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AstraZeneca Acquires Arrow Therapeutics To Broaden Anti-Infective Capabilities

1 February 2007 -- AstraZeneca today announced an agreement to acquire Arrow Therapeutics Ltd., a privately owned UK biotechnology company, focused on the discovery and development of anti-viral therapies. The total share capital of Arrow Therapeutics will be purchased for $150m cash, subject to debt and working capital adjustment. The transaction is expected to close early in 2007.

The deal is an important strategic step for AstraZeneca, strengthening its portfolio of promising anti-infective treatments from external opportunities and providing a widely recognised expert group and technology platform in an area of research that complements internal capabilities in anti-bacterials. The deal also fits with AstraZeneca's decision to re-focus its disease area research with infection and anti-bacterials now one of the company's key therapy areas.

The anti-viral programmes developed by Arrow Therapeutics, include several different approaches towards Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV).

The acquisition of Arrow Therapeutics augments AstraZeneca's portfolio with clinical and pre-clinical compounds and programmes. These assets include two anti-HCV compounds which both target the novel NS5a protein, including A-831 in Phase I. Arrow's most advanced compound is RSV604, currently in Phase II clinical development and partnered with Novartis. RSV604 is a first-in-class, small molecule, oral anti-RSV compound.

John Patterson, Executive Director, Development, AstraZeneca, said: “Arrow Therapeutics is an excellent opportunity to acquire a world-class anti-viral capability to add to our own anti-bacterial research capabilities and promising early stage compounds. AstraZeneca is determined to focus on areas of highest unmet needs and we have identified anti-bacterials and anti-virals as a key opportunity.”

Jan Lundberg, Executive Vice President of Discovery, AstraZeneca, added: “We intend to utilise the best of both organisations with an innovation-led culture paramount; we'll look to preserve the entrepreneurial culture of Arrow Therapeutics, while at the same time gaining the benefits available to us from applying the breadth and depth of AstraZeneca's global capabilities.”

Ken Powell, CEO of Arrow Therapeutics, said: “We are delighted to join AstraZeneca, which has a proven track record in successfully enhancing its research capabilities by the acquisition of smaller biotechnology companies. Our scientists are looking forward to working within the AstraZeneca research framework. We will be helping to build a complementary anti-viral franchise by utilising the resources of AstraZeneca to realise the full potential of the Arrow Therapeutics programmes and to develop a major pipeline of new anti-viral medicines. We are very excited about this opportunity for our team who have made such an important contribution to the success of Arrow Therapeutics.”

Arrow Therapeutics currently has 57 employees at its facility in London, UK. AstraZeneca's immediate plans are for Arrow Therapeutics to become a hub for anti-viral discovery activities remaining at its present central London site.

Publisher Contact Information:

Arrow Therapeutics Ltd.
+44 (0)20 7015 1000

Company profile of Arrow Therapeutics Ltd. (Acquired by AstraZeneca)
Past press releases of Arrow Therapeutics Ltd. (Acquired by AstraZeneca).


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