Celgene will acquire San Diego-based Impact Biomedicines in a deal worth up to $7 billion, the companies announced Jan. 8.
Impact Biomedicines was formed around reviving fedratinib, a drug intended to treat the bone marrow disorder myelofibrosis and blood cancer polycythemia vera.
“We believe Celgene is the ideal organization to follow through on our mission of maximizing fedratinib’s potential for patients with myelofibrosis,” John Hood, CEO of Impact Biomedicines, said in a news release.
In 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration put a hold on the fedratinib program due to safety concerns, which was lifted after Hood snagged the drug from pharma giant Sanofi. In October, Impact Biomedicines locked down a funding package worth up to $90 million to advance the development and commercialization of fedratinib.
In a three-part deal, New Jersey-based Celgene will pay $1.1 billion upfront in cash, followed by $1.4 billion subject to U.S. Food and Drug Administration approvals. Lastly, fedratinib milestone payments could total $4.5 billion, should global annual net sales exceed $5 billion.
“We believe fedratinib is uniquely positioned as a potential treatment for myelofibrosis and it provides strategic options for us to build leadership in this disease with luspatercept and other pipeline assets,” Nadim Ahmed, president of hematology and oncology for Celgene, said in a news release.