Deal Watch: NASH Space Heats Up With Tobira/Regado Reverse-Merger
Roche buys out French biotech Trophos, with plans to continue developing its failed ALS candidate in spinal muscular atrophy. Meanwhile, the ramifications from last year’s complex Novartis/GSK tie-up continue, as Novartis transfers a Phase III BRAF inhibitor to Array a month after returning a MEK inhibitor to its former partner.
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Amgen moves into the chimeric antigen receptor T-cell space in cancer under a complex partnership with Kite Pharma. Gilead, Isis and Janssen agree to multiple deals during and after the holiday season, while scuttled deals return assets or rights to Vanda, AMAG and OncoGenex.
Following Novartis’ oncology deal with GSK, which included another MEK inhibitor, Array anticipates getting the asset back for itself. Novartis would be obliged to continue supporting Phase III studies, Array says, as part of a pipeline update in second-quarter earnings call.
Novartis stresses the blockbuster potential, in its hands, of three products – Votrient, Tafinlar and Mekinist – that it is acquiring from GSK as part of its narrowed focus on innovative pharmaceuticals, eye care and generics, and the divestment of vaccines, OTCs and animal health.