Baxter Acquires Oncaspar to Boost Oncology Footprint
Baxter International is paying $900 million to acquire the Oncaspar product line from Italian drugmaker Sigma-Tau Finanziaria, in a deal that expands the drugmaker’s footprint in the growing oncology market for rare and orphan diseases.
The newly acquired portfolio will be part of Baxter’s BioScience business, a separate, publicly traded innovation-oriented biopharmaceutical firm expected to launch by mid-year, the company says.
Oncaspar (pegaspargase) is a first-line biologic marketed in the U.S., Germany and Poland as part of a multiagent chemotherapy regime to treat acute lymphoblastic leukemia. The therapy generates sales of about $100 million annually, according to Baxter.
The Deerfield, Ill., company plans to investigate Oncaspar for other potential indications, including acute myeloid leukemia. Also as part of the deal, Baxter gets calaspargase pegol, an experimental biologic for the treatment of ALL whose longer shelf life is expected to reduce dosing frequency.
The sale is expected to close in the third quarter. — John Bechtel