According to a recent report published by Reuters, the future looks brighter for patients affected by hepatitis C. The news agency announced on Saturday that Bristol-Myers Squibb agreed to take Inhibitex in exchange of $2.5 billion to create hepatitis C treatment.
The biopharmaceutical company will extend its list of medicines. The new treatment will be created with the help of Inhibitex, a company that is specialized in the production of drugs against viral and bacterial infections. Bristol is not the only company that gained from the recent transaction. Inhibitex added a 163 percent growth to its closing price of $9.87 on Friday. The New York-based company paid $26 per share in order to complete the deal.
More than 180 million people worldwide are affected by hepatitis C – one of the most severe liver diseases at present. Given these statistics, biopharmaceutical companies are doing their best to produce new and efficient drugs that could improve the patients’ health condition.
The competition between biopharmaceutical companies is very strong now because every drug manufacturer tries to draw patients on its side. There was another deal concerning the production of the hepatitis C treatment last year. In November 2011, Pharmasset Inc was acquired by Gilead Sciences Inc in exchange of $11 billion. The deal was at 89 percent premium as opposed to Bristol-Inhibitex’s 163 percent.
The recent deal between Bristol and Inhibitex is more likely to succeed on the market. Inhibitex produces INX-189, an oral drug in Phase II or mid-stage development which has good results on patients. Bristol aims to combine INX-189 with products from its pipeline to create an all-oral regimen for the liver disease. These medicines could help eliminate interferons which often cause flu-like side effects that determine many hepatitis C patients to stop or delay their treatments.
Although the treatment is expected to be launched in 2012, Bristol will not register earnings sooner than 2016. The earnings per share will amount to 4 cents in 2012 and 5 cents in 2013.