US biopharma company Endocyte to be acquired by Novartis for $2.1bn

Novartis acquisition of Endocyte : US biopharma company Endocyte has agreed to be acquired by Swiss pharma company Novartis in a deal worth around $2.1 billion.

As per the latest pharma acquisition news, Novartis has gone ahead with the deal to enlarge its expertise in radiopharmaceuticals for treating various types of cancers.

Novartis Acquisition of Endocyte

According to the terms of Novartis acquisition of Endocyte, the Swiss pharma company will acquire all the shares of the US biopharma company at $24 per share.

Endocyte is focused on developing targeted therapies with companion imaging agents like Lu-PSMA-617 through drug conjugation technology.

An investigational radioligand therapy (RLT), Lu-PSMA-617 is being developed for the treatment of metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC).

Lu-PSMA-617 targets the prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA), which is present in majority mCRPC patients. The radioligand therapy of Endocyte has delivered promising phase 2 data.

Currently, Lu-PSMA-617 is going through a global phase 3 trial VISION in male patients with mCRPC.

Novartis acquisition of Endocyte

Novartis acquisition of Endocyte. Photo courtesy of Novartis AG.

Commenting on Novartis acquisition of Endocyte, Mike Sherman – President and CEO of Endocyte, said: “Since acquiring exclusive worldwide rights to develop and commercialize PSMA-617 agents in 2017, the entire Endocyte team, along with our partners, have worked tirelessly to build a leading radioligand (RLT) portfolio and create value for patients and shareholders alike.

“We are thrilled that Novartis recognizes the potential for Lu-PSMA-617 to change the treatment landscape for men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC), as well as the broader role that RLTs may potentially play in the treatment of cancer.

“The global reach and expertise of Novartis in developing and commercializing RLT therapies will be critical in efforts for patients to benefit from these therapies as quickly as possible.”

After completion of Novartis acquisition of Endocyte, the US biopharma company is expected to grow the radioligand therapy platform of the Swiss pharma company with a product that is expected to be introduced in the market in the near future alongside some early-stage clinical development treatments.

Novartis acquisition of Endocyte will also enable the former to utilize its expertise in research and development to assess the possible development of Lu-PSMA-617 as an early treatment line for prostate cancer.

Liz Barrett – CEO of Novartis Oncology, commenting on Novartis acquisition of Endocyte, said: “Novartis has a strong legacy of addressing unmet needs with transformative therapies and is building a leadership capability in new, technology-driven platforms that address some of the world’s most complex health challenges, including cancer.

“Today’s announcement about the proposed acquisition of Endocyte builds on our growing capability in radiopharmaceuticals, which is expected to be an increasingly important treatment option for patients and a key growth driver for our business. We are also excited about the opportunity to break into the prostate cancer arena with a near-term product that has the potential to make a meaningful impact for patients in great need of more options.”

Novartis acquisition of Endocyte will be subject to approvals from shareholders of the US biopharma company apart from receipt of antitrust and regulatory approvals and closing of other customary closing conditions.

Earlier this year, Novartis signed a $8.7 billion deal to acquire US gene therapy company AveXis with an intention to strengthen its gene therapy and neuroscience pipeline. Check out the post on Novartis acquisition of AveXis for more details.

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