Gilead Sciences to Buy German Biotech Firm for $1.4 Billion
Gilead Sciences has announced plans to purchase German biotech firm MYR GmbH for an estimated $1.4 billion (€1.15 billion), with the potential for additional milestone-based payments of up to $364.3 million (€300 million).
Per the deal, Foster City, Calif-based Gilead will gain access to Hepcludex (bulevirtide), which received conditional approval from the European Medicines Agency in July for treating chronic hepatitis D virus (HDV) infection in adults with liver disease. Hepcludex is meant to work by blocking HDV’s ability to enter healthy liver cells.
In the U.S., the drug has received Orphan Drug and Breakthrough Therapy designations for chronic HDV infection. During the latter half of 2021, MYR GmbH plans to apply for FDA accelerated approval of the drug, supported by interim 24-week results from an ongoing phase 3 study.
HDV, the deadliest form of viral hepatitis, occurs only in those who already have contracted the hepatitis B virus and is linked to liver fibrosis, cirrhosis, liver cancer and death.