Company gains mid-stage candidate for multiple sclerosis and three clinical anticancer agents.

Abbott Laboratories agreed to pay $450 million to take over Facet Biotech, beating out Biogen Idec, which offered almost $430 million in December 2009. The deal will enhance Abbott’s early- and mid-stage pipeline with biologics in immunology and oncology.

Abbott will acquire Facet for $27 per share in cash, a 66.77% premium over its last closing price of $16.19. Biogen Idec first proposed to pay $15 a share while it was in private discussions with Facet, then went public with a hostile bid of just $14.5 per share, and finally bumped it up to $17.5 per share. All three attempts were rejected by Facet, which believes that Biogen Idec was undervaluing the company.

Commenting on the acceptance of Abbott’s takeover offer, Faheem Hasnain, president and CEO of Facet, says, “We believe this transaction provides full and fair value for our stockholders and validates the potential of Facet’s clinical and technology assets, all of which has resulted from the effort and dedication of our employees. Abbott’s depth of expertise in immunology and oncology makes it an excellent organization to maximize the full potential of these promising clinical programs and technologies.”

Facet’s pipeline includes daclizumab, a Phase II biologic intended to treat multiple sclerosis (MS) and partnered with Biogen Idec. It is a humanized antibody that selectively inhibits the IL-2 receptor on activated T cells. Studies to date have shown that daclizumab may reduce the inflammatory lesions associated with MS and has the potential to offer enhanced efficacy over many existing MS therapies along with a favorable safety profile.

Facet also has three cancer drug candidates in clinical trials. Volociximab is in Phase II against solid tumors and is partnered with Biogen Idec, Elotuzumab is in Phase I as a treatment for multiple myeloma and is partnered with Bristol-Myers Squibb, and PDL192 is a wholly owned Phase I product being tested against solid tumors.

Abbott’s cancer pipeline includes three compounds in mid- to late-stage trials: ABT-263, a Bcl-2 family protein antagonist; ABT-888, a PARP inhibitor; and ABT-869, a multitargeted kinase inhibitor.

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