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Pfizer set to acquire Global Blood Therapeutics in deal worth $5.4bn

The acquisition will help accelerate research into sickle cell disease

Pfizer

Pfizer and Global Blood Therapeutics (GBT) have announced that Pfizer will acquire GBT. GBT focuses on drug discovery and development for rare blood disorders and Pfizer has an extensive 30-year background in rare haematology.

The acquisition has the potential to address a variety of critical needs experienced in the underserved sickle cell disease (SCD)  community. There has been a historically high unmet need for treatments that address the central cause of SCD and its acute complications as a debilitating and inherited blood disorder.

SCD affects around 4.5 million people worldwide, with over 45 million people living with the sickle cell trait. The condition is characterised by haemolytic anaemia, acute pain crises and progressive end organ damage.

Acute pain crisis – or vaso-occlusive crisis (VOC) – happens when sickled red blood cells irritate the lining of blood vessels, leading to an inflammatory response and causing vascular occlusion, pain and tissue ischaemia.

GBT has a background of developing SCD treatments, having produced Oxbryta (voxelotor) tablets, as a first-in-class oral drug that directly targets the root of SCD. The drug was approved in the US in November 2019 and is also approved in the EU, the UAE, Oman and Britain.

Oxbryta’s net sales were approximately $195m in 2021 and by leveraging its established global platform, Pfizer intends to speed up the distribution of GBT’s Oxbryta to areas of the world most impacted by SCD.

Albert Bourla, chairman and chief executive officer, Pfizer, said: “SCD is the most common inherited blood disorder, and it disproportionately affects people of African descent. We are excited to welcome GBT colleagues to Pfizer and to work together to transform the lives of patients, as we have long sought to address the needs of this underserved community.”

Pfizer will acquire all the outstanding shares of GBT for $68.50 per share in cash, for a total value of around $5.4bn, including debt and net of cash acquired.

Article by
Fleur Jeffries

9th August 2022

From: Sales

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