Merck to Acquire Afferent Pharmaceuticals

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Merck to Acquire Afferent Pharmaceuticals

From Merck press release:

“Merck (NYSE:MRK), known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, and Afferent Pharmaceuticals announced today that the two companies have signed a definitive agreement under which Merck will acquire this privately held pharmaceutical company. Afferent Pharmaceuticals is a leader in the development of therapeutic candidates targeting the P2X3 receptor for the treatment of common, poorly-managed, neurogenic conditions. Afferent’s lead investigational candidate, AF-219, is a selective, non-narcotic, orally-administered P2X3 antagonist currently being evaluated in a Phase 2b clinical trial for the treatment of refractory, chronic cough as well as in a Phase 2 clinical trial in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) with cough.

“Afferent has pioneered the clinical development of novel investigational candidates selectively targeting the P2X3 receptor, an exciting area of research,” said Dr. Roger M. Perlmutter, president, Merck Research Laboratories. “We look forward to advancing these innovative molecules for patients with conditions like chronic cough, an area of significant unmet medical need.”

Under terms of the agreement, Merck, through a subsidiary, will acquire all outstanding stock of Afferent in exchange for an upfront payment of $500 million in cash. Also, Afferent shareholders will be eligible to receive a total of up to an additional $750 million associated with the attainment of certain clinical development and commercial milestones for multiple indications and candidates, including AF-219.” Full release 

Additional Coverage:

  • Merck bags PhIII-bound Afferent Pharma in $1.25B deal – FierceBiotech
  • Merck coughs up $500M for Afferent up front, another $750M possible – BioWorld
  • Biotech Vet Hits Jackpot Again With $1.2 Billion Buyout Of Peninsula Company – SF Business Times
  • Q&A: After scoring 2nd big deal in 5 years, is this CEO the Steph Curry of biotech? – SF Business Times
June 10th, 2016|