Vertex Pharma Nabs Alpine Immune Sciences In $4.9 Billion Deal


Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX) will pay $4.9 billion to acquire immunological-focused biotech Alpine Immune Sciences (ALPN), the companies said late Wednesday. Alpine stock rocketed almost 21% on rumors of the deal.




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Alpine’s lead product is in development for patients with IgA nephropathy, a chronic kidney disease that progresses over 10 to 20 years, and can lead to end-stage renal disease, according to Johns Hopkins researchers. The company is due to begin a Phase 3 study in the second half of this year.

The companies expect the deal to close later this quarter.

Alpine stock was briefly halted in late action. When trading resumed, shares soared 36.2%. During the regular session, shares rallied 20.8%, closing at 47.04, on rumors of the takeover deal. Vertex shares dipped 1.2% to 393.02 in late trades.

Vertex Pharmaceuticals Adds To Kidney Diseases Pipeline

Alpine believes its lead drug, povetacicept, could work for patients with other autoimmune diseases that impact the kidneys, such as membranous nephropathy and lupus nephritis.

Chief Executive Mitchell Gold says the announcement “marks a new chapter for Alpine.”

“Povetacicept has demonstrated potential best-in-class attributes in IgA nephropathy and has broad development potential across a number of other autoimmune and inflammatory conditions with significant unmet need,” he said in a statement.

Vertex Pharmaceuticals is already working on kidney disease treatments with its experimental treatment for APOL1-mediated kidney disease. Patients with this genetic condition experience damage to the kidneys that might not be apparent until the organs begin to fail.

Alpine stock is also highly rated, according to IBD Digital. Shares have a perfect Relative Strength Rating of 99, putting their performance in the top 1% of all stocks regardless of industry group. Alpine stock also has a strong Composite Rating of 97, a measure of a stock’s key fundamental and technical metrics.

Follow Allison Gatlin on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, at @IBD_AGatlin.

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