Swiss drugmaker Roche has won approval from U.S. antitrust authorities for its $4.3 billion bid to acquire gene therapy specialist Spark Therapeutics. The development clears the way for Roche’s strategic push to position itself in the treatment of rare diseases, including hemophilia A.
In a statement, the Federal Trade Commission said it had approved the deal, which was originally announced in February 2019; Roche will not require any asset sales for the planned merger.
The FTC’s statement says, the evidence “did not indicate that Roche would have the incentive to delay or terminate Spark’s developmental effort for its hemophilia A gene therapy, or that the acquisition would affect Roche’s incentives regarding (its hemophilia treatment drug]) Hemlibra.”
Roche has also got the go-ahead from Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) for the planned merger.
Incidentally, Hemophilia has traditionally been one of the most expensive – and for companies, most lucrative – treatment areas, with clotting factors running into the millions of dollars annually for some cases.