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Celgene clears antitrust hurdle

Celgene receives antitrust approval to buy Abraxis Bioscience

Celgene has announced that it has received antitrust approval to buy Abraxis Bioscience and expects to close the transaction in the third or fourth quarter of 2010.

This follows the company's announcement in June that it would buy Abraxis for $2.9bn in cash and stock in a move to expand its array of cancer treatments.

Abraxis' only approved drug is the breast cancer treatment Abraxane (paclitaxel), however it has potential as a treatment for other types of cancer.

According to Bob Hugin, CEO of Celgene Corporation: "The acquisition of Abraxis BioScience is an exceptional strategic fit that will accelerate our strategy of becoming a global leader in oncology. We are excited by the opportunity to leverage our clinical, regulatory and commercial capabilities to provide metastatic breast cancer patients with an innovative treatment in Abraxane.

"We are also excited by the potential of Abraxane to treat additional solid tumour malignancies such as non-small cell lung and pancreatic cancer. Finally, the potential of nab(R)-based therapeutics developed by Abraxis coupled with Celgene's innovative science offers the potential to deliver long-term value to patients, doctors and all of our stakeholders."

Patrick Soon-Shiong, executive chairman of Abraxis BioScience said: "Our nab technology platform is changing the treatment paradigm for difficult-to-treat cancers. In Celgene we have found the ideal partner to further expand the reach of Abraxane and our other treatments, in order to improve the lives of patients worldwide."

Shares of Celgene rose 35 cents to $56.61 in morning trading, while shares of Abraxis remained unchanged at $75.75.

4th August 2010

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