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Deals Of The Week: Exit From Ambit Tie-Up Just A Blip In Astellas’ Oncology Aspirations

Executive Summary

DOTW looks at Astellas’ oncology ambitions plus its recent split with partner Ambit, as well as analysis of Shire’s buyout of Premacure, AbbVie’s out-license of an anti-interleukin-13 antibody to Receptos and the Merck/Luminex collaboration on a companion diagnostic for Alzheimer’s disease.

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Presentations at the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases conference included anticipated data from Gilead in hepatitis C genotype 3 patients, results from the COSMOS trial pairing Gilead’s sofosbuvir with Janssen’s simeprevir, Phase II data for Merck’s two-drug DAA combo and findings from an HCV collaboration by Boehringer Ingelheim and Presidio.

Ambit IPO Ambles Out; Portola And Bluebird Prepare

Despite pricing well below its range and trading down, Ambit could raise $90 million in an IPO and a private placement with existing investors. Also this week, gene therapy company bluebird bio filed for an IPO, and hematology play Portola made the rounds on its investor road show.

Broader Indications For Tarceva As Astellas Scales Back In The U.S.

The Japanese pharma is consolidating its U.S. operations, including the shuttering of OSI, where Tarceva initially was developed, as the cancer drug gains another indication with a companion diagnostic.

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