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UCB and IBM Collaborate to Personalize Care for Epilepsy Patients

ARMONK, N.Y. and BRUSSELS, May 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- regulated information -- UCB and IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the completion of the initial phase of a project designed to harness the power of analytics to help healthcare providers deliver more highly personalized care to people living with epilepsy. The milestone marks the critical first step in the path towards eventually harnessing the transformative power of cognitive computing capabilities, such as IBM Watson, for epilepsy care.

The goal of the project is to deliver an interactive system that translates massive amounts of patient data and scientific literature into insights that healthcare providers can consult at the point of care to inform their treatment decisions.

Together, UCB and IBM scientists are working to create the healthcare industry's most comprehensive corpus of data on epilepsy. Upon completion of this project, healthcare providers would be able to combine their own clinical patient assessment with the system's predictive analytics to determine the probability that specific approaches to care will be successful.

Dr. Iris Low-Friedrich , Executive Vice-President Global Projects and Development and Chief Medical Officer, UCB said: "UCB focuses on the creation of innovative networks because we recognize that delivering best-in-class solutions to patients requires collaboration with a diverse group of internal and external experts. We have partnered with IBM to explore this concept of streamlining large amounts of data into actionable approaches to epilepsy care."

Epilepsy, one of the most common diseases of the central nervous system, afflicts approximately 65 million people worldwide1. A recent special issue of The Lancet2 highlighted the significant unmet medical needs in epilepsy and called on public health officials to treat this disease as a global health priority.

UCB and IBM anticipate that deeper insight into the epilepsy patient population could potentially provide millions of patients with more personalized care and ultimately improved outcomes. This approach will help seed the foundation for the potential to leverage cognitive computing, natural language processing, and machine learning capabilities to raise the standard of care in epilepsy.

"Technologies, like analytics and cognitive computing applied to big data, are revolutionizing the way we deliver and receive care," said Robert Merkel , Global Healthcare and Life Sciences Industry Leader, IBM Global Business Services. "IBM is dedicating innovation and expertise to help UCB prove the predictive value of this technology that would arm physicians with information that will help them identify the best possible treatment options and improve quality of care for patients suffering from epilepsy."

As part of its open innovation model, UCB may look to collaborate with additional leaders in the epilepsy and healthcare technology communities to develop and broaden the reach of this project and improve long-term patient outcomes.

Phil Gattone , M.Ed., CEO of the Epilepsy Foundation and participant in the project's advisory board said, "The Epilepsy Foundation is very excited about the potential of this innovative approach for more personalized treatment management of epilepsy patients. Individuals fighting epilepsy and their care providers deserve the most current information to help them make informed decisions about their care in a timeframe that matters. This collaboration could benefit patients, their families and the healthcare system in a unique way."

For further information UCB

France Nivelle , Global Communications, UCB
T +32.2.559.9178,  

Laurent Schots , Media Relations, UCB
T +32.2.559.9264,  

For further information IBM

Holli Haswell , IBM External Relations
T +1.720.396.5485,

Notes to the editor

About UCB
UCB, Brussels, Belgium ( is a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of innovative medicines and solutions to transform the lives of people living with severe diseases of the immune system or of the central nervous system. With 9,000 people in approximately 40 countries, the company generated revenue of EUR 3.4 billion in 2012. UCB is listed on Euronext Brussels (symbol: UCB).

About UCB Research Collaborations
UCB has adopted an open innovation model in which internal and external experts collaborate to address unmet needs for people living with severe diseases of the immune system and the central nervous system. As part of its commitment to raising the standard of care for patients, UCB is building these long-term collaborations and super networks with leading researchers and institutions to use cutting-edge scientific research and technology to deliver unique patient solutions.

About IBM
To learn more about IBM's Big Data and Analytics services, please visit:
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UCB Forward-Looking Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements based on current plans, estimates and beliefs of management. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements, including estimates of revenues, operating margins, capital expenditures, cash, other financial information, expected legal, political, regulatory or clinical results and other such estimates and results. By their nature, such forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions which could cause actual results to differ materially from those that may be implied by such forward-looking statements contained in this press release. Important factors that could result in such differences include: changes in general economic, business and competitive conditions, the inability to obtain necessary regulatory approvals or to obtain them on acceptable terms, costs associated with research and development, changes in the prospects for products in the pipeline or under development by UCB, effects of future judicial decisions or governmental investigations, product liability claims, challenges to patent protection for products or product candidates, changes in laws or regulations, exchange rate fluctuations,  changes or uncertainties in tax laws or the administration of such laws and hiring and retention of its employees.  UCB is providing this information as of the date of this press release and expressly disclaims any duty to update any information contained in this press release, either to confirm the actual results or to report a change in its expectations.

There is no guarantee that new product candidates in the pipeline will progress to product approval or that new indications for existing products will be developed and approved. Products or potential products which are the subject of partnerships, joint ventures or licensing collaborations may be subject to differences between the partners. Also, UCB or others could discover safety, side effects or manufacturing problems with its products after they are marketed.

Moreover, sales may be impacted by international and domestic trends toward managed care and health care cost containment and the reimbursement policies imposed by third-party payers as well as legislation affecting biopharmaceutical pricing and reimbursement.


1. Epilepsy Foundation. About Epilepsy. Accessed 5/15/13.
2. The Lancet. "Wanted: a global campaign against epilepsy." The Lancet no. 380 (9848):1121.

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