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GSK Has Tens Of Billions Of Acquisitions! Join AstraZeneca And Pfizer
Dec 05, 2018

PARP inhibitor market breakout


In fact, the PARP inhibitor market has become increasingly crowded and there are currently four products on the market. In addition to AstraZeneca's first approved Lynparza and Clovis Oncology's Rubaraca, Zejula will face Pfizer's latest approved Talzenna competition.


In the third quarter of this year, as a second-line maintenance therapy for ovarian cancer, Zejula received $63 million in sales, up from $54 million in the second quarter, but still far behind the fast-growing Lynparza's 1.69 in the third quarter. Billion dollars in sales (total sales in the first three quarters reached $438 million). Lynparza has recently been approved for the treatment of breast cancer, and sales will go up. Rubraca's sales for the third quarter of this year were approximately $23 million.


Analysts predict that Zejula's annual sales this year is expected to reach 240 million US dollars, and by 2023 into the threshold of 1 billion US dollars.


In fact, GSK's price per share for the acquisition is $75, which is 110% higher than the average price of Tesaro for nearly 30 days. In addition, it also bears the debt of the latter. The industry generally believes that the acquisition of GSK is too high for Tesaro. As a result of the merger, GSK shares fell 7%, the biggest drop in a single day in the past decade.


However, in the view of Hal Barron, head of GSK's R&D department, the importance of PARP inhibitors is greater than what is currently shown, and Zejula has more commercial potential to be tapped.


GSK is not just staring at BRCA mutations (tumor cells carrying BRCA mutations are highly sensitive to PARP inhibitors), but also want to find opportunities outside of ovarian cancer.


Zejula is conducting a trial to evaluate its therapeutic effect on patients with ovarian cancer with homologous recombination defects (HRD). Barron said that only 15% of patients with ovarian cancer express BRCA mutations, while as many as 50% of patients show signs of HRD.


In addition, Zejula has also conducted tests for lung cancer, breast cancer and prostate cancer, both monotherapy and combination therapy, including a combination of the PD-1 antibody dostarlimab developed by Tesaro. "Zejula will prove that it can benefit as a first-line therapy for ovarian cancer patients other than BRCA mutations, and we are very optimistic about this," Barron said.


In order to ensure that Zejula's expanded application plan works, GSK needs to identify the right patient. The genetic testing company 23andMe, which has established a partnership with it, will be of great use and can help GSK optimize its research and development line by deepening the genetic mechanism.


Reconstructing anti-tumor business


Since taking over in 2017, GSK CEO Emma Walmsley has completely adjusted the company's R&D business and has embarked on a plan to refocus the anti-tumor field.


In the 2014 tripartite asset swap transaction, GSK sold its oncology business to Novartis as a whole, and since then the company has no sales team for antineoplastic agents. Today, GSK's most promising anticancer drug is the BCMA antibody GSK2857916, which has been in Phase II clinical trials for multiple myeloma in July this year. In the "Pharmaceutical Industry 2018 Outlook" report, Evaluate Pharma listed GSK2857916 as one of the top five R&D projects, with sales expected to reach $1.37 billion by 2024.


The acquisition of Tesaro will directly change the business foundation of GSK's oncology business and strengthen its anti-tumor development line. In fact, Axel Hoos, head of GSK's oncology department, said in an interview a month ago that the company may withdraw its research and development work from its long-term respiratory treatment field as a pillar, further adding to the more promising anti-tumor field.


The gradual exit from the respiratory treatment field is a major shift in the restructuring plan that Walmsley threw last year, which also reflects the recent decline in related products. In the third quarter of this year, despite the strong growth of the newer Nucala and Trelegy, the overall sales of GSK's respiratory system products remained flat, which also put more pressure on the “blockbuster” Advair, which is close to the imitation of the generic drug.


“For a long time, the field of respiratory therapy has been the driving force behind GSK drug development, and we have also achieved great success in this area. But today, this business has been fairly stable and there is not much growth prospects in the future,” Hoos said.

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