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Mallinckrodt pays $1.2bn for Sucampo Pharma

The Irish group will acquire Amitizia, Rescula and a pipeline of rare disease projects

Mallinckrodt

As 2017 drew to a close, Mallinckrodt signed a deal to buy Sucampo Pharma of the US - and its constipation drug Amitizia - for $1.2bn.

Mallinckrodt is paying $18 per share for Sucampo and will also assume the company’s $360m debt under the terms of the deal, adding Amitizia (lubiprostone), glaucoma treatment Rescula (unoprostone isopropyl) and a pipeline of rare diseases projects to its portfolio.

Mallinckrodt is trying to reduce its reliance on cash cow product Acthar (corticotropin) for infantile spasms and multiple sclerosis, which brought in sales of almost $309m in the third quarter of 2017, down 6%. Acthar’s slowdown has been attributed by the company to payer resistance affecting prescription fulfilment, and the drug has also been in the spotlight in the US over price increases that culminated in a payer lawsuit a few weeks ago.

Amitizia is the prize asset in the deal, with FDA approvals in hand for three indications - chronic idiopathic constipation as well as constipation linked to irritable bowel syndrome and chronic opioid use - and net sales reported by partner Takeda of $115m in the third quarter of 2017. Sucampo also sold $20m-worth of the drug to Mylan for sale in Japan in that period.

In the summer Teva filed for approval of a generic version of the drug but was promptly filed with a patent infringement lawsuit by Takeda, which is claiming patent protection out to 2027.

Rescula sales were $2m in the quarter from the Japanese market only, and Mallinckrodt is buying global rights to this product, along with two phase III candidates - VTS-270 for the treatment of inherited neurodegenerative disease Niemann-Pick Type C and CPP-1X/sulindac for familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP).

The deal comes after an acquisitive few years for Mallinckrodt as it tries to build a pipeline of new drug treatments and become what chief executive Mark Trudeau describes as “an innovation-driven specialty pharmaceutical growth company focusing on improving patient outcomes in severe and critical conditions”.

The company snapped up Infacare for £425m earlier this year to claim a treatment for jaundice, added regenerative medicine firm Stratatech for an undisclosed sum last in 2016 and has also bought Cadence Pharma for $1.3bn, Questcor for $6.5bn, immunotherapy outfit Therakos for $1.3bn and nuclear imaging specialist IBA Molecular for £690m in the last three years.

Article by
Phil Taylor

2nd January 2018

From: Sales

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