Shire Acquires Fibrotech For US$75 Million

Shire’s acquisition of the University of Melbourne-affiliated Fibrotech highlights the potential for commercialization in public-private partnerships.

AsianScientist (May 15, 2014) – Better treatments for fibrosis sufferers is on the horizon following a global drugmaker’s decision to buy the University of Melbourne-affiliated biopharmaceutical company, Fibrotech.

The US$75 million purchase by Shire, a global specialty biopharmaceutical company, will lead to the development of a new class of drugs to prevent the health burdens associated with fibrosis. The purchase also includes additional payments based on successful completion of development and regulatory milestones.

University of Melbourne Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Jim McCluskey welcomed the acquisition.

“This acquisition is a great achievement by the University and its researchers and will have significant benefit to the Australian biotechnology sector,” he said.

“The purchase of Fibrotech also highlights the importance of commercialization and collaboration between academia and industry at a time when funding for commercialization of research is being assessed. This is a great result for all involved and demonstrates the value of industry joint ventures such as commercialization fund Uniseed,” McCluskey concluded.

University of Melbourne and St Vincent’s Hospital Professor Darren Kelly, Founder and CEO of Fibrotech, said the acquisition was an excellent outcome.

“The team at Fibrotech are very excited about this acquisition as Shire is strategically aligned with our commitment to renal and fibrotic conditions, including rare diseases – areas of high unmet medical need,” he said.

Shire will undertake the further development of Fibrotech’s lead product FT011. In addition, Shire acquires Fibrotech’s library of novel molecules, including FT061 – a small oral molecule with the potential to address both the inflammatory and pro-fibrotic components of fibrosis.


Source: University of Melbourne.

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