AstraZeneca acquires LogicBio for $68 million to bolster genomics pipeline
Published: Oct 03, 2022
By Mark Terry
Through its Alexion subsidiary, AstraZeneca is acquiring Lexington, Mass.-based LogicBio Therapeutics in a deal worth $68 million. The deal bolsters AstraZeneca’s efforts in genomics and rare diseases.
AstraZeneca bought Alexion Pharmaceuticals for $39 billion in 2020 with a focus on oncology and cardiovascular, renal, metabolic and respiratory diseases. Alexion, a rare-disease company, focused on disorders of the complement system, part of the human immune system.
Fred Chereau, president and CEO of LogicBio, stated the company is “excited about the opportunity” to bring its “science and expertise in genetic medicine to Alexion.”
The acquisition of LogicBio shows AstraZeneca pushing harder into the rare disease market. In September 2021, AstraZeneca picked up Caelum BioSciences, a rare-disease company, for $500 million. Included in that deal was Caelum’s CAEL-101, a potential first-in-class fibril-reactive monoclonal antibody to treat the rare disease light chain (AL) amyloidosis.
LogicBio leverages the body’s natural DNA repair process to treat rare genetic disorders.
LogicBio has two technology platforms: GeneRide and sAAVy. GeneRide is a gene editing platform that uses a cell’s natural DNA repair process, which allows the insertion of a corrective gene into the human genome while avoiding the risks connected to other gene therapy and gene editing technologies. It uses an engineered viral vector to deliver a correct gene, or transgene, to the nuclei of a patient’s cells.
sAAVy is a gene delivery capsid platform that improves potency and tissue tropism — the cells and tissues of a host that support viral or bacterial growth — with increased safety. LogicBio is also working with the Children’s Medical Research Institute to use sAAVy to design and develop libraries of advanced adeno-associated virus (AAV) capsids.
The company’s pipeline includes a clinical product, LB-001, for methylmalonic acidemia (MMA), that it has partnered with China’s CANbridge. Preclinical pipeline products include gene editing approaches to treat Crigler-Najjar, Tyrosinemia Type 1, Wilson disease and gene therapies for Fabry disease and Pompe disease. It has additional partnerships with CANbridge and with Daiichi Sankyo.
Under the terms of the acquisition, Alexion will acquire all outstanding shares of LogicBio in cash for $2.07 per share. That figure, coming to about $68 million, is about seven times Friday’s closing price of approximately $0.27 cents. LogicBio shares climbed to $2.01 in premarket trading.
“The proposed acquisition of LogicBio is a significant development for our growing research in genomic medicine,” said Marc Dunoyer, CEO, Alexion, AstraZeneca Rare Disease.
Dunoyer went on to say, “The scientific collaboration between Alexion and AstraZeneca has been a substantial area of focus since last year’s acquisition and the addition of LogicBio will expand this foundational work.”