Emergent BioSolutions to acquire anthrax treatment
Emergent BioSolutions, a Gaithersburg-based drug maker with facilities in Baltimore, has acquired a drug used to treat anthrax from GlaxoSmithKline in a deal worth up to $96 million.
Under the deal announced Wednesday, Emergent will pay $76 million cash upfront and up to $20 million in product sales and milestone payments to acquire Raxibacumab, a drug used to treat inhaled anthrax.
The deal will add to Emergent’s portfolio of countermeasures for infectious diseases and advance the company’s goal of growing business at its recently expanded Baltimore manufacturing facility. The drug comes with a $130 million federal contract. In partnership with the federal government, Emergent spent $80 million to double the size of its manufacturing plant near Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center.
As one of three Centers for Innovation in Advanced Development and Manufacturing, the facility can be called on by the federal government to mass-produce flu vaccines and has received contracts to manufacture drugs for other public health threats, such as Ebola and Zika.
Emergent already produces a vaccine for adsorbed anthrax known as BioThrax at its facility in Lansing, Mich., for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the federal Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority. The company also is developing NuThrax, a next-generation vaccine for adsorbed anthrax, which is currently in trials.
The Raxibacumab deal comes on the heels of Emergent’s announcement last week that it plans to acquire a smallpox vaccine from Sanofi for up to $125 million, including $97.5 million in cash upfront.