AstraZeneca to buy next-gen cancer therapy company for US$2.4bn

Article by Aniqah Majid

AstraZeneca will add several new cancer and endocrine treatments to its medical portfolio with its recent acquisitions

ASTRAZENECA is set to acquire Canadian cancer therapy firm Fusion Pharmaceuticals in a deal worth US$2.4bn. This is the second company it expects to add to its burgeoning portfolio this month.  

Fusion Pharmaceuticals, which develops radioconjugates as precision medicines to treat cancer, is expected to be fully owned by AstraZeneca as a subsidiary, with operations continuing in Canada and the US.

Radioconjugates deliver radioactive isotopes directly to cancer cells by targeting molecules like peptides and antibodies. Fusion said the medicine could be an alternative approach to traditional radiotherapy, minimising the damage to healthy cells.

On the Fusion acquisition, Susan Galbraith, the executive VP for oncology R&D at AstraZeneca said: “Together with Fusion, we have an opportunity to accelerate the development of FPI-2265 as a potential new treatment for prostate cancer, and to harness their innovative actinium-based platform to develop radioconjugates as foundational regimens."

Another acquisition

Also, this month, AstraZeneca entered an agreement to acquire Amolyt Pharma for around US$1.05bn. The company is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company specialising in using therapeutic peptides to treat rare endocrine and related diseases.  

AstraZeneca’s deals with Fusion and Amolyt will add several next-generation treatments to the company’s oncology and endocrine portfolios. This includes Fusion’s new potential treatment, FPI-2265, for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC).

The Fusion deal is subject to a majority approval vote by all Fusion shareholders to sell the company, and the acquisition is expected to be complete by the end of Q2.

Completed Chinese acquisition

Earlier this year, AstraZeneca completed the acquisition of Gracell Biotechnologies, a Chinese company developing cell therapies for treating cancer and autoimmune diseases, for around US$1.2bn.

This acquisition represents AstraZeneca’s growing presence in the Chinese pharmaceutical market, which is expected to achieve a revenue of US$119bn in 2024.

Article by Aniqah Majid

Staff reporter, The Chemical Engineer

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