Amgen, the world’s largest biotechnology company, has entered into an agreement to acquire Abgenix, a company specialising in the discovery, development and manufacture of human therapeutic antibodies, for $2.2 billion in cash plus the assumption of debt.
Under the terms of the agreement, shareholders of Abgenix will receive $22.50 in cash per common share. The transaction includes the Abgenix 100,000 square foot manufacturing plant in
The acquisition of Abgenix provides Amgen with full ownership of one of its most important advanced pipeline products, panitumumab.
Working closely with Abgenix under a co-development agreement that Amgen assumed as a result of its acquisition of Immunex Corporation in 2002, Amgen has led the development and commercialisation strategy for panitumumab.
Panitumumab is the first epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFr) inhibitor to demonstrate a statistically significant improvement in progression-free survival for metastatic colorectal cancer patients who have failed standard chemotherapy.
Panitumumab is also the first fully human monoclonal antibody in cancer clinical trials that targets the epidermal growth factor receptor. Amgen believes that potential peak worldwide sales for panitumumab could reach $2 billion or more, assuming success of panitumumab in several clinical trials evaluating multiple lines of therapy in colorectal cancer and head and neck cancer.
Later this week, Amgen and Abgenix expect to initiate a biologics license application (BLA) for the treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer patients who have failed standard chemotherapy.