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AstraZeneca moves deeper into rare diseases, spending $150M on late-phase hematology prospect

September 29, 2021

AstraZeneca is continuing to build out its rare disease pipeline, pulling the trigger on an option to buy Caelum Biosciences that it picked up in its takeover of Alexion. The buyout gives AstraZeneca control of a phase 3 treatment for the rare hematology disease light chain (AL) amyloidosis.

Alexion secured the right to acquire Caelum early in 2019 as part of a deal that saw it pay $30 million for a 19.9% stake in the biotech. The deal positioned Alexion to make a decision after getting a look at midphase data on a monoclonal antibody designed to take out the amyloid deposits that build up around tissues in AL amyloidosis patients and cause progressive organ damage.

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