French pharma company Servier has acquired cancer drug Pixuvri (pixantrone) from US-based CTI BioPharma for an undisclosed price in a move to strengthen its oncology portfolio.
Pixuvri has approval for the treatment of adult patients having multiply relapsed or refractory aggressive non-Hodgkin B-cell lymphoma, a type of blood cancer.
The drug is a cytotoxic medicine which functions by interfering with the DNA within cells and stopping them from making more copies of DNA. Through this process, cancer cells cannot divide and eventually are killed, said Servier.
Pixuvri is indicated as monotherapy in the European Union for the treatment of multiply relapsed or refractory aggressive non-Hodgkin B-cell lymphoma in adult patients. The drug is also approved across Iceland, Israel, Liechtenstein, Myanmar, Norway, Russia, Ukraine, and Pakistan.
Servier VP and business development and licensing global head Eric Falcand said: “We have a strong commitment to providing effective solutions for patients living with cancer. Pixuvri is an effective treatment that received standard European marketing authorization in June, and today marks a new step towards achieving Servier’s long term goals.”
Servier said that it has completed an asset purchase agreement with CTI Biopharma, following which the worldwide rights of the cancer drug have been transferred to it.
The French pharma company, under an exclusive license from CTI BioPharma (formerly Cell Therapeutics), commercialised Pixuvri across the world, in all countries where it was approved.
Servier executive VP and R&D global head Claude Bertrand said: “The acquisition of Pixuvri is an important step towards Servier’s long-term strategy to become a key player in oncology. Within oncology, one of our key focuses is hematology, and we now have two medicines that are marketed globally alongside a strong and innovative pipeline of drug candidates which includes CAR-T therapies.
“As part of our strategy, we are committed to invest 50% of our R&D budget in oncology.”
Last year, Servier acquired Ireland-based Shire’s oncology business for $2.4bn (£1.96bn). The deal gave Servier ownership of oncology treatment Oncaspar (pegaspargase), and also the ex-US rights of Onivyde (irinotecan pegylated liposomal formulation).