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19 November 2019Americas

Roche buys fibrotic diseases biotech in $1.4bn deal

Switzerland-based  Roche has agreed to acquire  Promedior and its portfolio of molecules for serious fibrotic diseases.

Roche will pay $390 million upfront for the Massachusetts-based biotech, in addition to $1 billion in potential milestone payments, according to an  announcement issued on Friday, November 15.

PRM-151, Promedior’s main asset, received breakthrough therapy designation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) earlier this year for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).

IPF is a progressive, irreversible and ultimately fatal disease characterised by progressive loss of lung function due to fibrosis (scarring) in the lungs.

Jason Lettmann, CEO of Promedior, said: “With over a decade of research, development and investment, Promedior has demonstrated the unique ability of its pentraxin-2 platform to deliver disease-modifying potential in fibrotic disorders.”

He added that, given Roche's strong expertise in IPF, haematological cancer and other fibrotic disorders, Promedior believes the Swiss company is “ideally positioned to bring the potential of our platform to patients and provide new treatment options within these areas of urgent unmet medical need”.

Currently, two drugs are FDA-approved for the treatment of IPF: Ofev (nintedanib) and Esbriet (pirfenidone).

While Ofev is owned by Boehringer Ingelheim, Esbriet is owned by InterMune, which was  acquired by Roche for $8.3 billion in 2014. Esbriet’s orphan exclusivity expires in 2021.

James Sabry, global head of Roche Pharma Partnering, said: “We are excited to combine Promedior's portfolio with our drug development capabilities to further advance PRM-151 in fibrotic diseases, including IPF and myelofibrosis.”

Earlier this year, in February, Roche  announced it would buy gene therapy company  Spark Therapeutics in a $4.3 billion deal. Spark was the first company to receive US Food and Drug Administration approval for gene therapy for a genetic disease in 2017.

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Americas
25 February 2019   Switzerland-based Roche will buy gene therapy company Spark Therapeutics in a $4.3 billion deal.

More on this story

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Americas
25 February 2019   Switzerland-based Roche will buy gene therapy company Spark Therapeutics in a $4.3 billion deal.