Issue Date: October 5, 2009
J&J, Crucell Sign Antibody Deal
In a bid to increase its vaccines presence, Johnson & Johnson will pay roughly $440 million for an 18% stake in Dutch biotechnology firm Crucell. The companies are also collaborating to develop a universal monoclonal antibody product to treat and prevent all influenza A strains, including the novel 2009 H1N1 and avian H5N1 viruses. Crucell will be tasked with developing influenza antibodies it has already discovered through Phase IIa, along with any other antibodies that come out of the research pact. J&J will handle late-stage development and commercialization. The companies will also work together to make antibody or vaccine products against three other disease targets. Earlier this year, Crucell was in talks to merge with Wyeth, but the deal failed to materialize after Wyeth agreed to be acquired by Pfizer. Last year, Crucell had sales of roughly $415 million.
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