Week of Apr. 23, 2012: AstraZeneca to Acquire Ardea Biosciences; Pfizer to Divest Nutrition Business to Nestlé; and More

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AstraZeneca to Acquire Ardea Biosciences; Pfizer to Divest Nutrition Business to Nestlé; and More.

AstraZeneca has agreed to acquire Ardea Biosciences, a biotechnology company focused on the development of small-molecule therapeutics for $1.26 billion. The acquisition will include Ardea’s product candidate lesinurad (formerly known as RDEA594), a selective inhibitor of URAT1 that is currently in Phase III development as a potential treatment for the chronic management of hyperuricaemia in patients with gout. Read More

Human Genome Sciences (HGS) has rejected an unsolicited proposal from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) to acquire HGS for $13.00 per share in cash ($2.59 billion total). HGS’s board of directors has authorized the exploration of strategic alternatives in the best interests of shareholders, including, but not limited to, a potential sale of the company. GSK has been invited to participate in this process and HGS has requested additional information regarding investigational products in GSK’s clinical pipeline to which HGS has substantial financial rights, including darapladib, in Phase II development for treating cardiovascular disease, and albiglutide, in Phase III development for treating Type II diabetes. Read More

Pfizer has agreed to divest its nutrition business to Nestlé for $11.85 billion in cash. Pfizer’s nutrition business recorded revenues of approximately $2.1 billion in 2011, an increase of 15% versus 2010. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of regulatory approvals in certain jurisdictions. Upon completion of the transaction, Pfizer’s nutrition employees will be transferred to Nestlé, subject to works council and union consultation where required. Read More


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A roundup of additional company and people news from pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies, their suppliers, and contract-service providers. Read More