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Baxter has purchased Sigma-Tau’s portfolio of cancer treatments for €793.5M ($900 million). With this important acquisition, Baxter is reinforcing its oncology presence by owning Oncaspar, a treatment against acute lymphocytic leukemia.
Oncaspar is the only FDA-approved pegylated formulation of L-asparaginase, the enzyme that depletes the aminoacid asparagine. Whilst normal cells can produce asparagine, leukemic cells are unable to produce enough asparagine to survive on their own. L-asparaginase is given to leukemia patients to ensure depletion of asparagine that is circulating in the blood. Depletion, in other words starving the leukemic cells, of asparagine ultimately results in leukemic cell death. Oncaspar’s annual sales amount to €88M, according to the statement. Still, the purchase needs to be approved by the competent authorities.For more click here