Amgen to acquire Five Prime Therapeutics for gastric cancer candidate bemarituzumab

Amgen acquisition of Five Prime Therapeutics : Amgen has agreed to acquire Five Prime Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biotech company, for about $1.9 billion, to add a phase 3 ready gastric cancer candidate called bemarituzumab.

Based in California, Five Prime Therapeutics is engaged in developing immuno-oncology and targeted cancer therapies.

Amgen will acquire the biotech company for $38.00 per share in cash.

Bemarituzumab is an anti-FGFR2b antibody, which has delivered positive data from a randomized, placebo-controlled phase 2 trial held in frontline advanced gastric or gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) cancer.

The antibody is said to inhibit fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) from binding and triggering FGFR2b to block various downstream pro-tumor signaling pathways, thereby potentially slowing the progression of cancer.

Tom Civik – president and CEO of Five Prime Therapeutics, commenting on Amgen acquisition of Five Prime Therapeutics, said: “This is an exciting day for patients who may one day benefit from the promise of bemaritizumab and our full pipeline. I’m so proud of the Five Prime team and the science we’ve pioneered.

“We see tremendous complementarity between the two companies. Amgen has global reach, world-class resources, and they share our deep passion for science and commitment to patients.  I have full confidence that Amgen is the right company to work with us to bring our innovative cancer treatments to patients and to achieve our mission to rewrite cancer.”

Amgen acquisition of Five Prime Therapeutics

Amgen acquisition of Five Prime Therapeutics. Photo courtesy of Amgen Inc.

Amgen said that the acquisition of Five Prime Therapeutics will help in its international growth strategy with gastric cancer being one of the most common types of cancer in the world.

The US biopharma company said that the additional pipeline programs of Five Prime Therapeutics complement its efforts to deliver meaningful therapies to cancer patients.

Commenting on Amgen acquisition of Five Prime Therapeutics, Robert A. Bradway – chairman and CEO of Amgen said: “The acquisition of Five Prime offers a compelling opportunity for Amgen to strengthen our oncology portfolio with a promising late-stage, first-in-class global asset to treat gastric cancer.

“We look forward to welcoming the Five Prime team to Amgen and working with them to leverage our best-in-class monoclonal antibody manufacturing capabilities to supply additional clinical materials, as well as expanded production quantities, to realize the full potential of bemarituzumab for even more patients around the world as quickly as possible.”

The deal, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to be wrapped up by the end of Q2 2021.

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