Novartis to Buy Prostate Cancer Therapy Firm Endocyte for $2.1 Billion

Maricruz Casares
Octubre 20, 2018

"We are also excited about the opportunity to break into the prostate cancer arena with a near-term product that has the potential to make a meaningful impact for patients in great need of more options".

Under the agreement, Novartis will acquire all outstanding shares of Endocyte common stock for $US24 apiece -totaling $US2.1 billion - in cash.

"Note a below-average reaction time at the business development department considering that the Endocyte market cap was at $110 million only 12 months ago", Baader Helvea's Bruno Bulic said.

Novartis said that, after completing the deal, it will harness its research and expertise to investigate the development of Endocyte's 177Lu-PSMA-617, a potential first-in-class investigational radioligand therapy (RLT) for the treatment of metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. The transaction was unanimously approved by the board of directors of Endocyte.

Endocyte's specialism is the development of radiopharmaceuticals, which are a new type of drug that can carry radioactive substances directly to cancer cells to kill tumour cells at close range.

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Shares of Novartis were changing hands at $85.88 after climbing 1.91% at 12:05 p.m.in NY on Thursday.

Since taking over in February, Narasimhan has shed over-the-counter medicines and generic pills while pushing a spinoff of Novartis's Alcon eyecare unit come 2019. The company was founded on February 29, 1996 and is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland.

The radioligand therapy, or RLT, uses a ligand, or small molecule that is created to bind to a protein expressed on the surfaces of most prostate cancer cells - but not normal cells - called prostate-specific membrane antigen, according to Endocyte's website.

Endocyte develops targeted cancer therapies and earlier this month became the first Purdue University startup to reach a value of $1.5 billion. The company was founded by P. Ron Ellis and Philip S. Low on December 6, 1995 and is headquartered in West Lafayette, IN.

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