Roche snaps up Arius platform for $189M

Another day, another Roche deal. The pharma giant announced this morning that it is paying $189 million to buy Canada's Arius Research, a move that will help beef up its portfolio of experimental therapies for cancer and inflammation. Shareholders controlling a majority of the company's shares have already signed off on the pact, which provides a 14.5 percent price premium over Tuesday's close. The deal delivers Arius' platform technology for selecting antibodies--a hot field in biotechnology--as well as a pipeline of early-stage antibody candidates.

The pact comes just one day after an announced deal to buy Mirus Bio for $125 million and two days after Roche's offer to pay $44 billion for all outstanding shares of Genentech. It's also another sign that Roche CEO Severin Schwan is wasting no time in building up the company around innovative therapies and technologies.

"Arius' promising platform and early pipeline of new antibody candidates represent an excellent fit with our own progressing research in the fields of cancer and immunology," said Lee Babiss, head of global research at Roche. Look for the deal to close in the third quarter.

- see Roche's release
- check out the AP report

ALSO: Roche's offer to acquire the outstanding shares of Genentech for close to $44 billion has stirred investors' interest in companies like Elan and Isis, which could present new acquisition targets. Report

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