September 16, 2015 / 1:30 PM / 4 years ago

Amgen to buy Dezima Pharma for $300 million in cash

(Reuters) - Amgen Inc (AMGN.O) said it will buy biotechnology company Dezima Pharma B.V., adding another cholesterol drug to its expanding portfolio of treatments for cardiovascular diseases.

An Amgen sign is seen at the company's office in South San Francisco, California October 21, 2013. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

Amgen said it will pay $300 million in cash for the Netherlands-based company and up to $1.25 billion on meeting certain development and sales milestones.

The deal adds Dezima’s lead experimental cholesterol treatment, TA-8995, to Amgen’s drug pipeline. The drug was found to be effective in reducing bad cholesterol in a mid-stage study.

Dezima originally licensed rights to the cholesterol drug from Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corp (4508.T) in 2013.

The Amgen agreement gives Mitsubishi Tanabe rights to receive a portion of the payments from Dezima.

Mitsubishi Tanabe will also retain the development and commercialization rights to the drug in certain regions in Asia, including Japan.

Amgen’s cardiovascular portfolio includes Repatha, which was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in August, for patients with hereditary forms of high cholesterol.

The approval expanded Amgen’s pipeline, which includes other heart products and potential treatments like Corlanor and omecamtiv mecarbil.

Covington & Burling and De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek were legal counsels to Amgen. Dezima was advised by Moelis & Co, while NautaDutilh was its legal counsel.

The Thousand Oaks, California-based Amgen’s shares fell 1.8 percent to $150.15 in morning trade on the Nasdaq on Wednesday.

Reporting By Samantha Kareen Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva

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