AbbVie's waiting for FDA approval on a hepatitis C combo therapy. OraSure makes a rapid test to detect the virus. And professional truck drivers in the U.S. are more than 5 times as likely as other Americans to have it.
Gilead Sciences convinced an panel of arbitrators that rival Roche had no legitimate claims on Sovaldi, its record-setting hepatitis C treatment, but the antiviral pioneer still faces patent spats with a host of challengers looking to cash in on next-generation combo therapies for the disease.
U.S. drugmakers have embraced the tax inversion strategy with open arms as of late, buying up foreign companies right and left and hauling overseas to take advantage of their lower rates. But U.S. officials are looking to stop them in their tracks--an intent that has some pharma investors worried.
Without explaining why, AbbVie has decided not to appeal a court ruling that extended rights to gay jurors which materialized out of litigation it has been waging with GlaxoSmithKline over the pricing of an HIV med. But it is seldom a good idea for a pharma company to antagonize its patient base. And gay men make up a significant number of the patients on HIV drugs sold by the drugmaker.
For months, AbbVie mounted a dogged pursuit of Shire, learning from the mistakes of the now-thwarted Pfizer and maintaining its patients without letting lines go cold, largely avoiding major missteps as it closed in on its target.
AbbVie may have just struck a deal with Shire in order to diversify beyond its top drug, Humira. But that doesn't mean the drug isn't steamrolling.
When AbbVie buys out Shire for nearly $55 billion in a deal the two companies agreed on last week, there will be no golden parachute awaiting Shire chief Flemming Ornskov. Instead, there's a signing bonus in order: The helmsman will pocket just under $10 million for staying on with the combined company in a new role.
Gilead Sciences got to the market first with an interferon-free oral hepatitis C fighter, a category projected to hit $20 billion in sales by 2020. Its Sovaldi has been racking up unprecedented sales, and a raft of litigation, as other drugmakers look for a way to get a piece of that action.
Now that AbbVie has hammered out its $55 billion takeover deal for Shire, analysts are looking for the next big biopharma tax inversion deal.
With a bid reaching nearly $55 billion and some goodies for the top execs, AbbVie was finally able to get Ireland-based Shire to surrender its independence, a portfolio of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and rare disease drugs, and its low Irish tax base.