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Sepracor Asks FDA to Okay Epilepsy Drug

Marlborough, MA-based Sepracor (NASDAQ: SEPR), known mainly for its sleep aid Lunesta, said today that it has applied to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for approval of a compound called eslicarbazepine acetate as an adjunct to other therapies in adult epilepsy patients. Sepracor says the sodium-channel blocker—developed by Portuguese pharmaceutical company BIAL-Portela and licensed by Sepracor in 2007—has been tested in a multi-country Phase III study involving more than 1,000 patients. The company, which proposes to market the compound under the trade name Stedesa, estimates the U.S. market for epilepsy drugs at $3.5 billion.