AbbVie, a pharmaceutical giant, announced its plan to acquire ImmunoGen, a clinical-stage biotech company specializing in antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), for $10.1 billion. The key attraction of this acquisition is Elahere, an innovative ADC approved for treating platinum-resistant ovarian cancer. Elahere received accelerated approval from the FDA last year for treating specific ovarian, fallopian tube, or primary peritoneal cancers and is currently under a supplemental Biologic License Application for full FDA approval.
The deal also includes other significant assets like IMGN-151, a next-generation ADC for ovarian cancer in Phase 1 trials, and Pivekimab sunirine, a Phase 2 anti-CD123 ADC targeting a rare blood cancer, which has received FDA breakthrough therapy designation.
Both companies’ boards have approved the transaction pending customary closing conditions, regulatory approvals, and ImmunoGen shareholder approval. Expected to close in mid-2024, the acquisition will positively impact AbbVie’s diluted earnings per share starting in 2027.
AbbVie CEO Richard A. Gonzalez emphasized the acquisition’s role in diversifying AbbVie’s oncology pipeline and enhancing long-term growth strategy. ImmunoGen CEO Mark Enyedy expressed confidence in AbbVie as an ideal partner to maximize Elahere’s potential in ovarian cancer treatment.
The acquisition follows a challenging quarter for AbbVie in immunology, with a 6% decrease in worldwide net revenue and an 11.3% drop in immunology product revenue. This move signifies AbbVie’s continued active presence in the market, also demonstrated by their recent acquisition of Mitokinin and the termination of a collaboration agreement with Shanghai-based I-Mab.
In the broader pharmaceutical industry, ADCs are gaining traction, with companies like Eli Lilly, BioNTech, Bristol Myers Squibb, Eisai, and GSK investing in or partnering with ADC developers, highlighting the growing interest and potential in this area of cancer and autoimmune disease treatment.
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[Source: MM+M, November 30th, 2023]