Abbott strikes deal for kidney drug

By Dow Jones Newswires-Wall Street Journal
Posted Sep. 24, 2010 at 6:21 a.m.

Abbott Laboratories has agreed to pay at least $450 million for international rights to develop and commercialize Reata Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s experimental chronic kidney-disease drug bardoxolone.

Drug makers have been looking for ways to bolster their product pipelines to replace lost revenue as patents on a host of blockbuster treatments are set to expire in the next several years.

Abbott has been in acquisition mode lately, agreeing in May to buy Piramal Healthcare Ltd.’s branded generic-drugs unit for $3.7 billion. It has weathered the downturn better than some because of its broad product base.

Abbott said in July its second-quarter core earnings rose higher than expected as sales jumped 18%.

Abbott is also acquiring a minority equity stake in Reata, the Irving, Texas, drug maker.

Bardoxolone, Reata’s lead drug candidate, was shown in a midstage study to significantly improve kidney function in patients with advanced chronic kidney disease and Type-2 diabetes.

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