Deal worth $3.7B sealed as Amgen buys biopharma ChemoCentryx

August 4, 2022 - 3 minutes
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A company producing drugs including TAVNEOS to treat autoimmune diseases, plus others dealing with inflammatory disorders and cancer has been bought by biopharmaceutical company, Amgen for $52 per share.

ChemoCentryx and Amgen have entered a definitive agreement worth approximately $3.7 billion.

Robert Bradway, chairman and chief executive officer at Amgen, said: “The acquisition of ChemoCentryx represents a compelling opportunity for Amgen to add to our decades-long leadership in inflammation and nephrology with TAVNEOS, a transformative, first-in-class treatment for ANCA-associated vasculitis.

Serious disease

“We are excited to join in the TAVNEOS launch and help many more patients with this serious and sometimes life-threatening disease for which there remains significant unmet medical need. We also look forward to welcoming the highly skilled team from ChemoCentryx that shares our passion for serving patients suffering from serious diseases.”

TAVNEOS is an orally administered selective complement component 5a receptor inhibitor. It was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in October 2021 as an adjunctive treatment for adult patients with severe active ANCA-associated vasculitis, specifically granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA) and microscopic polyangiitis (MPA) – the two main forms of ANCA-associated vasculitis, in combination with standard therapy.

Thomas Schall, president and chief executive officer of ChemoCentryx said: “A fierce commitment to improving human lives is the bond that unites Amgen and ChemoCentryx today. Last year, after 25 years of proud history, we at CCXI delivered on our founding promise with the approval of TAVNEOS for patients with anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic autoantibody-associated vasculitis (ANCA-associated vasculitis). It is an honor to now join Amgen’s great mission, and together begin a bright new era bringing landscape-shaping medicines like TAVNEOS to those who will benefit most.”

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Inflamed vessels

ANCA-associated vasculitis is an umbrella term for a group of multi-system autoimmune diseases with small vessel inflammation. Inflamed vessels may rupture or become occluded giving rise to a broad array of clinical symptoms and signs related to a systemic inflammatory response which may result in profound injury and dysfunction in the kidneys, lungs and other organs.

Amgen deals with inflammation and nephrology and has a healthy portfolio of existing drugs. Its pipeline includes four innovative phase 2 inflammation medicines – efavaleukin alpha for systemic lupus erythematosus and ulcerative colitis, ordesekimab for celiac disease, rocatinlimab for atopic dermatitis and rozibafusap alfa for systemic lupus erythematosus.

U.S. sales of TAVNEOS in the first quarter of 2022, the first full quarter of sales, were $5.4 million. TAVNEOS is also approved in major markets outside the U.S., including the European Union and Japan.

Chemoattractant receptors

In addition to TAVNEOS, ChemoCentryx has three early-stage drug candidates that target chemoattractant receptors in other inflammatory diseases and an oral checkpoint inhibitor for cancer.

The transaction has been unanimously approved by each company’s board of directors. It is subject to ChemoCentryx stockholder approval, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions, and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year (2022).

ChemoCentryx is a biopharmaceutical company commercializing and developing new medications for inflammatory and autoimmune diseases and cancer. ChemoCentryx targets the chemokine and chemoattractant systems to discover, develop and commercialize orally administered therapies.

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TAVNEOS (avacopan), approved by the FDA as an adjunctive treatment of ANCA-associated vasculitis, is an orally administered small molecule that employs a novel, highly targeted mode of action in complement-driven autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.

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