Pfizer in negotiations to buy Global Blood Therapeutics, maker of a recently approved sickle cell disease drug, for $5bn (press)

New York- USA

Saturday 06 August 2022

US pharmaceutical company Pfizer is in talks to buy Global Blood Therapeutics, maker of a recently approved sickle cell anaemia drug, for about $5 billion, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday.

Pfizer hopes to reach a deal “in the next few days,” the business newspaper said, citing people close to the matter.

However, other candidates for the acquisition are still in the running, according to the newspaper.
Global Blood Therapeutics’ sickle cell treatment is called Oxbryta. The drug is used to treat haemolytic anaemia (excessive breakdown of red blood cells) in patients aged 12 years and older with sickle cell disease.

The European Commission granted marketing authorisation for Oxbryta (voxelotor) in February 2022. Oxbryta is available on prescription only and treatment must be initiated by a doctor experienced in the treatment of sickle cell disease. 

Oxbryta’s active substance, voxelotor, works by improving the ability of haemoglobin to retain oxygen and preventing it from forming chains. This helps red blood cells maintain their normal shape and flexibility, reducing excessive degradation and improving their lifespan.

Approved for use in people over 12 years of age since 2019, it has also been approved in the US for children aged 4-11 years since December 2022, and helped the company generate first-quarter sales of $55 million (+41%), but a net loss of $81.4 million.
Second quarter sales will be released on Monday. Pfizer, on the other hand, saw its turnover jump 47% in the second quarter, to 27.74 billion dollars, a record, boosted by sales of the vaccine and the anti-Covid pill.

pill. Its net profit soared 78% to $9.9 billion.
Global Blood Therapeutics shares were up 33.03% to $63.84 at the close of trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Friday, giving it a market capitalisation of more than $4 billion.
Pfizer’s stock, on the other hand, was down 1.18 percent at $49.27.




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