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Celgene Expands In Epigenetics

by Lisa M. Jarvis
August 5, 2013 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 91, ISSUE 31

Celgene will pay Acetylon Pharmaceuticals $100 million up front to develop three drug candidates that block histone deacetylases, enzymes that remove an amino group from histone, thereby regulating DNA expression. The deal includes an option for Celgene to acquire the Boston-based epigenetics firm for up to $1.1 billion. The pact is Celgene’s second in epigenetics. Last year, the firm paid Epizyme $90 million to develop drugs that inhibit a class of epigenetic enzymes called histone methyltransferases.

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