Novartis Goes Big On Gene Therapy With $8.7bn AveXis Acquisition
The Swiss major has made a larger-than-expected bolt-on buy, using a large chunk of its $13bn windfall from GSK to get hold of a potential cure for spinal muscular atrophy and an additional gene therapy platform, as well as manufacturing capabilities.
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Partnered with AbbVie on a wet AMD gene therapy, Regenxbio is also advancing wholly owned candidates for Duchenne muscular dystrophy and MPS I and MPS II.
Companies such as Novartis, Roche or Takeda are heavily invested in the advanced therapeutics field, usually spreading their bets across multiple modalities. The remaining challenges offer opportunities for the next wave of innovation to transform the field once again and make a dent in the larger market of common diseases and solid tumors.
Gene therapy remains attractive when data show new technologies can advance the field, but gene regulation, editing and RNA therapies are grabbing investors’ attention, panelists said at ARM’s Cell and Gene Meeting on the Mesa.