EPD aims at applying brown adipocyte
to the prevention and treatment of
obesity and diabetes.
EPD Co., Ltd. is developing its own pipeline in Drug Discovery and Development of EPS Creative Health Technology Group Limited (Hong Kong)’s healthcare business. It’s aiming for the prevention and treatment of obesity and diabetes using its brown adipocyte derivative technology. EPS’s strengths include its expertise and know-how in Japan and China, which it has cultivated over the years, and its access to China. Based on these strengths, we are working on a daily basis to realize the early commercialization of our pipeline.
Greetings from the President
EPD Co., Ltd.
Our company was founded with the aim of developing regenerative medicine and food products that can contribute to the weight reduction in overweight or obesity adults. We utilize technology invented in academia, which provides a new process capable of performing direct conversion of or induction from somatic cells to brown adipocytes. Brown adipose tissue is a fat tissue in the body that burns fat to generate heat, and there is a reported negative correlation between body mass index (BMI) and the thermogenic activity of brown adipose tissue in adults.
In Japan, the proportion of obese people (BMI ≥ 25 kg/m2) is 33.0% for males and 22.3% for females, with a significant increase observed in males from 2013 to 2019. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) criteria, the proportion of obese people in Japan (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2) is 4.6%, the second lowest among 37 OECD member countries, after South Korea’s 4.3%. However, obesity is a major risk factor for many chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer. We believe that treating and preventing obesity can contribute to extending people’s healthy life expectancy.
Brown adipose tissue is present in various areas, such as between the shoulder blades, around the kidneys, above the clavicle, in the axillary region, and beside the spine. Brown adipose tissue between the shoulder blades is observed in newborns and infants but decreases with age and is not observed in adults. Our company aims to establish regenerative medicine technology by cultivating fibroblasts collected from the body, inducing them into brown adipocytes, and then transplanting them into the body.
In recent years, GLP-1 receptor agonists have gathered attention as a treatment for chronic weight management in obese or overweight adult patients. While these drugs are thought to induce a sense of fullness and suppress appetite, our technology aims to target the burning of fat and heat production within the body through the transplanted brown adipocytes. We hope that our approach will become a new option for the prevention and treatment of obesity.
Our company is advancing the development of this technology with a sense of urgency, with the initial goal of starting business in Japan.
Tomohiro Nakatani started his career at Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co., Ltd. (currently Kyowa Kirin Co., Ltd.). While working there, he started to study as a research student at the Faculty of Medicine (Epidemiology and Biostatistics School) of the University of Tokyo in 1990, and was engaged in clinical development operations in Japan and the United States. He served as the head of Biostatistics, Data Management, and Clinical Pharmacology Department, Director of Project Management Department, and Director of Development Coordination Department. He was also involved in industry activities as a member of the Steering Committee of the Drug Evaluation Committee starting in 2012 and as Chairman of the Review Board of Ethical Drug Product Information Brochure from 2017 to 2021 at Japan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association. He joined EPS Holdings, Inc. in 2023, concurrently serving as Representative Director President and Representative Corporate Officer and CEO of EPS Innovative Medicine (Japan) Co., Ltd. In December 2023, he was appointed as Representative Director of EPD Co., Ltd. He is a pharmacist and a trial statistician certified by the Biometric Society of Japan.
Corporate Officer, CTO
In 1994, Dai Ping began to work as a research scientist at RIKEN’s Laboratory of Molecular Genetics, RIKEN, and Strategic Basic Research Programs of Japan Science and Technology Corporation. In 2004, he was appointed Assistant Professor at Department of Pathology and Cell Regulation of Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, and in 2009 he served as Lecturer at this department. In 2015, he was appointed Associate Professor of Department of Cellular Regenerative Medicine at Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine. Currently Dai Ping is serving as Professor of Department of Cellular Regenerative Medicine at Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, and concurrently serving as Corporate Officer and CTO of EPD Co., Ltd.
After engaging in clinical work as a pharmacist, Shinji Kondo worked for about 20 years in the pharmaceutical affairs and clinical development of medical devices and regenerative medicine products. He was seconded to a biotech company, where he was also involved in business planning and fundraising. He joined EPS in 2004. Since 2018, as the head of the regenerative medicine business promotion division at EPS Holdings Co., Ltd, he promoted many projects for new business development and sales planning. He also led several projects for licensing of drug candidates for commercialization in China, and oversaw technology evaluation and investment decisions for biotech companies that were our investment candidates, as well as management of investment targets. He currently serves as Corporate Officer of EPD Co., Ltd.
Tomohisa Hayakawa was engaged in clinical development planning and project management in Japan, the U.S. and Europe at Taiho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. and Daiichi Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. He joined EPS in 2007 and has been responsible for project management and business development in Japan, China, and Asia. Since 2021, he has been concurrently held the position of Corporate Officer of EPS Innovative Medicine (Japan) Limited. He was appointed President and Representative Director of EPD Co., Ltd. in the same year. In 2023, he became an advisor to EPD Co., Ltd. He has extensive experience in oncology area. He has experience in public activities such as a member of the Research Evaluation Committee of the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) and a program committee member of the DIA Annual Conference in Japan for Asian New Drug Development. Ph. D in pharmacy and a pharmacist.
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