical trials of an anti-epileptic compound from our late-stage development pipeline.

    UCB's strong presence at the IEC reinforces our foundational approach to delivering value to epilepsy patients by fueling progress in our understanding of the disease and its management. By continuing to push the boundaries of scientific knowledge we can help to address the unmet needs of people living with epilepsy.

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    <![CDATA[Study: Gut bacteria influences the immune system]]> Study: Gut bacteria influences the immune system]]>Posted by Ray Jupp, Patient Value Unit - New Medicines.
    Here's a question we don't ask ourselves too frequently: What's in your gut?...]]>

    We like to think of ourselves as individuals; as single independent organisms going about our business. But scientists have known for some time that we carry around trillions of microorganisms.

    To put that in context, the number of bacteria in the gut is over ten times greater than the total number of human cells in the body!

    Some of these microorganisms perform useful tasks ?like helping digestion ?while others appear to have very little interaction with their human hosts. Indeed, it was once thought that almost all species of gut bacteria simply coexist with humans without having much effect one way or another.

    But, lately, it seems the more research that we do, the more we learn about importance of our microbial guests to our health.

    Researchers in the Harvard-UCB 'microbiome' team have identified bacteria that can change the function of specific immune suppressor cells, pointing the way towards new therapies for people living with immunological diseases.

    This discovery, published in the journal Science, provides a deeper understanding of how bacteria in the intestines interact with the host immune system in health and disease.

    The joint Harvard-UCB project team is currently building the critical components to translate this discovery into a therapeutic programme. The research alliance between Harvard and UCB is an important part of our ‘super network?of partners and is a great example of industry-academia co-creation.

    It generates new knowledge and leverages external scientific advances, resources and expertise that complement our unique internal capabilities with the goal to create value for patients.

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    <![CDATA[Connecting Europe's neurology rising stars]]> Connecting Europe]]>Posted by Rita Campos, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
    Europe has some of the world's most promising rising stars in neurology...]]>

    21st century doctors do not work in isolation and their education does not end when they graduate from medical school.

    Today's medical specialists are on a journey of continuous learning, working with networks of experts to expand their knowledge and improve the care they deliver to patients.

    To support this, UCB hosted the Epilepsy Patients Experience Workshop in Paris on 26-27 June. This was the fifth interactive workshop of its kind in neurology. It brought together 35 neurology rising stars from across Europe to discuss their own clinical practice and to learn about the needs of specific epilepsy patient groups.

    IMG_1562.JPG












    Some of Europe's leading experts in neurology were on hand to lead discussions on hospital-based neurology care; working with elderly patients, and patients with brain tumours.

    There was a strong emphasis on the importance of tailoring multidisciplinary care to meet the specific needs of individual patients.

    The workshop also discussed the importance of drug interactions in the management of epilepsy; epilepsy as a comorbidity; managing epilepsy in an intensive care setting; and a series of real-life patient case studies.

    Participants praised the workshop's high-quality scientific content which helped to share best practice in Europe.

    By supporting educational meetings of this kind, UCB aims to foster networks and experience-sharing among physicians throughout the EU. This will help to improve care for all people living with epilepsy, in keeping with our tagline: Inspired by Patients: Driven by Science.

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    <![CDATA[Half Year Report 2015: core medicines deliver strong growth]]> Half Year Report 2015: core medicines deliver strong growth]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
    Strong growth from our three core...]]>

    It is almost three years since we passed the 'inflection point' at which sales of these products eclipsed sales of UCB's established epilepsy drug. Now, 55% of the company's total net sales can be attributed to these three core medicines. We expect the continued growth of these medicines towards our combined peak sales target of at least ?3.1 billion driving overall company growth.

    Revenue for the first half of the year was ?1,917 million, +21% or 12% at constant currency exchange rates (CER). Sales of the three core products were ?942 million, +40% or 23% CER. Our established epilepsy product had net sales of ?385 million, +14% or +2% CER.

    Underlying profitability (recurring EBITDA) reached ?464 million (+49%; +31% CER), driven by tailwind from foreign exchange rates, strong net sales growth, higher gross margin ?thanks to the improved product mix ?and a relatively lower increase of operating expenses. Hence, we reached a Core earnings per share number of 1.18?after 0.96?

    Given the tailwind from currency exchange rates, we have adjusted the financial outlook for the full year 2015 to reflect these exchange rate effects.

    While we had to report disappointing news on our lupus project, we also saw some positive news from our pipeline. The phase 3 trial began for our core medicine in primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures. Two proof-of-concept studies started ?one being a combination of an investigational drug with our core medicine in rheumatoid arthritis and the other one including a new small molecule in development for highly drug-resistant epilepsy.

    I also would like to express our sincere thanks to the patients and clinical investigators, and to all people living with severe diseases. Your insights and your participation and efforts in clinical programmes make our commitment to developing new therapies for the treatment of severe diseases possible.

    If you are now heading for a well-deserved vacation, please enjoy ?I will be around and "on duty" if you have questions or would like to chat. Otherwise we will meet each other in September: New York, London, Amsterdam and Paris are on my list ?looking forward to connecting!

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    <![CDATA[What do patients want?]]> What do patients want?]]>Posted by Jesús Sobrino, UCB Iberia.
    The days of patients nodding silently as they passively receive information from their doctor are gone... ]]>

    Modern patients are informed, connected and curious. They read about their conditions online, they engage with other patients and they expect a more dynamic interaction with health services.

    To better understand what today's patients value, UCB Iberia convened an online meeting of patients to ask them about their needs. Around 200 people took part from Spain, Portugal, Belgium, Greece, Germany, Switzerland, México, Uruguay, Argentina, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Peru, Colombia and Brazil.

    The session was moderated by former professional basketball player Fernando Romay, married to Leticia, living with RA and discussions were led by 3 patients living with different immunological diseases.

    The first theme to be explored was doctor-patient communication. Patients said they want greater mutual understanding. 41% said they would like improved closeness and empathy from their health professionals, and several participants called for more time with their doctor.

    Patients can play an active role in creating this environment themselves, according to one contributor. For example, writing your concerns on a piece of paper can help to ensure that nothing is left unsaid during a consultation.

    Health professionals are often under time pressure, it was noted, so both sides must take responsibility for getting maximum value from every interaction.

    Participants said they would also like to see better comprehension of chronic diseases, not just by society in general but also from their own families and caregivers.

    The conversation then moved to a discussion on e-Health. Almost 60% of patients said they consulted the internet after discovering symptoms or receiving a diagnosis. However, the quality of online information remains an issue: 96% said they would like their doctor to recommend trustworthy websites and any other new communication channel.

    All participants agreed that patient associations have a valuable role to play. They can give advice, connect you with other people in the same situation, and support you in dealing with diagnosis, said a patient.

    Empowered and informed patients will play a valuable role in managing chronic diseases in the years to come. The role of 'patient experts' is expected to grow, with patient associations and the medical profession training patients to become disease advocates.

    Peer support can help answer many of the practical questions that newly-diagnosed patients have.

    The interactive meeting was a great success with 93% of participants saying they would like to take part again.

    This online patient discussion demonstrates UCB's willingness to listen and to give patients a platform to engage with experts and with one another.

    For us, we are happy to explore innovative initiatives that enhance patients' quality of life. Understanding what patients want from healthcare will help us to meet their needs.

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    <![CDATA[UCB recognised for cell research]]> UCB recognised for cell research]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
    A leading UCB researcher has received an award from a scientific society... ]]>

    Stefanos Grammatikos, Head of Biotech Services at UCB, was presented with the ESACT Medal for his leadership role in ESACT and his contribution to the promotion of the protein therapeutics industry in Europe.

    Stefanos has developed technologies that accelerated the development and manufacture of monoclonal antibodies ?modern biological medicines that can be used to treat autoimmune diseases.

    ESACT is a Society which brings together scientists, engineers and other specialists working with cells. It was founded in 1976 to create a forum for the exchange of ideas on biological and engineering techniques.

    Its membership consists of scientists and engineers in academic, medical and industrial R&D and production at applied science institutions and universities, in the medical services, in industry, and in the political and regulatory bodies.

    Stefanos has been an active member of the Society and was an elected member of its Executive Committee from 2001 to 2013.

    In paying tribute to Stefanos' achievements, Professor Terry Papoutsakis of the University of Delaware, acknowledged UCB's leadership position in pharma and biotech.

    It is thanks to the stellar individual scientists like Stefanos that we have collectively succeeded in bringing new medicines to patients.

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    <![CDATA[World Brain Day puts spotlight on epilepsy]]> World Brain Day puts spotlight on epilepsy]]>Posted by Bahar Etratti, Global Communications & Company Reputation.
    The World Federation of Neurology celebrates World Brain Day... ]]>

    The Federation is working with the World Health Organization, the International League Against Epilepsy and the International Bureau for Epilepsy, as well as national neurology associations and patient support groups, to raise public awareness of the condition.

    Epilepsy affects an estimated 65 million people worldwide. 80% of people with epilepsy in low and middle-income countries do not have access to medication. According to the World Federation of Neurology, with treatment, 70% of people with epilepsy could be seizure free.

    There is growing momentum behind improved understanding of the disease and better outcomes for those affected. In May 2015 the WHO passed a resolution at the World Health Assembly renewing its commitment to addressing the global burden of epilepsy.

    The Organization says people with epilepsy should receive timely treatment and can benefit from educational and occupational opportunities, free from stigma and discrimination.

    Lack of identification and treatment for epilepsy imposes a huge social and financial burden on the individual, their family and their community, according to the World Federation of Neurology.

    Experts say that ignorance and fear cause social isolation and prevent people with epilepsy from seeking treatment. Many healthcare providers do not have the training to recognise, diagnose or treat epilepsy.

    UCB plays an active role in several countries where epilepsy is not always well understood.

    We currently have multiple Corporate Societal Responsibility (CSR) projects running in China, Myanmar, Mozambique, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

    UCB is committed to work with partners to reduce the force of stigma and present value creating medicines and solutions for people living with epilepsy so they have the opportunity to live life on their own terms.

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    <![CDATA[New "Neurology" article shows value of online patient networks ]]> New "Neurology" article shows value of online patient networks   ]]>Posted by Patty Fritz, Patient Value Practices Development & Medical.
    Research co-led by UCB has been...
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    study shows that online patient communities can help to improve epilepsy management.

    People living with epilepsy are increasingly using web-based resources to help manage their condition. This can include searching for information about the disease and discussing their condition with other patients online.

    The scientists behind the new research wanted to explore whether these online patient communities actually improve outcomes for patients.

    The POEM study is a collaborative project by UCB, the San Francisco Veterans Administration (VA), and PatientsLikeMe (PLM).

    It is the first real-world study of an online health management platform to show significant improvements in established metrics of epilepsy self-management.

    So what exactly did the researchers do?

    The study asked veterans living with epilepsy to complete a baseline assessment of two validated scales that measure epilepsy self-management practices, the Epilepsy Self-Management Scale (ESMS) and the Epilepsy Self-Efficacy Scale (ESES).

    After completing the initial survey, 249 patients were invited to register as PatientsLikeMe members and engage on the site, which offers multiple ways for patients to connect with other patients, condition-specific tracking tools and educational resources.

    Six weeks later, 92 participants (36.9%) completed the assessment of ESES and ESMS measures again. These veterans reported improvement in epilepsy self-management and self-efficacy, demonstrated by increases in both the ESMS and ESES total scores over six weeks. The greatest change was observed on the ESMS information management subscale.

    Regular readers of UCB stories might recall that initial findings from the study were presented at the 66th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in Philadelphia.

    The publication of these data in a highly-regarded academic journal is a testament to the quality of the research.

    It is also an excellent example of how UCB is contributing to improving the lives of people with epilepsy. It shows our ongoing commitment to collaborate with other stakeholders that share our goal of making a measurable difference to patients' lives.

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    <![CDATA[Going the extra mile for epilepsy in Africa]]> Going the extra mile for epilepsy in Africa]]>Posted by Katrien Rennemeier, Corporate Societal Responsibility .
    On 4 July, nine of our UCB NewMeds team begin a three-day cycle from our campus... ]]>

    They will cycle 438 kilometres to raise funds for epilepsy projects in Africa, helping to fund the purchase of new electroencephalography (EEG) equipment which will be used to diagnose epilepsy in rural areas.

    All going to plan, they will arrive in time for the two-day scientific meeting on 7 July which will feature a talk by Brian Kobilka, winner of a Nobel Prize in chemistry.

    So why is UCB going to such lengths to support epilepsy care in Africa? As an established world leader in the field of epilepsy, we believe it is our responsibility to have a positive impact on people living with epilepsy in underprivileged circumstances.

    An estimated 60 million people worldwide have epilepsy. Approximately 50 million of these live in Africa, Asia and South America.

    UCB currently has Corporate Societal Responsibility (CSR) projects running in five countries: in China we work with Project Hope and with the Red Cross Society of China, in Myanmar and Mozambique we support WHO projects, and in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) we are working in partnership with the Brothers of Charity ?an international Belgian-based NGO.

    One of our priorities is to educate people about epilepsy. In cultures where the disease is not well known, epilepsy attracts social stigma leading to exclusion. In some cases, people with epilepsy are denied access to education and even excluded from marriage.

    Raising awareness is an important part of our work. Providing access to diagnosis and care is also crucial. In parts of Rwanda and the DRC, we are starting from scratch: there is no diagnostic technology, a lack of professional medical expertise, and very limited health services.

    This is why the cycle from the UK to Belgium is so important. The team hopes to raise enough money to fund the purchase of EEG equipment  which would make a radical difference to the lives of people living in areas where access to healthcare is extremely challenging.

    If you would like to contribute financially to these great efforts, please send us an email at csr@ucb.com to find how you can donate to the UCB CSR Fund.

    To learn more about CSR at UCB please visit our website.

    We wish the cyclists well on their mission and look forward to welcoming them to Brussels.

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    <![CDATA[UCB symposium: early Parkinson's treatment can improve outcomes]]> UCB symposium: early Parkinson]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Neurology Patient Value Unit.
    Beginning treatment for Parkinson's...]]>

    The research, published online in a peer-reviewed journal and presented at the 1st Congress of the European Academy of Neurology (EAN) in Berlin (20-23 June), suggests that prompt treatment may improve motor function and activity of daily living for 45 months. Patients starting six months later improved motor function by 21 months. As a result, these results suggest there may have been a potential increase of up to 2 years longer sustained efficacy in some patients with early PD when treatment was started 6 months earlier.

    The study was conducted by Professor Lars Timmermann, MD, from the Department of Neurology, University Hospital Cologne. He pooled results from two pivotal studies on patients with early Parkinson's disease.

    Prof. Timmermann says the goal of the investigation was to explore whether time of treatment initiation impacts the outcome of patients living with PD. This question was of interest because treatment is often delayed until symptoms begin to limit the patient's ability to function.

    Prof. Timmermann and his colleagues found that postponing treatment comes at a cost. By waiting longer to start treatment, the scope for improving symptoms can be reduced, leaving patients with a loss of functional ability that cannot be regained.

    By intervening early in patients who have not yet suffered functional disability or impairment, doctors can preserve function, movement and even independence for longer.

    The data were presented during a UCB Neurology Corporate Satellite Symposium at EAN Congress.

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    <![CDATA[UCB leads Life Science event during Belgian Royal visit to China]]> UCB leads Life Science event during Belgian Royal visit to China]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Global Communications & Company Reputation .
    UCB's record of helping Chinese patients...]]>

    That is why we are so proud to have led a life science event during this week's Belgian Royal visit to China (20 ?28 June). The visit will take place in Wuhan, Beijing, Shanghai, Suzhou and Shenzhen.

    The life science event, led by UCB CEO Jean-Christophe Tellier, brought together key academic, industry and government officials and comes as our company continues to reinforce its presence in China.

    Speakers included the Chinese Vice-Minister of National Health and Family Planning Commission Mr. Sun Zhigang as well as the Belgian Secretary of State for Foreign Trade Mr Pieter De Crem. The event explored ways to enhance synergies between Belgian and Chinese healthcare organisations and to increase the value they can bring to patients.

    UCB's presence in China can be traced by to the early 1990s. The launch in 2007 of our blockbuster treatment for patients suffering from epilepsy was an important landmark in establishing the company's reputation as a leader in neurology.

    Last year, UCB inaugurated a new state of the art 13,000 m̔ manufacturing site in Zhuhai which is playing a key role in UCB’s development in China. It will also support UCB’s growth strategy in the coming years in the Asia-Pacific region.

    Our commitment to China is deepening. Phase III clinical trials on two of our core neurology products have recently been published, opening up the possibility that patients in China will have access to their medicines in the years ahead.

    UCB has also been working to support awareness-raising initiatives in China and has developed strong relationships with medical and scientific associations in China.

    The week's Royal visit is a recognition of the importance of the Chinese economy and UCB's involvement demonstrates our long-term connection to healthcare in China.

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    <![CDATA[How could we help reduce hospitalisation rates for people with epilepsy? ]]> How could we help reduce hospitalisation rates for people with epilepsy? ]]>Posted by Amy Chandler, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
    A new study offers fresh insights...]]>

    The findings are contained in a new US study1 which looked back at the health insurance records of 17,743 people with epilepsy to examine the risk factors for hospitalisation in this large group of patients.

    The research reveals that patients taking an older anti-epilepsy drug which was introduced before 1994 had, on average, an epilepsy-related hospital encounter every 684 days (22.8 months). Those on newer medicines were hospitalised every 1,001 days (33.4 months).

    This means that people taking newer epilepsy medications had a 31% lower risk of hospitalisation compared to those taking older drugs.

    What happened after hospitalisation also mattered. The researchers found that patients whose doctor changed their epilepsy therapy following a hospital encounter recorded fewer subsequent epilepsy-related hospitalisations. The largest benefit was for patients switched from older drugs to newer ones.

    Patients living closer to an epilepsy specialist were more likely to be on newer drugs and less likely to be hospitalised, according to the study.

    The study, resulting from a research collaboration between the Epilepsy Foundation and UCB, was published in a peer-reviewed journal, "Epilepsy & Behavior".

    These data can help to improve care and outcomes for people living with epilepsy by reducing the number of seizures and reducing hospitalisation rates.

    The Epilepsy Foundation, a US-based patient group, is using the findings to promote best practices and advocate for better outcomes for patients. They have published state-level scorecards showing which US states are providing the kind of care highlighted in the study and which states have opportunities to improve.

    Thanks to this kind of research, policymakers have more details about what works and where change is needed most. Information is power; the power to improve patients' lives.

    Reference
    1. Faught E, et al. Newer antiepileptic drug use and other factors decreasing hospital encounters. Epilepsy Behav (2015), http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yebeh.2015.01.039

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    <![CDATA[Bringing medicines to Parkinson's patients around the world]]> Bringing medicines to Parkinson]]>Posted by Mahnaz Asgharnejad, Patient Value Unit - Neurology.
    At UCB, we harness the latest scientific...
    ]]>
    Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science.

    Science is a truly global endeavour that reaches beyond borders and patients with unmet medical need are to be found in every country of the world. That is why it is important to us that the medicines we develop and produce reach as many people as possible.

    However, not all patient populations respond in the same way to medicines. Sometimes, the effect of a medication could be a little better or worse in, for example, an African population compared to a Caucasian population. For this reason, national regulators in some countries ask pharmaceutical companies to conduct studies examining how their population responds to medicines.

    With this in mind, UCB has presented results from a clinical study we conducted in China. The data was shared at the 19th International Congress of Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders in San Diego (June 14-18).

    The research looked at the efficacy and safety of one of UCB's medicines in treating 247 patients in China with early-stage Parkinson's disease. Patients show improved activities of daily living and motor function compared with placebo.

    Conducted by the Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Beijing, as well as by 23 other medical centers in China, it is an important step on the road to bringing our medicines to Chinese patients. The therapy in question is already available in 46 countries worldwide, including the US, the European Union and Japan.

    The research presented at the international conference in San Diego will form part of a regulatory application in China later this year.

    Reference
    Zhang Z et al. Efficacy and safety of rotigotine transdermal patch in Chinese patients with early-stage Parkinson’s disease: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Presented at the 19th International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders, San Diego, USA, June 14-18, 2015.

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    <![CDATA[Demonstrating our scientific excellence and commitment to rheumatology: UCB at EULAR 2015]]> Demonstrating our scientific excellence and commitment to rheumatology: UCB at EULAR 2015]]>Posted by Andrea Levin, Global Communication, Immunology.
    ]]>
    th ?13th June 2015). The UCB-sponsored clinical and scientific presentations at EULAR 2015 highlight our dedication to scientific excellence and improving the lives of people with severe diseases.

    According to the Congress planners, EULAR is the most important platform in Europe for exchanging scientific and clinical information on rheumatology. Approximately 14,000 scientists, physicians, allied health professionals and related audiences attended from more than 120 countries.

    EULAR is an important opportunity for UCB to share the latest research from its pipeline on rheumatic diseases.

    One key presentation was the Phase 3 investigational data assessing the efficacy and safety of one of our core medicines used to treat rheumatoid arthritis in combination with optimized methotrexate in patients with severe, active and progressive rheumatoid arthritis who have not been treated with disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARD-naïve).

    Pre-clinical data was also shown on an investigational medicine in Phase 3 clinical development for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and on an investigational medicine for immune-inflammatory diseases.

    UCB also sponsored two satellite symposia, one on the importance of appropriately timing treatment initiation in RA patients and the other on optimal management of spondyloarthritis.

    Rheumatic diseases affect hundreds of millions of people around the world and are the most common cause of severe long-term pain and physical disability. The burden of rheumatic diseases on people and society is expected to increase dramatically over the next decade, largely due to an increasingly ageing population and lifestyle changes throughout the world.1

    The pain and disability caused by rheumatic disease can have an impact on emotional well-being and mental health. Rheumatic diseases not only affect the people suffering from them but also their families who bear significant burden in terms of high financial costs, time and personal commitment to ensure relatives receive the necessary care and treatment.1

    The serious impact of rheumatic disease is the reason UCB continues its commitment to research in this disease area and providing value to patients living with these conditions.

    Reference
    1. EULAR 2015. European League Against Rheumatism Annual Congress. Rheumatic diseases factsheet. Accessed at: http://www.congress.eular.org/myUploadData/files/EULAR%202015%20Rheumatic%20Diseases%20Factsheet.pdf

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    <![CDATA[What role does the immune system play in brain diseases?]]> What role does the immune system play in brain diseases?]]>Posted by Jonas Hannestad, Neurosciences Discovery Medicine.
    As a company with expertise in neurology and immunology, UCB is well placed...]]>

    A new paper co-authored by researchers from Yale and UCB explores the role of cutting edge imaging techniques in studying brain inflammation.

    This work, which was presented at the 2015 Annual Meeting of the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, could help understand neurodegeneration and guide treatment choices that will become available in the coming years. It is very much at the intersection of our areas of interest and shows the kinds of synergies that are emerging between neuroscience and immunology research.

    For UCB, and for me personally, it is hugely exciting to present our ideas to experts in nuclear medicine and molecular imaging. We believe that by breaking down barriers between disciplines we can find new approaches to solving the biggest challenges facing medical science.

    Brain inflammation
    For decades, scientists have been searching for ways to stop deterioration seen in patients with neurodegenerative diseases. The focus of research has been to try to find ways to prevent neuronal cell death thought to be caused by a build-up of a protein known as beta-amyloid.

    However, despite intense efforts, this has yet to produce a breakthrough for patients. Two other avenues are also being investigated: the misfolding of a protein called tau, which seems to be more closely related to the neuronal cell death seen in some neurodegenerative diseases, and the role of neuroinflammation in these diseases. The latter is currently of particular interest to our research team and is a new area of research at UCB.

    In our new study, we used positron emission tomography (PET) to measure activation of immune cells in the brain. Eight healthy individuals were given a PET ligand, a molecule that binds to immune cells in the brain and becomes visible on a PET.

    The subjects were scanned before and after being injected with LPS a substance known to stimulate the immune system temporarily. Looking at the PET scans, we could then see the impact on the brain of this immune response: before giving LPS the immune cells in the brain were resting; after giving LPS these cells were activated, a phenomenon called neuroinflammation.

    This is completely new. Nobody has used this kind of scan to look at an experimentally-induced brain immune response in humans.

    Implications for patients
    Our new research shows that PET imaging technology can be used to measure changes in brain inflammation. This offers two exciting possibilities. One is that new or existing anti-inflammatory medicines could be used to reduce inflammation ?something that can be studied using PET scans. This would allow early clinical research to determine whether a new drug actually has the ability to reduce brain inflammation.

    The other is that it could ultimately be used as a patient stratification tool. The PET scan would tell doctors that their patient has (or has not) significant neuroinflammation. Based on this, a doctor would know whether using anti-inflammatory therapies is likely to be effective. In other words, this could be used to match the right patient with the right treatment.

    This work has implications for a variety of neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, depression, Alzheimer’s Disease, addiction and a whole range of other brain disorders.

    It sums up several aspects of UCB's approach to research: we collaborate with leading academic researchers; we embrace cutting edge technologies; and we combine our own expertise, from both neuroscience and immunology to try to improve the lives of patients.

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    <![CDATA[Cycling French champion leads the fight against epilepsy ]]> Cycling French champion leads the fight against epilepsy ]]>Posted by Jean-Michel Joubert, Governmental Affairs.
    Marion Clignet is a champion in every...
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    She is also a fighter. What many people did not know when they saw her stand on the winners' podium was that Marion was overcoming challenges that her opponents did not face.

    When she was 22 years of age, Marion was diagnosed with epilepsy. For some, this may have made them question whether they could compete with the best cyclists in the world. But Marion fought to overcome this hurdle and continued to improve as a cyclist ?and she kept on winning.

    Today, having retired from professional sport, Marion has another challenge: raising awareness of epilepsy. She believes that the disease is poorly understood and she has worked tirelessly to change attitudes.

    Rather than viewing epilepsy as a reason to avoid sport, Marion shows how sport can be an important support for epilepsy patients. She wants young people in particular to appreciate how exercise can improve balance, dexterity and flexibility.

    For six years, she has organised a charity cycle ride, raising epilepsy awareness as well as raising funds for important projects. On 6 June, she will lead hundreds of cyclists in the 7th edition of the event.

    Her efforts are translating into concrete results ?quite literally! Marion hopes to raise ? million to build a gymnasium for children who attend Castelnouvel, a school dedicated to children with severe epilepsy.

    The gym will include a research centre, allowing scientists to study the impact of physical activity on children with epilepsy.

    UCB has a proud history of working to improve the lives of people with epilepsy and supports Marion's excellent work in this area. To demonstrate our commitment, more than 50 UCB employees will take part in the cycling event.

    “We have many more miles to travel on the road to defeating severe epilepsy but, with Marion's leadership, we are committed to staying the course until we reach this destination?comments Anne de Cassini, UCB Area Head France.

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    <![CDATA[Facebook page opens new channel for inspiration]]> Facebook page opens new channel for inspiration]]>Posted by Greg Cohen, Social Media & Influence.
    At UCB, we take pride in the fact that we are Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science...
    ]]>
    Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. We use a range of channels to connect with patients, healthcare professionals, jobseekers, investors and other stakeholders with an interest in UCB.

    We take inspiration from the patients we meet through our research and disease awareness efforts, and from the stories and ideas that healthcare professionals share with us every day.

    Inspiration can be found online too. Our social media channels are an excellent way to engage with the public, to hear how severe diseases affect people's lives, and to learn how we can meet their needs.

    Social media allows two-way communication with researchers, doctors and others who can help us to rise to the challenge that patient communities set for us.

    That is why we have opened a new Facebook page; a place where we can share experiences and hear from the public, as well as a platform for showing what we are doing to provide answers by applying the latest scientific knowledge.

    Of course, it is not the only social media network where we are active! We have an active corporate presence on Twitter, a recruiting channel on LinkedIn, and a YouTube channel where we host videos about the diseases with which we work and the amazing research our teams lead here at UCB.

    If you are on any of these networks, follow us to learn more about what inspires us and drives us forward. And keep checking in with UCB.com for regular updates in the UCB Stories section.

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    <![CDATA[Family planning for women with immunological conditions]]> Family planning for women with immunological conditions]]>Posted by Lode Dewulf, Patient Affairs .
    For women living with immunological...]]>

    They wonder if and how their disease may affect their fertility; if and how their autoimmune condition may affect their pregnancy; whether medicines taken for their disease before and during pregnancy might affect their baby; how pregnancy may affect their disease during and after the pregnancy itself; whether breastfeeding is advisable ?and many more such questions, all of which can be very scary and worrying.

    Why is this such an important issue? Take rheumatoid arthritis, for example. The disease can strike at any time and affects both genders. But it is often diagnosed in middle age (typically between 30 and 60 years) and is typically much more frequent in women than men. In up to one woman in five, it may start before the age of 30.

    For a woman dealing with the news that she has rheumatoid arthritis, her mind may quickly turn to how this will impact her family or family plans. In the past, she may have been left with more questions than answers.

    The US Food & Drug Administration has published changes to the labeling regulations for pregnancy, lactation, and reproductive potential. This ‘Pregnancy and Lactation Labeling Final Rule (PLLR)?sets new standards for how information about using medicines during pregnancy and breastfeeding is presented in the labeling of prescription drugs and biological products in the US. The aim is to provide a more consistent, useful and organized way to include more relevant information about the benefits and risks of prescription drugs and biological products used during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

    This, coupled with forthcoming presentations at EULAR, recently published “Points to consider for use of anti-rheumatic drugs before and during pregnancy and lactation?from a EULAR (European League Against Rheumatism) taskforce on reproduction and pregnancy in rheumatic diseases and recent publications in Europe such as the article by Østensen et al., “State of the art: Reproduction and pregnancy in rheumatic diseases? means that the standards of care for women with immunological disorders are rising on both sides of the Atlantic.

    UCB took the decision to launch an initiative in 2012 focused on Family Planning and Pregnancy in Immunological Diseases. The goal was to enhance awareness and improve understanding, thus stimulating research and encouraging meaningful discussions between patients and physicians.

    In doing this we were stepping up to play an important role in an area where we could see leadership was required, because for decades there had not been enough attention for these very real issues that patients were facing. This is an issue that we understand well because it affects the lives of many of the patients we strive to support. We knew, from listening to healthcare professionals, patients and their families that working on this topic would be of considerable value.

    We are pleased that we took the initiative three years ago and are committed to keeping this issue on the agenda so that standards of research, knowledge and practice may continue to rise and help improve the lives of both women and men, living with immunological and other severe diseases. The topic of medicines and pregnancy is now on the map and we intend to continue contributing to this important endeavour.

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    <![CDATA[UCB recognised for science and skills]]> UCB recognised for science and skills]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, UK Communications.
    UCB is Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. What this boils down to is a commitment by our people to use...]]>
    UCB is Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. What this boils down to is a commitment by our people to use our skills and knowhow to meet the needs of people with severe diseases.

    This commitment was recognised at the 3rd annual Cogent Sciences Awards in London. The initiative celebrates those who have excelled in contributing to the development of skills within the life sciences sector.

    It was a big night for UCB. Last year UCB was delighted to take home the prestigious Employer of the Year Award. This year, we did it again.

    Winning this award for a second consecutive year, in a sector with so many strong employers, is a huge achievement and says a great deal about the value our company places on skills.

    UCB seeks to attract talented scientists and support their development so that our teams can truly work at the cutting edge of research and drug development.

    Our scientists ?at senior and trainee level ?were also recognised for their contribution to the sector. UCB senior principal scientist, Rachel Garlish, was selected as the winner in the "Outstanding Leadership in Skills" Award, and UCB scientist Stephanie Smith was shortlisted for the "Advanced Apprentice in R&D" award.

    Investing in training and development are good for our bright young researchers as well as the established investigators leading our teams. It's good for the company's capacity to address patient need. And it's good for patients who rely on our excellence to improve the quality of their lives.

    Recognition of this at the Cogent Sciences Skills Awards inspires us continue to value and nurture scientific skills.

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    <![CDATA[What funding is available from UCB?]]> What funding is available from UCB?]]>Posted by Catherine Begard, Information Intelligence & Integrity .
    UCB is Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. This means listening to people affected by severe diseases and... ]]>
    UCB is Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. This means listening to people affected by severe diseases and harnessing the power of medical research to meet their needs.

    In our own labs we work on deepening scientific knowledge so that we can understand how the body works and what to do when it doesn’t.

    We also support a variety of initiatives through our external funding programmes. To make it easier to find out about the kinds of support we offer, we have developed a new Funding section on our site.

    So for what types of funding can you apply?

    We provide Donations to a range of organisations and institutions who share our dedication to raising awareness of severe diseases, advancing medical knowledge and building strong communities in areas where we operate.

    Our Investigator-Initiated Studies (IIS) programme supports unsolicited and independently initiated and conducted studies. Sometimes scientists request funding, sometimes they need supply of our medicines, and sometimes they require both.

    UCB provides Grants for programmes that foster increased understanding of scientific, clinical, and healthcare issues that contribute to the enhancement of patient care.

    In addition, we accept requests for Sponsorships to support activities which further medical and scientific knowledge. In return, UCB receives benefits such as opportunities to promote our products, our company, and/or specific disease awareness activities.

    To apply for support under one of these headings, visit our Funding page and find out more about our funding opportunities. We receive a lot of requests and, of course, cannot support every application; however, we are committed to reviewing all requests according to our review criteria.

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    <![CDATA[Dance therapy helping Parkinson's patients in Ukraine]]> Dance therapy helping Parkinson]]>Posted by Ekaterina Moskalenko, Medical Affairs Ukraine.
    Research shows that regular exercise...]]>

    Dance therapy is already used for patients with movement disorders in the US and Europe but is relatively new in Ukraine. Since late last year, UCB has been supporting dance classes for PD patients in collaboration with the National Gerontology Institute and the Ukrainian Association of Movement disorders.

    Borrowing elements from rumba, tango and other popular dancing styles, people with Parkinson's enjoy the regular exercise and social interaction the dance classes can bring.

    Some patients had difficulty taking even a few steps at the beginning of the programme but have improved significantly since. They are highly motivated and dancing appears to have a positive psychological impact.

    The effects have been so startling that healthcare professionals in Ukraine have begun to study dancing more closely. Neurologists have evaluated PD symptoms of patients taking dance classes and are comparing this group with a control group of PD patients on traditional exercise programmes.

    The study is ongoing but so far the investigators have observed improvements in movement initiation, balance, stride length and the psychological wellbeing in the dance group. All of this adds up to real improvements in quality of life.

    <span style="font-style:italic;">Researchers from Ukraine's National Gerontology Institute have kindly shared the short film which was produced to mark World Parkinson’s Day.</span>

    ]]>
    <![CDATA[Raising awareness of lupus]]> Raising awareness of lupus]]>Posted by Lisa Pisenti, Patient Value Unit - Immunology.
    Lupus is a serious, life-altering autoimmune disease that can affect many organs of the body... ]]>

    That is what makes World Lupus Day (May 10th) so important. This date was set several years ago following agreement by representatives of lupus organisations from 13 different nations.

    It is an opportunity to raise awareness of the symptoms of the disease and its impact on people living with lupus. Awareness events for World Lupus Day are held on most continents of the world including, North and South America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia.

    Lupus patient advocates are calling for improved patient healthcare services, increased research into the causes of and a cure for lupus, enhanced physician diagnosis and treatment of lupus, and better epidemiological data on lupus globally.

    What is lupus?
    Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE or lupus) occurs when the body’s immune system attacks its own healthy tissues and organs. Inflammation caused by SLE can affect many different body systems including the skin, joints, kidneys, blood cells, brain, heart and lungs.

    Lupus has a major impact on the lives of those directly affected, as well as on their families and their wider communities. The disease also takes an economic toll by increasing the use of healthcare resources and reducing ability to work.

    It is estimated that 5 million people throughout the world have a form of SLE, the majority of whom are women aged 15-44. The disease is 10 times more common in women than men, and 2 to 3 times more common in those of African and Asian descent than in Caucasian populations.

    UCB is inspired by the commitment shown by lupus patient advocates and continues to work towards improving the lives of those affected by this severe disease.

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    <![CDATA[Digital innovators rethink epilepsy care]]> Digital innovators rethink epilepsy care]]>Posted by Eimear O'Brien, New Patient Value ?Neurology.
    At UCB we believe that the lives of people living with epilepsy can be improved through innovation... ]]>

    That can mean developing medicines that control seizures, exploring the frontiers of gene research or harnessing the power of supercomputers.

    There are no limits on innovation ?it is about thinking big and collaborating with a broad coalition of partners.

    In keeping with this spirit of openness, we were inspired to create the 'Hack Epilepsy' initiative. 'Hackathons' are an increasingly popular way to apply fresh thinking and creative design to complex problems.

    This epilepsy hackathon, held simultaneously in Brussels and Atlanta from April 24 to April 26, has delivered a number of prototype digital solutions for epilepsy patients.

    UCB_Hack_042415_021










    The goal of Hack Epilepsy was to come up with practical and workable prototypes that answer four broad challenges, including accessing effective support and reliable information, empowering people to talk about their epilepsy, and knowing what questions to ask following diagnosis.

    The event brought together developers, designers and digital experts, along with healthcare providers, people living with epilepsy, neurologists and entrepreneurs to imagine new ways of applying digital technologies that can make a real difference for the epilepsy community. The competition was judged by diverse juries in Atlanta and Brussels. Across both sites there were over 100 participants.

    Brussels
    1st place: Team Helpilepsy
    Personalised notification and detection system that can seek help from specific groups in a geolocalised environment and store all generated data

    2nd place: Team Interruptions    
    Portable, accessible epilepsy simulation experience

    3rd place: Team Aura
    Adaptive seizure alerts and fast context surveys for pattern recognition

    Atlanta
    1st place:  Team BioMarkEP
    Combining mobile technology, wearables and machine learning to discover quantitative biomarkers that could lead to early prediction of an oncoming seizure

    2nd place: Team Recover Epilepsy
    Mobile app for patients to create and deploy their own personalized post-seizure recovery plans and galvanize their care networks seamlessly

    3rd place: Team Neurish
    Social network that enables all epilepsy patients to identify and contact mentors, i.e. patients with similar seizure types who are living successfully with epilepsy.

    For details of the challenges presented at Hack Epilepsy and more information, go to www.hackepilepsy.com.

    ]]>
    <![CDATA[Supporting neuroscience, sharing results]]> Supporting neuroscience, sharing results]]>Posted by Amy Chandler, Public Relations & Communications, UCB, Inc..
    Modern medicine is powered by information. Doctors need data to make informed decisions about which therapy...]]>

    That is why we support research in the disease areas where we excel. At the Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) in Washington DC, April, 18-25, more than 20 presentations of data from UCB-sponsored studies were shared with delegates.

    The AAN's Annual Meeting, now in its 67th year, is among the premier neurology events in the world. It is an ideal venue for providing experts with the very latest information on our therapies for diseases such as epilepsy, Parkinson's disease and restless legs syndrome (RLS).

    The poster presentations addressed a wide variety of patient-centric issues ranging from studies of falls and fractures in older people with Parkinson's disease to research on seizure rates in patients who change epilepsy medication.

    Visitors to the UCB booth in the exhibit hall had the opportunity to meet some of the seizure response dogs from Canine Assistants. UCB is the proud sole sponsor of Canine Assistants seizure response dogs, a programme that provides specially trained service dogs to people with epilepsy.

    Since 2003, UCB’s support of this programme has covered the training and lifetime veterinary care for seizure response dogs for more than 260 people living with epilepsy.

    UCB's strong presence at the AAN meeting reflects our long-held commitment to improving the lives of patients by supporting and sharing new scientific knowledge.

    ]]>
    <![CDATA[UCB off to a good start ]]> UCB off to a good start ]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
    It is on days like this, when we publish revenue and selected net sales for the first quarter of the year...]]>

    And just as this is the result of past R&D, good progress in our pipeline shows encouraging signs for the future.

    So what do the numbers say? Revenue was ?895 million in the first quarter of 2015, up 19% (or 11% at constant currencies). ?433 million came from sales of our three core medicines. Sales of these three core products increased by 36% (or 20% at constant currencies).

    Our established epilepsy drug also brought in sales of ?190 million (+14%; +4% at constant currencies). These four medicines' net sales represent 70% of our Q1 2015 revenue.

    After this good start to the year, I am pleased to say that our financial outlook for 2015 is confirmed. 2015 revenue should reach approximately ?3.55-3.65 billion; recurring EBITDA should increase to approximately ?710-740 million. Core earnings per share (EPS) are expected in the range of ?1.90-2.05 based on an average of 193.7 million shares outstanding.

    You can read more about our Q1 interim report, today's Annual Shareholders' Meeting (please note that dividend payment day is May 6) and other information for investors or contact me directly with your feedback.

    Now if you'll excuse me I need to get go on the road as I will be seeing some of you in Boston (US), Scandinavia and Brussels  ?which are my next destinations for investor outreach: looking forward to continuing the dialogue!

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    <![CDATA[Innovation through collaboration]]> Innovation through collaboration]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, UK Communications.
    Science moves fast. Technology allows us to run more experiments than ever before...]]>

    Making sense of this knowledge requires collaborations between experts from different branches of science, along with industry-academic partnerships, which will shape the future of medical innovation.

    At UCB, we are working with the best researchers in the world to accelerate the pace of medical progress.



    This video was produced to mark the 10-year anniversary of UCB's acquisition of Celltech, a British biotech firm. It focuses on our innovative partnerships in the UK but the central point applies more broadly: we are in this together.

    It is no longer enough to be an expert in one narrow sub-discipline of science; researchers can no longer operate in silos. They need to work with scientists from outside their own areas of expertise.

    Drug development is not a task exclusively for biochemists or immunologists. It requires input from data scientists, bioinformatics experts, bioengineers and geneticists.

    UCB is committed to building super-networks of academics, industry experts, charities, health professionals, patients and payers to inform meaningful medical research that changes people's lives. Together, we will deliver new therapies that patients need.

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    <![CDATA[World Parkinson’s Disease Day ]]> World Parkinson’s Disease Day ]]>Posted by Eimear O'Brien, Brand Communications.
    Saturday April 11th is World Parkinson's Disease Day 2015...]]>
    Saturday April 11th is World Parkinson's Disease Day 2015. This annual awareness day raises awareness of Parkinson's disease and promotes greater understanding of how this condition affects people.

    April 11th was chosen because it is the birthday of Dr James Parkinson, the English physician who described the disease in a paper entitled "An Essay on the Shaking Palsy", published in 1817.

    The symbol of World Parkinson's Disease Day is a red tulip. This dates back to 1980 when J.W.S Van der Wereld, a Dutch horticulturist, developed a red and white tulip. Van der Wereld, who had Parkinson's disease, decided to name his newly-cultivated flower the 'Dr James Parkinson' tulip.

    On April 11, 2005, the Red Tulip was launched as the worldwide symbol of Parkinson's disease at a conference in Luxembourg.

    Highlight symptoms
    It is estimated that 6.3 million people are living with Parkinson’s disease worldwide.

    Many people associate Parkinson's disease with motor symptoms such as tremor, freezing and rigidity. Symptoms tend to appear gradually, normally on just one side of the body at first, although both sides will be affected as Parkinson's progresses.

    People who develop the condition also suffer non-motor symptoms such as fatigue, depression and sleep disturbance.

    For people with Parkinson's disease, the Parkinson’s Well-being Map?/a> can help to monitor and communicate their symptoms to healthcare teams. This visual tool allows patients to track both motor and underlying symptoms.

    Parkinson's Disease Awareness Day is an opportunity to raise awareness of the condition and its symptoms, and improve the lives of patients.

    ]]>
    th is World Parkinson's Disease Day 2015...]]>
    <![CDATA[Making research data truly accessible]]> Making research data truly accessible]]>Posted by Judy Bryson, UCB Biosciences - Immunology TA.
    UCB has been sharing data generated during clinical studies as part of...]]>
    sharing data
    generated during clinical studies as part of a transparency initiative which has been embraced by several pharmaceutical companies.

    We were the first mid-cap biopharma company to sign up to an online portal offering responsible data sharing - the Clinical Study Data Request platform. We officially went live on the site at the beginning of October.

    Sharing data has the potential to accelerate medical innovation by giving researchers access to material which can deepen understanding of disease and cutting-edge therapies.

    The next step in our transparency journey is to  make this medical science also meaningful and accessible to patients and a wider public who are not experts in medical science. UCB is now sharing clinical study results in lay terms (‘lay summaries? via UCB.com. We are among the first companies to embrace this approach to disseminating research.

    Studies considered 'pivotal' to the regulatory approval of several of our current medicines are explained in clear language. The lay summaries concisely outline the purpose of the research project, describe the participants, and explain how the study was conducted and the key findings, all without losing the reader in scientific jargon.

    Going forward, UCB is committed to providing additional study results lay summaries as new products receive regulatory approval.

    We believe that true transparency means making science more accessible and meaningful. We are proud that the fruits of our research help patients around the world every day. Now more people will be able to  build on and better understand the work that took us there.

    ]]>
    <![CDATA[UK scientists team up with UCB in search of new monoclonal antibodies]]> UK scientists team up with UCB in search of new monoclonal antibodies]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, UK Communications.
    UCB and the UK's Medical Research... ]]>

    The MRC has been at the forefront of scientific discovery to improve human health for more than a century. Originally founded in 1913 to help tackle tuberculosis, the Council now invests UK taxpayer's money in medical research.

    Its track record is impressive: 31 MRC-funded researchers have won Nobel prizes and its scientists have been behind the discoveries of vitamins, the structure of DNA and the link between smoking and cancer.

    Under the new initiative, UCB will provide MRC funded UK scientists with access to cutting-edge technologies to discover new monoclonal antibodies. Proteins of this kind, which are produced by immune cells, are already used in treating diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and cancer.

    UCB and MRC are hoping that their collaboration will enable scientists to deepen their understanding of disease, identify new therapeutic targets and kick-start the search for new medicines.

    At the heart of this cooperation will be UCB's high-throughput antibody screening technology which builds on the latest in robotics, data processing and medical science to test large numbers of molecules to see if they have the potential to improve human health.

    By combining technology and scientific expertise, we hope to find antibodies with the right characteristics to prevent or control diseases for which current therapies are not meeting the needs of patients.

    UCB and MRC will work initially for a three-year period on up to five projects per year, all with the shared goal of improving public health and the lives of patients. UK-based academics will be able to submit research proposals to the MRC later this year and these will be independently assessed to select the best proposals.

    ]]>
    <![CDATA[We must do better for Parkinson's patients]]> We must do better for Parkinson]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, UK Communications.
    According to a new UK study - the largest of its kind ever carried out in England... ]]>
    1 - the largest of its kind ever carried out in England - people with Parkinson's are almost 2.5 times as likely to die following an emergency admission. For those aged over 85 years of age, the risk of dying after emergency hospitalisation is 1 in 10.

    There are a variety of reasons why people with Parkinson's are hospitalised. The most common reasons for admission are pneumonia, poor motor control, urinary tract infection or a hip fracture. The study shows that people with Parkinson’s who are admitted as an emergency admission have poor outcomes.

    Longer hospital stays
    The research, conducted by UCB and three leading UK-based experts, also showed that Parkinson’s patients were almost twice as likely to stay in hospital for more than 3 months compared to other patients.

    This means that if you have Parkinson's and have an emergency admission you are also more likely to spend long periods in a hospital bed. On average, the length of stay for emergency admissions in Parkinson's disease was seven days longer than admissions from all other causes.

    For patients and their families, this is a  concern. For the wider society too, it is a burden. The majority of admissions by people with Parkinson are unplanned emergency admissions. They cost the UK health service almost n200 million (?78 million) per year ?around n3,338 (?,647) per patient on average. By contrast, planned hospital stays cost around n1,417 (?,973) per person.

    Many developed countries have ageing populations. Keeping people healthy in their own communities is an important part of running an efficient and sustainable healthy system.

    Parkinson’s UK state that these distressing and costly hospitalisations are potentially avoidable. With the right approach to early interventions and good disease management, the number of emergency hospitalisations for people with Parkinson's can be reduced.

    That would mean fewer people being rushed to hospital, fewer lengthy stays and fewer people dying in hospital.

    By taking a more proactive approach to Parkinson's care we can help to preserve the dignity of people with Parkinson's disease.


    1. Low V, et al., Measuring the burden and mortality of hospitalisation in Parkinson's disease: A cross-sectional analysis of the English Hospital Episodes Statistics database 2009-2013, Parkinsonism and Related Disorders (2015)

    ]]>
    <![CDATA['Purple Day]': how one girl's campaign is raising epilepsy awareness]]> ]]>Posted by Eimear O'Brien, Brand Communications.
    In 2008, Cassidy Megan, a young girl...
    ]]>
    In 2008, Cassidy Megan, a young girl in Canada, wanted to get people talking about epilepsy. She decided to do something about it and the legacy of her initiative has an impact every year.

    'Purple Day], the awareness day she launched, is an annual event for addressing myths, countering stigma and raising awareness.

    Cassidy chose the colour purple because it is the international colour for epilepsy. In some cultures the lavender flower is often associated with solitude, which represents the feelings of isolation felt by many people affected by epilepsy.

    Celebrated on March 26th, it encourages people to wear purple and to hold events where epilepsy is discussed. Above all, it reminds people with epilepsy that they are not alone.

    Purple Day] is supported by The Epilepsy Association of Nova Scotia (EANS) and by the New York-based Anita Kaufmann Foundation, and is a now in its eighth year.

    Playing our part
    At UCB, we continue to play our part to improve the lives of people with epilepsy. For example, we are sponsoring the 'Hack Epilepsy' events which will be held simultaneously in Brussels and Atlanta on April 24-26.

    'Hackathons' are an increasingly popular way to apply fresh thinking and creative design to complex problems.

    This hackathon brings together developers, designers and digital experts, along with healthcare providers, patients and their families, to imagine new ways of applying digital technologies that can make a real difference for the epilepsy community.

    If you are a designer, a developer, a communicator or an entrepreneur, you can join the hackathon in Brussels or Atlanta. All you need is to be 18 years of age and have the skills and the will to create meaningful digital tools that can change lives. Visit the Hack Epilepsy website for more information about registration.

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    <![CDATA[Spanish football stars supporting epilepsy goal]]> Spanish football stars supporting epilepsy goal]]>Posted by Jesús Sobrino, UCB Iberia.
    Spanish football champions Atlético Madrid have lent their support to a UCB epilepsy awareness campaign... ]]>

    The Atlético Madrid Foundation joined doctors, patients and UCB in a series of initiatives to reduce the stigma of epilepsy in Spain. This included one of their players making a video with children who have epilepsy, holding a press conference about epilepsy and highlighting the disease during Atlético's match against Almeria on February 21.



    Around  65 million people worldwide are affected by epilepsy. This includes six million people in Europe, of which 400,000 are in Spain. The disease can occur in people of all ages but, of the 20,000 news cases diagnosed in Spain last year, at least half were recorded during childhood or adolescence.

    UCB works with schools, patients and doctors to increase understanding of the disease and are hugely appreciative of the work that the Spanish champions have done to further this goal.

    To coincide with their game against Almeria, Atlético's Jesús G֙mez made a video with a group of children with epilepsy. The goal was to normalise the disease, as well as to discuss the benefits of sport and how to deal with an epileptic crisis.



    G֙mez promoted the campaign to tens of thousands of his fans on Facebook and Twitter. He also appeared at a press conference before the match alongside representatives from the Atlético Madrid Foundation, the Spanish Epilepsy Federation, a neurologist, three children with epilepsy and Jesús Sobrino, Managing Director of UCB Iberia.

    As well as attracting journalists from high-profile newspapers, radio and television stations, the press event was attended by children who participated in a drawing contest organised by UCB last year.

    During the match itself, epilepsy was given great exposure. During the warm-up and after the half-time interval, a video was shown highlighting the Atlético's Madrid Foundation's support for epilepsy and UCB's campaign to raise awareness among school children.

    Thanks to Atlético, an information brochure was left on the seats of all 55,000 fans attending the game.

    This kind of high-profile campaigning with support from football stars can make a huge difference in how young people view epilepsy.

    Atlético won the game 3-0 but the real winner was epilepsy awareness.

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    <![CDATA[Immunology Summit puts spotlight on the total burden of disease]]> Immunology Summit puts spotlight on the total burden of disease]]>Posted by Natasha de Peyrecave, Medical Immunology Operations Europe.
    There have been extraordinary advances...]]>

    This is the question to be addressed at the Sixth International Immunology Summit, an educational event organised by UCB, which takes place in Prague from 12-14 March.

    The outlook for patients with conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and axial spondyloarthritis has improved greatly. Severe disability has become less common and more patients remain in employment.

    However, patients still face difficulties which may not be addressed by the current approach to managing their disease. For example, pain and fatigue may be a daily problem for patients even if some of the primary symptoms of their movement disorder are being well managed.

    For doctors, these issues may not be immediately apparent. That is why the Immunology Summit is putting the spotlight on the total burden of chronic diseases in patients' lives.

    The event captures the essence of UCB's tagline ?Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. We aim to support scientists and healthcare professionals to apply cutting-edge knowledge in a way that meets the needs of patients.

    Entitled "Optimising Management of Musculoskeletal Diseases: Treating the ‘Human?and the ‘Being?, the summit is bringing together more than 500 experts to explore what matters most to patients and look at ways for healthcare professionals to respond.

    Led by experts
    The Immunology Summit programme was put together by a faculty of over 40 experts, led by Professor Peter Taylor, University of Oxford, UK, who chairs the group.

    The event will feature debates, panel discussions, case studies and hands-on workshops, as well as plenaries and mini-symposia sessions, and an opportunity to meet with faculty and one another in small groups.

    The plenary sessions from the event will be streamed live, making it accessible to registered healthcare professionals with an interest in this topic who are unable to make it to Prague.

    The Summit builds on the work of previous editions. Over the last six years it has evolved from focusing on understanding autoimmune diseases and discussing treatment guidelines to treating to target and optimising management.

    This year for the first time the dedicated Summit website will host an immunology refresher course for attending healthcare professionals as well as an optional survey to assess baseline knowledge and attitudes ahead of the event.

    Following the Summit, videos of the plenary sessions as well as other interactive immunology activities will be available online for attendees.

    For an introduction to the Sixth International Immunology Summit visit the video.


    ]]>
    <![CDATA[Sharing medical knowhow, boosting patient care]]> Sharing medical knowhow, boosting patient care]]>Posted by Steffen Fritzsche, Corporate Communications Germany.
    UCB is Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. We believe in applying the latest scientific knowledge to improve...]]>
    Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. We believe in applying the latest scientific knowledge to improve patients' lives.

    That is why we support medical professionals in keeping up to date with the best in clinical practice.

    The annual UCB "CNS Dialogues" event has become a fixture in the calendars of many neurologists in Germany, as well as some in Austria and Switzerland.

    Held every January in Munich, it is an opportunity for doctors to hear from top speakers in their field and take part in workshops on hot topics. It is one of the highest profile neurology education meetings in Germany.

    Patients may not be aware of the work their specialists put in to stay on top of the latest in medical knowledge but we have seen first-hand how strong the demand is for top-notch medical education.

    This year's event, which took place on January 17 and 18, focused on epilepsy and movement disorders. Most of the 234 doctors who attended were office-based neurologists. While hospital-based doctors have access to various forms of education, we see a special need for providing continuous medical education opportunities for specialists who run their own practices.

    Doctors appreciate this greatly as can be seen from the high response rate we received to the invitations we sent out. As is the case in many countries, specialists must complete a certain number of hours of accredited medical education every year. As "CNS Dialogues" is accredited by the authorities, neurologists can partially fulfill their training obligations by attending.

    Neurologists tell us that they attend every year because they pick up valuable tips and recommendations from experts which can be applied to their daily practice. According to the German Section of the International  League against Epilepsy around 30% of epilepsy patients do not respond to the drug treatment proposed by their doctor but by trying other options, even patients who initially had difficulty finding the right treatment can become seizure free. This is the result we all want to achieve.

    We also know that the 234 doctors we welcomed to Munich this year share their expertise locally with other health professionals, multiplying the impact of our two-day session. Ultimately this helps to increase the standards of care that patients receive.

    Given the success of this, the sixth annual "CNS Dialogues" event, we look forward to planning another event next January. This is what neurologists ask of us and patients can find it reassuring that their doctors are keen to stay on top of the latest in medical science.

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    <![CDATA[Reflecting on 2014]]> Reflecting on 2014]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
    For us Investor Relations professionals, preparation of the full-year financial results are a time for reflection as well...]]>

    As we analyse the numbers, we can see which of our medicines are driving revenues, review progress in our development pipeline, and see whether the company is on track to meet the targets we set ourselves.

    In 2014, sales of UCB's three core medicines grew by 24% and now account for 50% of our net sales.

    You might recall that in 2012 we reached an inflection point which saw sales of these products eclipse those of UCB's established epilepsy drug. Now their combined sales are as great as the sales of all of our other medicines.

    Of our ?3 344 million in total revenue, ?1 468 million came from these three drugs. While our total revenue grew by 7%, growth was much stronger for our core products.

    These medicines are now reaching more patients than ever before and tracking towards our long-term sales targets. We are also on track to achieve competitive profitability in 2018.

    Meanwhile, we are advancing the next wave of new potential solutions for patients. We invested ?928 million, or 28% of our revenue, in research and development into potential solutions in epilepsy, lupus and osteoporosis as well as in our early clinical pipeline which now comprises five new molecules in early stage. Among them is a new potential compound to treat lupus which reported positive phase 1 results at the end of 2014.

    At the same time, we recorded a lower overall operating expenses ratio, hence improving profitability.

    To me, all of this means we are meeting our commitments to deliver value to patients through innovative medicines and patient solutions as well as meeting our commitment to deliver value to our shareholders.

    I hope the flu is behind you or has not touched you and yours ?stay healthy!

    If you have a comment or question on our 2014 financial results, please let me know: Antje.Witte@ucb.com

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    <![CDATA[Disease classification must catch up with science]]> Disease classification must catch up with science]]>Posted by Duncan McHale, Global Exploratory Development .
    We all owe a great debt to 19th century medicine. This was a period when doctors began to apply some of the knowledge... ]]>
    th century medicine. This was a period when doctors began to apply some of the knowledge emerging from medical science to help diagnose and treat common illnesses.

    It saw rapid advances in combatting infectious disease, in the use of anaesthesia and in medical statistics. Medical education, specialisation and research developed, laying the foundation for major progress in the 20th century.

    Of course, as with all science, the ideas proposed and tested at the time remain open to ongoing scrutiny. In recent decades, advances in genetics and molecular biology have deepened our understanding of the underlying causes of ill-health.

    19th century thinkers did not have this privilege. When they sought to classify diseases (itself a somewhat revolutionary idea we now take for granted), they did so based on patients' symptoms.

    This, from a 19th century perspective, was perfectly reasonable. Symptoms were observed, conditions were described, and diseases could be categorised. From there, medical specialties developed whereby physicians would treat groups of patients with broadly similar symptoms such as joint pain or dementia.

    That was then. Today we can see that the 19th century approach to disease classification was imperfect. We now know, for example, that not every patient with joint pain is the same even if their symptoms appear to be similar.

    Some are suffering as a result of mechanical stress on their joints while others have an underlying inflammatory disease which may, in fact, be more closely related to other autoimmune diseases than to wear and tear.

    This matters because people with the same symptoms can respond differently to treatment depending on the mechanism underlying their disease.

    Yet the revolution in biomedical science which has delivered modern 21st century therapies has not yet been followed by a revolution in how we classify disease. If we fail to rethink this, we cannot expect to develop new therapies which radically transform the lives of all patients.

    New approach
    There are reasons for optimism. We understand the underlying causes of diseases like never before. We now have new tools which help us to unlock the potential of large volumes of clinical data, imaging, biomarker and genetic data to unveil patterns which would otherwise go unseen.

    A recent paper in the journal Nature Reviews which I  co-authored highlights two significant projects in this field undertaken by the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI). The IMI is a public-private partnership co-funded by the EU and Europe's research-based pharmaceutical industry.

    Together with its academic partner UCB is jointly leading the IMI’s AETIONOMY project which looks at classifying neurodegenerative conditions, particularly Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.

    Working with academics and other companies, we are collecting and organising the large volumes of molecular data and information on symptoms. Based on this, the project aims to classify patient groups based on the underlying cause of their disease. The result will be new tools which can be used by the biomedical community to develop new treatments and diagnostic tests.

    UCB is also leading the sister IMI project which aims to reclassify lupus, connective tissue diseases and rheumatoid arthritis. The PRECISESADS research consortium is drawing on the power of bioinformatics and OMICs to identify new classifications for diseases known to share common pathophysiological mechanisms.

    These projects have the potential to feed into the development of a new 'taxonomy' of disease ?a brand new classification system.

    It is an ambitious goal but the reward would be huge. Smarter disease classification would help doctors to select therapies with greater confidence of success. For patients, this would mean less trial and error in search of the right treatment.

    This in turn offers the promise of higher success rates in drug development, attracting greater investment which increases the likelihood of new cures.

    From a societal and economic point of view, treating illness quickly and effectively saves resources and, by intervening early, may reduce the impact on patients' lives.

    Reimagining how we categorise diseases will not be easy but it will be worth it.

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    <![CDATA[1st International Epilepsy Day]]> 1st International Epilepsy Day]]>Posted by Eimear O'Brien, Brand Communications.
    Today, February 9, marks the first ever International Epilepsy Day... ]]>

    From now on, every second Monday in February will be International Epilepsy Day, offering epilepsy patients and medical organisations an opportunity to highlight the problems faced by patients, their families and carers in every region of the world.

    IBE and ILAE have representatives in more than 120 countries around the world, making this a truly global event.

    The organisers are keen for all stakeholders to join together and speak with one global voice and have set a number of key objectives:
    • to raise awareness of the disease at international and government level as well as in the general public
    • to strengthen the epilepsy movement by uniting epilepsy associations in a worldwide campaign
    • to raise visibility on epilepsy and encourage discussion about epilepsy
    • to provide epilepsy associations with a significant fundraising opportunity.
    Designing a logo
    To create an attractive logo that represents this global campaign, the IBE and ILAE launched a Logo Competition. As well as helping to raise the profile of International Epilepsy Day, the contest provided organisers with a logo that perfectly represented the message they wanted to share.

    The winning entry, by Mas Gustian, features colourful human silhouettes representing people coming together in pursuit of a common goal: to care for, and to understand, people with epilepsy.
    International_Epilepsy_Day_02

    Going social
    This unprecedented global event includes a strong social media campaign designed to get the word out and inspire the general public to engage in awareness-raising activities.

    There will be a worldwide effort to get #epilepsyday to trend on Twitter and other social media sites. Social media users will also be encouraged to post a photo on themselves in a famous location while holding a card with the #epilepsyday hashtag written on it.

    Everyone can play their part in helping this inaugural awareness day get off to a great start. For more information visit www.epilepsy.org.

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    <![CDATA[How real-time data can make medicine smarter]]> How real-time data can make medicine smarter]]>Posted by Dolors Terricabras, Patient Solutions Team.
    Improving the lives of people with severe diseases is a goal UCB shares with physicians and patient groups...]]>

    Take movement disorders, for example. For one patient, controlled daytime tremor could be a priority. For another, getting a good night's sleep might trump everything else. Yet they both might be prescribed the same medicine regimen.

    Remembering that each patient is unique is essential to meeting their individual needs. This personal approach is starting to be made possible by new technologies which give real-time individual feedback on a patient's condition and how they are responding to medication. This allows doctors to make appropriate adjustments in order to optimise the patient's care.

    Last year UCB announced a new collaboration with MC-10, an innovative start-up that is creating wearable technologies.

    The objective for the collaboration is to harness the potential of the flexible electronics that MC-10 has developed to provide physicians and patients information on the effect a medicine has on the patient, and use that information to better tailor the medicine to the patient’s needs.

    In this video, recorded at the CES 2015 conference ?a major consumer technology event with 160,000 attendees ?Dr James Zackheim, UCB Vice President, and Dr Nirav Sheth of MC10, discuss the partnership between the two companies. James and Nirav participated in a panel discuss at the Digital Health Live event at CES, focusing on how collaboration between the technology sector and healthcare companies can drive advances in health.



    As James explains, patients and physicians are more likely to meet their goal if they can check in regularly and measure progress. "If you only check status every six months, you're less likely to reach your target."

    UCB's partnership with MC10 has the potential to deliver a more personal approach to care. MC10 is a university spin-out company that makes extremely thin and flexible wearable electronics ?go to the 2-minute mark in the video to see what this technology looks like.

    James believes that the opportunities presented by these new technologies "will rewrite the textbooks".

    These gains will come in two ways. Not only will individual patients benefit from a more responsive and personal approach to treatment, population-level data will inform the decisions of payers and governments.

    Whatever way you look at it, healthcare is about to get a whole lot smarter ?and that can only be good for patients.

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    <![CDATA[Rising to the challenge of Alzheimer's ?together ]]> Rising to the challenge of Alzheimer]]>Posted by Michael Gold, CNS Practice.
    Most of us know someone affected by dementia, a condition most often due...
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    Dementia begins subtly with one forgetting things, misplacing items and having trouble concentrating. As the disease progresses and brain function falters, people with Alzheimer's lose their ability to communicate, to recognize their loved ones and to remain independent ?much to the distress of the patient and their families.

    Around 44.4 million people were living with dementia in 2013 and 7.7 million new cases are diagnosed globally every year. With  life expectancy increasing and global population growth, it is estimated that 135.5 million people will suffer from dementia by 2050.

    Researchers have been studying this neurodegenerative disease for decades and although our understanding of the problem has improved, the damage done by dementia is still irreversible and there are no approved treatments which halt its progress.

    This is unlikely to be due to lack of effort or investment. In fact, many attempts have been made to develop ways to treat or prevent diseases such as Alzheimer's. A breakthrough would be of huge social and economic value but, so far, no therapies have made it through clinical trials.

    Old problem, new thinking
    It is against this backdrop that academics and companies in Europe are taking a different approach to this huge and complex problem.

    The new five-year European Prevention of Alzheimer’s Dementia (EPAD) Initiative has been launched under the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI). This collaborative research project brings together 35 partners with expertise in this area.

    Instead of academics or companies running several separate drug development trials in parallel, EPAD will establish a European-wide register of 24,000 participants from which 1,500 will be invited to participate in a trial.

    These individuals will be in the early stages of Alzheimer's and will test a number of promising preventative therapies.

    All of the data collected during the study will be made publicly available. This will help to improve understanding of how the brain develops before dementia takes hold.

    Innovation through collaboration
    UCB is playing an active role in this consortium and is a strong supporter of this collaborative approach to open innovation.

    The Innovative Medicines Initiative is the world's largest public private partnership in the life sciences with a budget of ?.276 billion over the next decade.  It brings together funding and expertise from the EU, academic institutions and members of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) ?of which UCB is an active member. In fact, our recently retired CEO, Dr Roch Doliveux serves as chairman of the IMI.

    Tackling shared problems such as dementia requires the combined power of industry and academia. We look forward to applying our expertise in the areas of drug development and the central nervous system (CNS). Finding innovative solutions for patients through science is why we exist.

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    <![CDATA[Could gene research unlock new epilepsy therapies? ]]> Could gene research unlock new epilepsy therapies? ]]>Posted by Rafal Kaminski, Neurosciences Therapeutics, Epilepsy.
    If we want to solve complex medical and scientific problems, new approaches to research... ]]>

    This is true of epilepsy where, despite major improvements in disease management in recent decades, about one third of people with epilepsy still live with uncontrolled seizures. This is because none of the currently available treatments work for them.

    Clearly, fresh thinking is required if we want to improve quality of life for all people living with epilepsy.

    One area that holds great promise is genetics. Understanding the genetic causes of epilepsy can help scientists to find new targets for innovative therapies.

    However, the genetics of epilepsy is far from simple. It is not a question of finding a single 'epilepsy gene'. There are potentially hundreds of genes involved in epilepsy. Figuring out how these genes work together to cause the disease is an enormous challenge that requires collaboration between leading researchers in universities and industry.

    That is why UCB is working with academics from Imperial College London on what is known as a 'systems genetics' approach to studying epilepsy.

    Instead of studying individual genes, which has been the approach in epilepsy gene research until now, scientists developed a new technique that allows them to study multiple genes and explore how they work together.

    The project draws on preclinical studies using animal models which enhanced understanding of the link between genetics and the frequency and severity of seizures. Building on a large database of preclinical information, researchers at Imperial College London studied genetic samples from the brains of epilepsy patients.

    By combining this preclinical animal research with data from real people living with epilepsy, scientists have identified genes which are potential targets for future medicines. The first results of this major collaborative project have just been published in Nature Communication, a high-impact research journal.

    The paper reports that a single gene coordinates a network of around 400 genes involved in epilepsy. While this work continues, and it is still early days, the scientists at Imperial College London suggest that developing new medicines targeting this influential gene has the potential to offer new therapies for patients.

    This new way of studying multiple genes could mean an entirely new way of approaching epilepsy therapy. Existing epilepsy medications treat the symptoms of epilepsy; they suppress seizures. But this genetic research could open the door to treating the underlying disease. Watch this space.

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    <![CDATA[New year, new homepage]]> New year, new homepage]]>Posted by Nathalie Vandenbruaene, Global Communications & Change Support.
    A new year is a great time for a fresh start. Here at UCB.com, we have taken the opportunity to launch a new homepage...]]>

    5 01 2015_17 06 46














    So why did we decide to revisit the homepage?

    For a start, we want to bring you more content and improve our capacity to focus on specific features or activities that we think you will appreciate.

    Secondly, we want our site to be easier for you to navigate. There is a lot of material on the website and our readers are a diverse group ?patients, healthcare professionals, journalists, investors,... The homepage is our most popular page. You should be able to find what you are looking for with ease, and UCB.com should guide you to key content.

    Finally, we want to have an attractive and modern homepage which presents gateways to large amounts of information while remaining clear and well organised.

    A number of changes ?some major, some minor ?have been introduced. There are six new clickable images which bring you to different parts of the website, including disease pages and the 'About' section.

    Some of the most popular elements of the site have been retained and improved. For example, our 'Magazine' section has been renamed 'UCB stories', and we have kept the 'Latest News' and 'UCB Worldwide' features.

    There are new items too. 'In Focus' allows us to put the spotlight on new content on a regular basis, while videos embedded from our YouTube channel offer a dynamic and visual dimension to the homepage.

    Our 'Careers' and 'Investor Relations' sections ?both popular with readers ?come with dropdown menus which make it easier for you to find what you need.

    We hope you will enjoy the new-look homepage and would be delighted to hear any feedback or suggestions you may have.

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    <![CDATA[Opening up more research data]]> Opening up more research data]]>Posted by Judy Bryson, UCB Biosciences - Immunology TA .
    At UCB we are delivering on our commitment to improving access to research data... ]]>

    We want to open up more of the data generated during clinical trials while remaining committed to preserving patient privacy. This kind of responsible transparency has the potential to accelerate medical innovation ?something which is at the core of what we do.

    UCB was the first mid-cap biopharma company to sign up to an online portal offering responsible data sharing ?the Clinical Study Data Request platform. We officially went live on the site at the end of October. Researchers can use this system to submit research proposals and request anonymised data from clinical studies listed on the site.

    At the end of August we produced a series of tables on clinical trials and made them available on ucb.com. This feature allows researchers to select one of our drugs from a drop-down menu and view information from clinical studies. This enables free access to dozens of UCB-sponsored studies on individual products, making them all available in a single place.

    The data provided is from interventional studies, phase 2 to 4, which started after January, 1, 2004. For each study, information on the disease area, study type and recruitment status are provided.

    There is also a link to the protocol information on www.clinicaltrials.gov and, if available, on the www.clinicaltrialsregister.eu. Further results will be added as they become available.

    We believe the spirit of openness that this demonstrates will help researchers, academics and, ultimately and most importantly, patients with severe diseases.

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    <![CDATA[How common is epilepsy?]]> How common is epilepsy?]]>Posted by Amy Chandler, Public Relations & Communications UCB, Inc..
    To understand the far reaching impacts of a severe disease and meet the needs of people affected by it...]]>

    Results of a new study conducted by UCB and Department of Neurology at Emory University School of Medicine provide fresh insights into epilepsy prevalence and incidence in the United States. As part of a research collaboration seeking to advance the understanding of the burden of epilepsy, UCB and Emory conducted the most comprehensive analysis of epilepsy prevalence and incidence in the U.S. to date.

    The results, presented at the 68th Annual Meeting of the American Epilepsy Society (AES) in Seattle, Washington (December 5th ?9th), are based on a large-scale analysis of insurance claims data from 2007 to 2011. Researchers from UCB and Emory studied data from more than 20 million individuals of all ages across the U.S.

    According to the new study, the overall age-adjusted prevalence estimate is 8.4 cases of epilepsy per 1,000 population, which is within the range of other estimates published from developed countries.

    The age-adjusted incidence estimate is 79.1 per 100,000 population. The estimated annual epilepsy incidence revealed in this study is distinctly higher than the typical estimated incidence rates reported in population-based studies, although the age distribution is similar to those of other studies. These weighted estimates also found substantially higher rates of epilepsy incidence among people younger than 5 years or older than 60 years.

    This project was a direct response to the Institute of Medicine’s recommendation to more accurately assess epilepsy burden in the U.S. as laid out in its 2012 report, Epilepsy Across the Spectrum. Epilepsy prevalence statistics in the U.S. were last updated in the 1990s, and previous estimates of epilepsy prevalence and incidence have historically been based on limited data from potentially unrepresentative localities and patient populations.

    These results may help inform national public health policies with the aim of better addressing the impact of epilepsy on individual patients and families. Ultimately, UCB and Emory are seeking to advance the understanding of epilepsy burden, management and outcomes and potentially reveal new, evidence-based opportunities to raise the standard of care in epilepsy.

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    <![CDATA[New partnership to improve epilepsy care]]> New partnership to improve epilepsy care]]>Posted by Chris Clark, US Corporate Affairs.
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    Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. UCB's tagline sums up our approach to improving the lives of people with severe diseases.

    This means working with a broad range of partners to find new solutions built on cutting edge technology. The spirit of open innovation is what inspires our collaboration with universities, biotech firms, Nobel Prize winners?teams, and the Innovative Medicines Initiative, an EU public-private partnership.

    This can be seen in our new partnership with the Georgia Institute of Technology’s Interoperability and Integration Innovation Lab (I3L). Together, we are seeking to tap into the potential of big data for the benefit of epilepsy patients.

    We believe advances in computer technology can be harnessed to turn large volumes of anonymous patient data into real-time insights. The goal is to unlock the potential of predictive analysis to help doctors make the best possible treatment decisions for people living with epilepsy.

    This is not the first time we have teamed up with an external partner to embrace big data. Last year we announced a collaboration with a major IT organisation to explore how cognitive computing could help healthcare providers to deliver highly personalized care for people with epilepsy.

    That proof-of-concept study looked at how the transformative power of Big Data  might be used to deliver advances in epilepsy care while potentially contributing to reduced healthcare costs. Our new project with Georgia Institute of Technology will build on this work to examine how these analytics capabilities can be applied in the clinic.

    As a leader in epilepsy treatment, UCB brings significant expertise to this partnership. The I3L Lab will supply access to an extensive collection of health IT resources and collaborators.

    This, the latest chapter in our epilepsy story, illustrates our commitment to innovation for the benefit for patients.

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    <![CDATA[UCB at American Epilepsy Society meeting]]> UCB at American Epilepsy Society meeting]]>Posted by Amy Chandler, Public Relations & Communications UCB, Inc..
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    The American Epilepsy Society is one of the oldest neurological professional organisations in the US. In keeping with its mission ?'Working towards a world without epilepsy' ?the Society encourages experts to share scientific and clinical knowledge about epilepsy in children and adults.

    UCB is also pleased to contribute to this annual meeting through an exhibit booth and 24 UCB-sponsored presentations. These include a late-breaking abstract with data from a phase three clinical trial evaluating an investigational medicine for the adjunctive treatment of partial-onset seizures in adults with epilepsy. The presentations also include results from UCB’s innovative epilepsy research collaborations with experts in industry, government and academia.

    AES will also be an opportunity for UCB to showcase its support of  programmes for people living with epilepsy and their loved ones. Visitors to the UCB booth in the exhibit hall will have the opportunity to meet some of the seizure response dogs from Canine Assistants. UCB is the proud sole sponsor of Canine Assistants seizure response dogs, a programme that provides specially trained service dogs to people with epilepsy. Since 2003, UCB’s support of this programme has covered the training and lifetime veterinary care for seizure response dogs for more than 250 people living with epilepsy.

    UCB will also be highlighting the 10 years of the UCB Family Epilepsy Scholarship Program?in its booth. UCB has awarded more than $1.5 million in educational grants to more than 300 people living with epilepsy, family members and caregivers who demonstrate academic ambition and personal achievement and are pursuing higher education.

    UCB has a rich heritage in epilepsy with over 20 years of experience in the research and development of antiepileptic drugs and a longstanding history of support unique programmes for people with epilepsy and their families. The research and programmes that will be featured at the AES meeting in Seattle illustrate our dedication to collaborating with the epilepsy community to raise the standard of care for the patients we all serve.

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    <![CDATA[Introducing 'My RLS Monitor™']]> Introducing ]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Solutions Team.
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    The monitor allows patients to record and monitor RLS symptoms, to assess the effect of their current RLS medications and to detect factors that might have caused a worsening of RLS.

    The monitor can help to detect augmentation ?a major complication of long-term dopaminergic treatment.

    Patients can use My RLS Monitor&trade; to prepare for their next consultation. The tool allows patients to document all relevant aspects of their condition so that they do not forget anything while speaking to their doctor.

    They record details of the medicines they have taken since their last consultation, any changes they have noticed since their last visit, and exposure to any dietary or emotional factors that might have made them feel worse.

    This will also benefit doctors who will have a comprehensive view of their patient's current wellbeing. It will serve as a map, guiding patient-doctor interactions towards optimal treatment and management of RLS.

    My RLS Monitor&trade; is currently available in Dutch, English, German and Spanish. Produced by UCB, the new tool has been endorsed by RLS e.V, RLS UK and the European Alliance for Restless Legs Syndrome (EARLS).

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    <![CDATA[Playing our part in advancing rheumatology]]> Playing our part in advancing rheumatology]]>Posted by Eimear O'Brien, Brand Communications.
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    The ACR/ARHP Annual Meeting is one of the key events in the rheumatology calendar and is an excellent forum for presenting scientific knowledge and meeting experts from a range of disciplines who share our interest in improving the lives of patients.

    The depth and breadth of presentations highlight our dedicated focus on delivering new and innovative treatment options and support our efforts to improve disease management for people with severe diseases.

    UCB has been a regular attendee at the ACR/ARHP Annual Meeting for several years ?a sign of our solid commitment to people living with  rheumatic diseases. If you are at the event in Boston this week, come and see the presentations or review the posters.

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    <![CDATA[Year of the Brain: a chance to tackle stigma]]> Year of the Brain: a chance to tackle stigma]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, UK Communications.
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    For patient groups and for companies like ours with a long-standing commitment to improving the lives of people with epilepsy, there is a range of ways to make a difference.

    This year UCB has supported scientists in producing, sharing and applying the latest scientific knowledge to deepen our understanding of the disease and how to treat it. For example, we have financially supported the production of a Nature Reviews Neurology 'Focus on Epilepsy' issue which explored current developments in epilepsy and clinical research.

    We are also supporting research on how online networks can support patients living with the disease.

    But we know that while research can move medicine forward, this must come in tandem with progress in public perceptions of the disease.

    Take the UK for example, where around one in 100 people have epilepsy. A UK survey (conducted in 2012 by ComRes for leading charity Quarriers) has shown that 94% of epilepsy patients believe most other people do not know a lot about epilepsy. More than three quarters of those surveyed said the general public makes incorrect assumptions about how epilepsy affects people living with the disease.

    It gets worse. A quarter of people with epilepsy have been accused of faking or exaggerating a seizure and most (69%) worry about how other people would react if they had a seizure in public.

    We support epilepsy awareness days and do what we can to improve understanding. Yet sometimes the most powerful advocates are patients themselves and their messages can be most effective in contexts where they may be unexpected.

    A new British film, "Electricity", is bringing the reality of epilepsy to a wide audience. Based on a book by Ray Robinson, the film could help to change attitudes towards epilepsy by introducing them to a rounded and sympathetic character living with the disease.

    "Electricity" is the story of Lily O'Connor, a young woman with epilepsy who suffers from grand mal seizures since her mother pushed her down the stairs as a small child. Lily, played by model turned actor Agyness Deyn, leaves her home in an English seaside town and heads to London to search for her lost brother.

    The film is dramatic and powerful, presenting epilepsy through a strong but compassionate character that refuses to be defined by her illness and strives to overcome obstacles such as epilepsy.

    The Epilepsy Society provided advice to the producers of the film, ensuring that it is an authentic and accurate portrayal.

    "Electricity" will be in cinemas this winter. Catch it if you can and encourage others to see it before the end of the 'Year of the Brain'.

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    <![CDATA[Open for business, open to innovation ]]> Open for business, open to innovation ]]>Posted by Scott Fleming, UK Communications.
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    At UCB, we do more than talk about open innovation ?we are living it.

    We are opening our new cutting-edge 'robotic lab' to scientists. Through our new Technology Platform Access Programme (TPAP), academic and research groups can work with our custom-built automated antibody discovery platform which is designed to speed up our drug development work and increase our capacity to bring new therapies to patients.

    UCB is actively seeking collaborators interested in the opportunity to participate in our TPAP and work together with us on the discovery of new medicines.

    A new sub-section on our website explains how researchers from outside our company can tap into this technology and work with us to improve patient outcomes.

    The site explains our technology, how it enhances our capabilities, and how to apply to the antibody programme. There is even a section which answers Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

    Patients with severe diseases deserve the best access to innovation no matter where it comes from.They want therapies that meet their unmet medical need.  This is the spirit behind our decision to launch this programme.

    Learn more about the Technology Platform Access Programme.

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    <![CDATA[UCB continues on its growth path]]> UCB continues on its growth path]]>Posted by Antje Witte, Investor Relations.
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    These trends tell a story. One of the first questions reporters from business news wires will ask me is 'What's the story?' They want the big picture; the overall trend. They want to know if the numbers reveal a pattern that points to the company being on course or not.

    Well, the story of our latest report is simple. UCB is progressing along its sustainable growth path, tracking well towards peak sales targets and in line with our 2014 financial targets. Translation: things are broadly going as expected. Revenues are up, driven by double-digit growth of our three core medicines.

    I can tell you that from my point of view this is always welcome news. When we set targets and share our financial outlook with the world, it is based on a hard-headed and sophisticated analysis of a large volume of information from our portfolio of medicines around the world and the environment.

    We know our products and we know our concrete markets but there are still plenty of variables in the equation ?including currencies! ?so it is always welcome to see the numbers tell us that nine months of the way through the year things are in line with expectations.

    But, as Investor Relations officer, my favourite lines in a report like this are 'Financial outlook confirmed' and 'all development projects are tracking well'.

    If you want more information on the report or on UCB and our pipeline, do not hesitate to contact me Antje.Witte@ucb.com.

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    <![CDATA[New biotech plant: welcome to the future]]> New biotech plant: welcome to the future]]>Posted by Amer Jaber, Bio Development & Operations .
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    Measuring around 20,000m2, it is UCB’s first industrial-scale biotechnology production centre. It will produce an innovative therapy which treats the symptoms of Crohn’s disease and various indications of rheumatoid arthritis.

    Regular readers of this UCB magazine will recall that architectural design plans were finalised in 2011 and construction began in 2012. Now, 30 months after building work began, the plant has been formally opened. The first batches will be marketed in 2016 following validation by the international health authorities.

    The opening of the new site means a lot to us. It represents the company's ambition to produce antibody-based therapies to improve the lives of patients, and illustrates UCB's transformation over the past decade into a global biopharmaceutical player.

    It also marks a new chapter in UCB's relationship with Bulle. The company’s connection with Bulle goes back 18 years. The area has many attractions, including a strong track record in the biotech sector and a concentration of world-class research and educational establishments.

    Until now, UCB's production capacity in Bulle has focused exclusively on chemical production but we are now adding a new dimension; a new range of possibilities. The chemical and biotechnology units will work side-by-side on the same campus which, over time, will employ more than 350 people.

    The biotech plant allows us to increase production significantly and respond to patients' growing demand for high quality therapies. It represents our commitment to harnessing scientific expertise to deliver for patients, embodying what UCB is all about: 'Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science'.

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    <![CDATA[Supporting people with osteoporosis]]> Supporting people with osteoporosis]]>Posted by Fiona De Hemptinne, Patient Solutions Team.
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    World Osteoporosis Day is held  every year on the 20th of  October. Osteoporosis is associated with more than 8.9 million fractures worldwide and yet there are many misconceptions about the disease which can be addressed through information and awareness campaigns.

    This annual event launches a year-long campaign dedicated to raising global awareness for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis and metabolic bone disease.

    World Osteoporosis Day began with a campaign launched by the UK's National Osteoporosis Society, supported by the European Commission, in October 1996. It has grown significantly since then and now features activities in over 90 countries around the world.

    The global burden of osteoporosis continues to rise and by 2050, it is estimated that the worldwide incidence  just for hip fractures is projected to increase by 310% in men and 240% in women. This makes it increasingly important that osteoporosis and its consequences, is well understood and that misconceptions are rectified!

    Osteoporosis is sometimes thought of as 'a woman's disease'. However, one in three women over the age of  50 and one in five men over 50 will sustain an osteoporotic-related fracture in their remaining lifetime.

    This is also a misconception that breaking a bone after a minor fall is normal at any age. In fact, adopting a healthy lifestyle that also focuses on bone at all ages is the first step towards prevention. That means a diet that also includes recommended  amounts of calcium and vitamin D along with regular weight-bearing and muscle strengthening exercises, and avoiding adverse lifestyle habits; are all good steps towards potentially avoiding osteoporosis.

    To learn more about osteoporosis, visit the website of the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF), organisers of World Osteoporosis Day.

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    <![CDATA[UCB honoured for work on lupus]]> UCB honoured for work on lupus]]>Posted by Lisa Pisenti, Lupus Patient Solutions Team.
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    The Foundation is a US-based organisation focused on research, education and advocacy. UCB was honored at the event with Prof. Dr. Iris Loew-Friedrich receiving the Corporate Leadership Award for the Company’s pioneering research in the development of new treatments for lupus and commitment to improving the quality of life for those living with the chronic disease.

    The 'Evening of Hope National Gala' in New York City was attended by patients, caregivers, researchers and celebrities. To celebrate the event and to raise awareness of lupus, the Empire State Building was illuminated in purple.

    Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that can mistakenly recognise the body’s own cells as foreign invaders, creating autoantibodies that attack and destroy healthy tissues. It has a major impact on the lives of those directly affected, as well as on their families and their wider communities.

    Lupus, which primarily affects women of child bearing age, can affect any organ of the body including the skin, joints, heart, lungs and brain. As a result there is a tremendous humanistic and economic toll from this disease impacting a patient’s quality of life, reducing the ability to work, and increasing the use of healthcare resources.

    It is for these reasons that UCB continues to  work to bring new therapies to patients and raise awareness of the disease among the public. We will continue to support the lupus community and are encouraged by the appreciation we have received in return.

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    <![CDATA[Supporting World Arthritis Day 2014]]> Supporting World Arthritis Day 2014]]>Posted by Eimear O'Brien, Brand Communications.
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    World Arthritis Day was established in 1996 and has helped to raise the profile of RMDs, as well as support networks of patients and experts around the world. The World Arthritis Day website is managed by EULAR, the European League Against Rheumatism.

    RMDs can reduce quality of life and productivity, requiring increased use of health services and imposing a heavy cost on individuals and communities.

    At UCB we are conscious of the issues affecting people living with rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis and ankylosing spondylitis ?and we are striving to improve quality of life by delivering innovative solutions that have a positive impact for patients.

    The topic for World Arthritis Day in 2014 is healthy ageing for people with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases. It covers the physical and mental changes that occur as part of the ageing process from birth throughout our lifespan and the environmental factors that contribute to quality of life.

    The slogan for this year's campaign is "Living Better, Ageing Well - growing up and growing older with a rheumatic or musculoskeletal disease".

    This is reflected in a competition run by organisers of World Arthritis Day which encouraged people with arthritis to share one idea that would make a difference to their lives.

    Hundreds of people responded with calls for greater understanding, rheumatism health apps, tailored treatments, and a stronger spirit of partnership between patients and their doctors.

    Making lives better is what our work at UCB is all about. World Arthritis Day reminds us of what patients expect from us ?all year round.

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    <![CDATA[Improving access to research data]]> Improving access to research data]]>Posted by Judy Bryson, UCB Biosciences - Immunology TA.
    ]]>

    The data can be used to accelerate medical innovation. At UCB, we want to maximize the potential of information generated during clinical trials while remaining committed to preserving patient privacy.

    That's why UCB has become the first mid-cap biopharma company to sign up to an online portal offering responsible data sharing.

    We have been working with the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) to develop a new approach to clinical trial data transparency and this initiative is a landmark for our industry.

    The new portal, where several large biopharma companies have also become members, will provide access to data from key studies of UCB's core medicines. It allows researchers to request access to anonymised patient-level data and supporting documents from clinical studies to conduct further research. Research proposals are reviewed by an Independent Review Panel.

    This positive step could pave the way for researchers outside UCB to uncover new scientific knowledge or insights. Provided the privacy of those who participated in clinical trials is protected, we are committed to initiatives that can improve the lives of patients.

    We will accept requests for data relating to all clinical studies considered to be 'pivotal' for the purposes of regulatory approval of our core medicines. Requests for access to additional clinical study data will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

    UCB’s policy on data sharing embraces the Principles for Responsible Clinical Trial Data Sharing released by EFPIA and the U.S. pharmaceutical trade association, PhRMA. To know more about our work in this area, see our website.

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    <![CDATA[Can smart wearable sensors help improve care for patients with chronic diseases?]]> Can smart wearable sensors help improve care for patients with chronic diseases?]]>Posted by Dolors Terricabras, Patient Solutions Team .
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    Today, monitoring a patient's condition and checking how they are responding to treatment involves a visit to a hospital or clinic, and physicians making an assessment of the patient’s response to treatment and disease progression, during a pre-scheduled, short consultation appointment.

    However, advances  in wearable technologies that can passively monitor patients, offer a whole new level of objective insights into how chronic diseases affect patients throughout the day and night.

    Health professionals could use information collected from wearable technologies to optimise patients' treatment and care plans. It opens the possibility for a more personalised and responsive approach to patient care, as well as having the potential to accelerate clinical research by allowing scientists to study the real-world impact of therapies.

    Patients could use the information collected from wearable technologies to become more empowered and play a bigger role in the management of their condition.

    Marrying the latest in cutting-edge  knowledge in the field of wearable electronic sensors with solid biopharmaceutical expertise requires partnership. That is why UCB is working with MC10 Inc. to explore the potential of MC10's Biostamp platform.

    MC10 Inc. develops stretchable, electronic sensing systems that bend, flex, and twist to match the properties of the human body.  The Biostamp platform offers a unique, patient-friendly solution for disease monitoring and management.

    This new collaboration is the latest example of UCB’s commitment to partnership, and our willingness to seek innovative solutions for patients wherever they can be found.

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    <![CDATA[What's driving UCB's solid performance?]]> What]]>Posted by Anjte Witte, Investor Relations.
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    One of the questions I have been asked most today is 'What's behind this?'

    I'll come to that in a moment but first, the numbers:

    Revenue was ?,757 million, +6% or +10% at constant currencies. Net profit went up to ?13 million (+65%). Core earnings per share reached ?.22.

    Underlying profitability (recurring EBITDA) grew to ?91 million (+29%) despite headwind from foreign exchange rates. This reflects higher net sales and lower operating expenses - thanks to continuous improvement and constantly striving for improved resource allocation, while R&D expenses remained stable.

    All of this means the financial outlook for 2014 is confirmed. We expect to have total revenue in the range of ?.5-3.6 billion; recurring EBITDA of ?40-770 million; and core earnings per share in the range of ?1.90-2.05.

    So what are the main drivers of this performance? Clearly, our three core medicines are leading the way. Each of them is recording strong double-digit growth and, together, they have delivered combined net sales of ?72 million, a growth of 25%.

    This overcompensates for the anticipated decline in net sales from our established epilepsy medicine which were ?39 million (-6%).

    It was past investments that helped us to bring these core medicines to patients. That is why I would like to mention our R&D: UCB's rich late-state pipeline is getting closer to the next wave of new medicines ?underlined by last weeks?positive headline results for a new epilepsy drug- and has the potential to produce therapies that will grab the headlines in years to come. In addition, we are excited by progress in our early and preclinical pipeline which we hope will lead to new medicines for severe diseases down the line ?check out our new entry in phase 1 and moves into phase 2!

    This is why I view our latest financial report not as a destination in and of itself, but as a milestone along a growth path which we continue to follow.

    Customer orientation is key for all of us at UCB ?I am very impressed that UCB’s Investor Relations and our CFO have come first in Belgium (across all industries) and within the TOP 10 in the European pharma industry by Thomson Reuters Pan-European Extel Survey. Thank you for the supporting votes ?a clear commitment from our side to keep up the good service. Let’s know your feedback for continuous improvement - and enjoy the summer!

    For more information contact Antje.Witte@ucb.com

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    <![CDATA[Want to understand health? Listen to patients]]> Want to understand health? Listen to patients]]>Posted by Laurent Schots, Corporate Online Media & Press Relations.
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    To truly understand a disease, its impact and how to improve patients' lives, you need to listen to the people who have the disease.

    At UCB, we strive to be patient-centric, putting patients at the heart of what we do. In this video, Dr Lode Dewulf, Vice-President, Chief Patient Affairs Officer explains why this is so important.

    Speaking at an event in Barcelona, he says that patient centricity starts with gathering patient insights and learning from them.

    Dr Dewulf discusses the three levels of learning ?intellectual, related and experienced. Applying this to understanding diseases, he explains that only patients can offer insights based on first-hand personal experience.

    "Doctors don't have the disease. If you talk to doctors only you've missed the most impactful and insightful experience of the disease. That and nothing else is the reason why we must turn directly to patients," he says.

    With the growth of digital media providing access to large volumes of data there is an opportunity to learn more about patient experience, says Dr Dewulf.

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    <![CDATA[Introducing the world's largest public-private partnership in the life sciences]]> Introducing the world]]>Posted by France Nivelle, Global Communications & Change Support.
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    The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) is now officially in its second phase. IMI2 has been launched and it is already calling for proposals in areas where new treatments are urgently needed.

    With a budget of ?.276 billion over the next decade, IMI2 promises to bring together funding and expertise from the EU, academic institutions and members of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) ?of which UCB is an active member.

    The IMI2 Strategic Research Agenda draws heavily on the World Health Organization (WHO) report ‘Priority Medicines for Europe and the World?which highlights areas of unmet medical need. IMI2 will also place a greater emphasis on speeding up patient access to new medicines.

    Collaboration is key to making progress on some of the biggest challenges in medical research and drug development where no single organisation, company or country could do it alone.

    UCB is at the heart of the action. Our CEO Dr Roch Doliveux is Chair of the IMI Governing Board ?now in his second year steering this major player in innovation. He correctly describes IMI as a 'smart investment' in the future.

    UCB is already taking part in a number of IMI projects and looks forward to the opportunities for collaboration that will be presented by IMI2.


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    <![CDATA[We listen to patients ?and are inspired]]> We listen to patients ?and are inspired]]>Posted by Steffen Fritzsche, Corporate Communications Germany.
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    Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science. One of the ways we seek inspiration is by talking with people affected by severe diseases. This helps us to understand how they want us to use science to improve their lives.

    That is why UCB Germany hosted our second Patient Summit in Bad Nauheim very recently. The event exemplifies our approach to patient engagement. We are not simply talking about patients ?we are talking with them.

    During two days of passionate and constructive discussion between patient ambassadors and members of the UCB team, we left with a renewed mandate to deliver what patients expect from us.

    The event featured a plenary session as well as several workshops where all participants enthusiastically embraced the opportunity to share ideas and experiences.

    Patients with Parkinson's, restless legs syndrome (RLS), rheumatoid arthritis, epilepsy and ankylosing spondylitis contributed to the workshops where they reflected on the work done since last year's meeting and discussed what needs to be prioritised in the years ahead.

    Examples of the fruit of last year's Patient Summit included the revamp of patient websites, new patient diary supports for Parkinson's patients, and RLS awareness campaigns for GPs. Each of these was an issue proposed at last year's event which has now been addressed. We listened ?and we responded with action.

    This year we also talked about the reasons that some patients stop using their medicines and how patients search for information about their condition. The RLS workshop discussed a new symptoms questionnaire which UCB is currently working on, and the feedback gathered during this session will help to fine-tune this tool.

    Looking ahead, we see patients playing an increasingly important role in how medicines are developed and delivered ?and it is clear that patients expect to have more and more input too.

    Our second successful Patient Summit is one of the practical ways we can live up to our patient-centric philosophy and continue to be inspired.


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    <![CDATA[Reflections on the European Congress on Epileptology]]> Reflections on the European Congress on Epileptology]]>Posted by John-Kenneth Sake, Medical CNS Europe .
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    It really is one of the top events for people like me who are passionate about epilepsy. The first time I went was in 2006 when the congress was held in Helsinki. I was struck by the excellent attendance and how strong the scientific content was.

    The event gets even better each time I attend. The dedication of the scientific committee in preparing the programme and evaluating the data submitted is excellent and, because the ECE is held every two years, there is always something fresh to learn at each congress.

    This scientific rigour and the opportunity to connect with leading specialists, clinicians, academics and patient groups is what makes it so valuable for us at UCB. Supporting medical education is fundamental and we really appreciate meetings of the standard of the ECE because everyone gets something out of it: you learn, you meet new people, and you leave with new ideas and inspiration.

    Highlights this year
    This year there was a strong emphasis on prevention, in the broadest sense of the word. There were presentations on preventing epileptogenesis, preventing potential epileptic events and also exploring what can be done for people who are already diagnosed with epilepsy.

    Other interesting sessions included the role of gene therapy, neuroinflammation and translational medicine ?moving from basic research to the patient's bedside.

    UCB sponsored a symposium which examined how drug treatment choices influence patient outcomes.  Speakers looked at how better patient management with appropriate treatment can influence outcome.

    This patient-centric approach, focusing on real-world data and quality of life, is central to what we're all about. We also shared clinical data from our epilepsy medicines and some scientific research on a potential new therapy which our scientists are working to develop.

    Advocacy opportunities
    Another change I've seen since my first ECE ?and it is particularly evident this year ?is the advances in epilepsy advocacy. Patient associations are doing important work in raising awareness with the public and policymakers.

    The European Brain Council has designated 2014 as the 'Year of the Brain' and epilepsy advocates have had meetings with the European Commission and others to highlight the prevalence of the disease, its impact, and the importance of optimal management.
     
    Large meetings like the ECE are a chance to discuss every aspect of epilepsy and what each of us can do to improve the lives of those affected by the disease.

    It is always an enormously intensive few days, rising early and finishing late. There were so many people to talk with, sessions to attend and posters to see ?but time flew and we left feeling a little tired yet suitably refreshed.
     
    This is what it means to be Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science.

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    <![CDATA[EIB and UCB join forces to accelerate 'best-in-class' research pipeline]]> EIB and UCB join forces to accelerate ]]>Posted by Fabian Seunier, Corporate Merger & Acquisitions.
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    Through this partnership, EIB and UCB have co-designed a new way of funding medical research by which EIB will share the risks and potential rewards inherent to drug development. The Bank's “at risk co-development funding?will make up to ?5 million available for the development of selected UCB compounds. UCB and EIB will engage in the co-development process through a Joint Steering Committee. In return, EIB will receive payments when and if predefined milestones are met. This is inventive in the worlds of finance and research.

    EIB greatly appreciated UCB’s focus on bringing superior value to patients and described UCB's R&D pipeline and drug development expertise as 'best-in-class'. This has been a perfect match to EIB's ground-breaking approach to funding R&D.

    This partnership now allows us to accelerate the development of our promising programmes and we are therefore thrilled that EIB chose UCB as the first company with which it will partner for this innovative funding scheme : successfully completing those developments will bring benefits to UCB, EIB and patients around the world.

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    <![CDATA[Protecting the planet while serving patients]]> Protecting the planet while serving patients]]>Posted by Marc Van Meldert, Corporate Health Safety & Environment.
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    This spirit of working in an environmentally responsible way was seen recently during UCB’s Global Green Planet Day.

    We took the opportunity to remind all our employees that they have an important role to play in reducing UCB’s ecological footprint at our sites around the world. As part of the Green Planet Challenge, we encouraged our staff to suggest ways that our company can make smarter use of  energy and water or avoid waste.

    We are also applying this principle of sustainability when making important decisions about staff travel and distribution of our medicines. A global company like ours makes thousands of choices every day. To me, that means thousands of opportunities to do the right thing.

    This is not simply an annual feel-good call to action: our drive towards a more sustainable way of doing business is yielding tangible results.

    • In 2013 UCB saved 2% of our annual energy usage by implementing energy saving projects
    • 50% of the electricity we use comes from renewable sources
    • Four UCB sites fully rely on green electricity: i.e. Bulle (Switzerland), Monheim (Germany), Braine and Anderlecht (Belgium)
    • We recovered/reused almost 94 % of our waste ?an 8 % improvement on 2010
    • We recycled more than 40% of our waste.
    We still can do better ?and we will. For UCB, a more intelligent ?greener ?approach to doing business makes sense ecologically, socially and economically. Everyone here is invited to play their part.

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    <![CDATA[Reinforcing our commitment to rheumatic diseases]]> Reinforcing our commitment to rheumatic diseases]]>Posted by Natasha de Peyrecave, Medical Affairs Europe.
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    diseases can be a burden on families, employers, insurers and governments.

    In an effort to tackle some of the problems posed by rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis including ankylosing spondylitis, and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), we turn to science for solutions.

    This week thousands of  people with an interest in rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases will attend the 15th Annual European Congress of Rheumatology (EULAR 2014) in Paris, France.

    EULAR is a major event in the calendar of world rheumatology, and is an important forum for UCB to share the latest data on our existing medicines and potential new therapies currently in development.

    We will have 25 sponsored presentations at EULAR and UCB will also support medical education in SLE through an unrestricted educational grant for a symposium at the Congress.

    In addition, we will host two company-sponsored satellite symposia: one on rheumatoid arthritis and the other on spondyloarthritis.

    As ever, we will have a presence in the exhibition hall at a UCB booth where our representatives will be on hand to answer questions and share the latest clinical and scientific data on our medicines for rheumatic diseases.

    Our strong contribution to this congress demonstrates our ongoing commitment to improving the lives of people with severe diseases by advancing scientific knowledge. At EULAR, delegates will see what it means to be Inspired by Patients. Driven by Science.

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    <![CDATA[Sharing solutions for patients with movement disorders]]> Sharing solutions for patients with movement disorders]]>Posted by Elisabeth Dohin, Patient Solutions Team.
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    This annual event is hosted by the International Parkinson & Movement Disorder Society and attracts thousands of experts and researchers with an interest in movement disorders. We will be sharing our expertise in Parkinson’s disease and Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) with attending delegates.

    The scientific programme of the Congress includes five UCB-sponsored poster presentations, three focused on Parkinson’s disease and two on RLS. One of the RLS posters has been selected as one of the best poster presentations of the Congress and will also be presented in an oral session.

    Delegates will also have the opportunity to attend our sponsored symposium where leading experts will discuss "Treatment Strategies to Improve Parkinson’s Disease Patients?Well-Being Throughout Their Journey".

    At congresses of this size, the exhibition hall is always a hive of activity. We will have representatives at our booth to highlight our commitment to patient-centric care.

    For example, we will be demonstrating how to use the Parkinson’s Well-Being Map