MorphoSys eyes targets to widen drug pipeline-paper

FRANKFURT Wed Dec 23, 2009 2:43am EST

FRANKFURT Dec 23 (Reuters) - German biotech firm Morphosys (MORG.DE), which supplies research services to drug majors, is looking for takeover targets to expand its range of experimental drugs, Chief Executive Simon Moroney told a German newspaper.

"We are only investing money in substances that fit 100 percent to our portfolio," the CEO also said in an interview with daily Financial Times Deutschland published on Wednesday.

Some biotech companies whose finances were battered by the financial crisis are offering themselves to MorphoSys as takeover candidates, he added.

MorphoSys has built up a repository of more than 10 billion genetically engineered antibodies, dubbed HuCAL, that drug makers including Pfizer (PFE.N) and Novartis (NOVN.VX) use as research tools or as the basis for new treatments.

The company is also working on its own drug candidates, which are mainly designed to fight cancer and inflammatory diseases. (Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by Hans Peters)

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