Reserch & Development Organization

Research Laboratories

The Pharmaceutical Research Laboratories were established in 1962 as the Basic Research Laboratories, and are positioned to probe new business ventures from the roots of basic research. These laboratories generated vital fruits in many fields,helping expand Toray exploits into new business realms. The focus subsequently shifted to the life sciences, and in 1999 the name Pharmaceutical Research Laboratories was adopted to better clarify the mission in pharmaceuticals.


The Pharmaceutical Research Laboratories have created world-leading revolutionary products based on Toray's pharmaceutical research philosophy of striving for "innovative new pharmaceuticals." A number of our pharmaceuticals have won acclaim: FERON® as natural interferon-β preparation for treating hepatitis B/C and tumors; DORNER® as the world's first stable prostacyclin derivative oral preparation for the treatment of peripheral vascular disease and pulmonary hypertension; and REMITCH® as the world's first selective κ-opioid receptor agonist for suppressing intractable itching accompanying hemodialysis. Later, we obtained approval of the additional indication for FERON® against compensated cirrhosis type C, and against chronic hepatitis C on concomitant use with antiviral ribavirin, obtained approval to manufacture and market DORNER® as CARELOAD®, an oral prolonged release preparation with innovative formulation, and obtained approval of the additional indication of REMITCH® for improvement of pruritus in chronic liver disease patients.
CARELOAD® is currently undergoing clinical trials as a pharmaceutical to delay the introduction of artificial dialysis for patients with loss of kidney function.
As we strengthen our R&D capabilities, with an eye toward expanding business in the field of "life innovation," we have recently turned our attention to conquering aging issues and intractable illnesses. We have established neurological diseases (pain, itch, and neurodegenerative diseases) as well as kidney diseases, autoimmune disorders and cancer as priority areas, and we are conducting drug discovery research from the standpoint of both synthesized pharmaceuticals and bio-pharmaceuticals. At present, we have a synthesized pharmaceutical currently in the development stage for low molecular weight compound (development no.: TRK-170) which is expected to be effective for inflammatory bowel disease and a bio-pharmaceutical currently in the development stage for PEGylated interferon-β (development no.: TRK-560) which is expected to be effective for hepatitis and multiple sclerosis. We are also licensing inactivated virus particles of hepatitis C, which we led the world in discovering, to researchers throughout the world, and conducting research on medical and pharmaceutical products using these particles.
Exploiting our strengths - in sophisticated synthetic organic chemistry, medicinal chemistry as integrated science based on deep insight for the biological body, and biotechnology (gene, protein and cell engineering) - we are collaborating with pharmaceutical companies, universities and other research institutes in the world (e.g. in areas such as drug development using disease-specific induced iPS cells). We are also actively working together with the New Frontiers Research Laboratories to apply biotools to drug discovery and to find biomarkers.

  • Structural formula of DORNER®Structural formula of DORNER®
  • Structural formula of REMITCH®Structural formula of REMITCH®
    *Winner of 2010 The Pharmaceutical Society of Japan Award for Drug Research and Development.
    Winner of 2010 The Society of Synthetic Organic Chemistry Japan, Award (Technology)

[PEG-IFNβ] Structure Image of PEGylated interferon-β (TRK-560)

[PEG-IFNβ] Structure Image of PEGylated interferon-β (TRK-560)

    Cells on microbeads produce interferon-β.
  • HCV VaccineHCV Vaccine
    Electron micrograph of hepatitis C virus particle.

Milestones in Toray R&D

1962 Established Basic Research Laboratories.
1985 Commenced production of FERON® natural human interferon-β.
1992 Added indication of FERON® as treatment for hepatitis C.
Commenced production of DORNER® for use in treatment of peripheral vascular disease.
1999 Changed name to Pharmaceutical Research Laboratories.
Added indication of DORNER® against pulmonary hypertension.
2006 Added indication of FERON® against type C compensated cirrhosis.
2007 Obtained approval of CARELOAD® as a treatment for pulmonary hypertension,and commenced sales.
2009 Commenced production of REMITCH®, an oral medication to relieve itching
Added indication of FERON® combined with ribavirin for chronic hepatitis C.
2015 Added indication of REMITCH® for improvement of pruritus in chronic liver disease patients.

*REMITCH® is a registered trademark of TORII PHARMACEUTICAL CO., LTD.