Published: Sat, October 20, 2018
Health Care | By Oscar Goodwin

Novartis AG (NVS) Announces Deal for Radiopharmaceutical Company

Novartis AG (NVS) Announces Deal for Radiopharmaceutical Company

The deal values Endocyte at $24 per share, representing a 54-percent premium from the firm's $15.56 Wednesday closing price. Novartis earlier this year announced the purchase of rare-disease drugmaker AveXis Inc. for $8.7 billion. The transaction was unanimously approved by the board of directors of Endocyte.

Novartis, the Swiss drug maker, has agreed to buy the U.S. cancer-treatment provider Endocyte, for $US2.1 billion. It is expected to be completed in the first half of 2019, subject to approval by Endocyte stockholders, antitrust and regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. Shares in Endocyte were up as much as 51 percent Thursday morning.

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Liz Barrett, CEO, Novartis oncology, 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".

Novartis hopes to be able to push forward the development of its investigational therapy 177Lu-PSMA-617 for use in earlier lines of prostate cancer therapy. "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".

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

Novartis traded at $86.22 per share, up about 1%, in a 52-week range of $72.30 to $94.19. It operates through the following segments: Innovative Medicines, Alcon, Sandoz, and Corporate. The ligand in the drug is chemically attached to a radioactive atom, lutetium-177, which then releases a particle to deliver radiation directly to the cell and kill it. The company is based in West Lafayette, Indiana.

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