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McQuade Center for Strategic Research and Development Enters Collaboration with Aché to Develop Potential Treatment for General Anxiety Disorder and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

PRINCETON, NJ – The McQuade Center for Strategic Research and Development, LLC (MSRD), a member of the global Otsuka family of pharmaceutical companies, announces today that it has entered an agreement with Aché Laboratórios Farmacêuticos S.A. (Aché), a leader in the Latin American pharmaceutical market, to co-develop a therapy with the potential to treat general anxiety disorder (GAD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Under the terms of the agreement, MSRD and Aché will collaborate to advance Aché’s novel compound ACH000029 through phase 1b clinical trials with the opportunity to expand the collaboration after those studies.


“We know the debilitating effects of general anxiety disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder are far-reaching” said Robert McQuade, PhD, president, MSRD, and chief strategy officer, Otsuka Pharmaceutical Development & Commercialization, Inc. “We look forward to collaborating with Aché and are enthusiastic about what this molecule could potentially mean for patients.”


GAD and PTSD are conditions that continue to present large unmet medical needs. Therefore, medications with new mechanisms of action are needed with the potential to achieve better therapeutic responses.


“We are absolutely thrilled with this collaboration with MSRD, a member of Otsuka,” said Vânia Alcantara Machado, president, Aché. “We believe MSRD’s expertise in early-stage programs and Otsuka’s global leadership position in CNS will be crucial in the development of Aché’s ACH000029 for GAD and PTSD. Patients are in great need of innovation in this field as both still remain as serious unmet medical needs.”


About Aché Laboratorios Farmaceuticos S.A.

Aché, a 55-year-old Brazilian company, is one of the largest pharmaceutical corporations in Brazil, with five industrial plants that manufacture solids, liquid, semi-solids, parenteral drugs, antibiotics, and contraceptives. The company has 5,000 employees, approximately 3,000 of them as sales representatives distributed across several therapeutic areas. Aché is one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in CNS in Brazil, especially in the psychiatry field.


Aché has a dedicated Innovation Unit focused on the research and development of new medicines, generics, and similar drugs. The Innovation Unit has over 300 employees dedicated to drug discovery, pharmaceutical sciences, preclinical and clinical development activities, as well as a business development team focused on the ideation of new projects and in-/out-licensing activities. In the last five years, Aché has launched 190 products, including prescription drugs, specialty care, non-prescription drugs (OTCs), generics, and cosmetics. Aché has been considered the most innovative pharmaceutical company in Brazil for the past six consecutive years.



About McQuade Center for Strategic Research and Development (MSRD)


Established in 2019 by the Otsuka pharmaceutical business in the U.S., the mission of MSRD is to search for, identify, and fund innovative early-stage research and development programs that have the potential to build the future portfolio of Otsuka products.


Otsuka is dedicated to investing in innovative and creative products in areas of unmet need and MSRD was created as an extension of this commitment to support and identify early-stage opportunities that can change the landscape of treatments for mental illness and renal disorders. For more information, please visit


About Otsuka

Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. is a global healthcare company with the corporate philosophy: “Otsuka–people creating new products for better health worldwide.” Otsuka researches, develops, manufactures, and markets innovative products, with a focus on pharmaceutical products to meet unmet medical needs and nutraceutical products for the maintenance of everyday health.

In pharmaceuticals, Otsuka is a leader in the challenging areas of mental, renal, and cardiovascular health and has additional research programs in oncology and on several under-addressed diseases including tuberculosis, a significant global public health issue. These commitments illustrate how Otsuka is a “big venture” company at heart, applying a youthful spirit of creativity in everything it does.

Otsuka established a presence in the U.S. in 1973 and today its U.S. affiliates include Otsuka Pharmaceutical Development & Commercialization, Inc. (OPDC) and Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc. (OAPI). These two companies’ 1,700 employees in the U.S. develop and commercialize medicines in the areas of mental health, nephrology, and cardiology, using cutting-edge technology to address unmet healthcare needs. 

OPDC and OAPI are indirect subsidiaries of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Company, Ltd., which is a subsidiary of Otsuka Holdings Co., Ltd. headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. The Otsuka group of companies employed 47,000 people worldwide and had consolidated sales of approximately USD 13.3 billion in 2020.

All Otsuka stories start by taking the road less traveled. Learn more about Otsuka in the U.S. at and connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter at @OtsukaUS. Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.’s global website is accessible at


Contacts for media

Otsuka In the U.S.

Robert Murphy

Corporate Communications

Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc.

[email protected]

+1 609 249 7262


Otsuka Outside the U.S.

Jeffrey Gilbert Leader,

Pharmaceutical PR

Otsuka Pharmaceutical, Co., Ltd.

[email protected]

+81 3 6717 1410


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