Alexion to acquire Achillion to strengthen rare diseases portfolio

Alexion acquisition of Achillion : Alexion Pharmaceuticals has agreed to acquire rival US pharma company Achillion Pharmaceuticals for about $930 million in an all-cash deal as per the latest pharma acquisition news.

Achillion is a clinical-stage biopharma company, which is engaged in developing oral small molecule Factor D inhibitors for the treatment of people with complement alternative pathway-mediated rare diseases like paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH) and C3 glomerulopathy (C3G).

Currently, Achillion has two drugs in clinical-stage development – one being danicopan (ACH-4471), which is in phase 2 and the other being ACH-5228, which is in phase 1.

Alexion, on the other hand, is a global biopharma company, which is engaged in developing drugs for rare diseases.

Commenting on Alexion acquisition of Achillion, Ludwig Hantson – CEO of Alexion, said: “Alexion has demonstrated the transformative impact that inhibiting C5 can have on multiple rare and devastating diseases. However, we believe this is just the beginning of what’s possible with complement inhibition.

“Targeting a different part of the complement system – the alternative pathway – by inhibiting Factor D production addresses uncontrolled complement activation further upstream in the complement cascade, and importantly, leaves the rest of the complement system intact, which is critical in maintaining the body’s ability to fight infection. We believe this approach has the opportunity to help patients with diseases not currently addressed through C5 inhibition.

“We look forward to applying our nearly three decades of complement and development expertise to unlock the potential of oral Factor D inhibitors and bring these benefits to patients.”

Alexion acquisition of Achillion

Alexion acquisition of Achillion. Image courtesy of Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc./Business Wire, Inc.

Terms of Alexion acquisition of Achillion

As per the terms of the acquisition, Alexion is offering $6.30 for each share of Achillion.  The deal also has scope for additional consideration through non-tradeable contingent value rights (CVRs), which will be paid to Achillion’s shareholders subject to meeting of certain clinical and regulatory milestones within specified time periods.

Included in these are $1.00 per share should danicopan bag approval from the US FDA, and $1.00 per share once ACH-5228 enters into phase 3 clinical development.

Joe Truitt – President and CEO of Achillion, commenting on Alexion acquisition of Achillion, said: “Having already demonstrated proof-of-concept and proof-of-mechanism with our lead candidate, danicopan (ACH-4471), in PNH and C3G, respectively, we believe there is significant opportunity for Factor D inhibition in the treatment of other diseases as well.

“Alexion is an established leader in developing medicines for complement-mediated diseases, and we look forward to working together to accelerate our objective of bringing novel therapies to patients as quickly as possible and ensuring that the broad promise of this approach is fully realized.”

Closing of Alexion acquisition of Achillion

Alexion acquisition of Achillion is subject to the approval of the latter’s shareholders and meeting of customary closing conditions and receipt of regulatory approvals and is likely to be wrapped up in H1 2020.

In 2018, Alexion acquired Syntimmune, a Boston-based clinical-stage biotech company focused on developing drugs for autoimmune diseases, for around $1.2 billion. Read Alexion acquisition of Syntimmune here.

For more pharma acquisition news like Alexion acquisition of Achillion and other pharma industry news, keep following Pharma News Daily.

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