Roche Makes $4.8 Billion Bid for Spark Therapeutics and Its Gene Therapy Programs (BioSpace)

Roche Makes $4.8 Billion Bid for Spark Therapeutics and Its Gene Therapy Programs

Research by UF’s Dr. William Hauswirth is behind the gene therapy that resulted in Spark Therapeutics’ Luxturna, an FDA-approved gene therapy for a rare, genetic form of blindness.

Shares of Spark Therapeutics have skyrocketed more than 120 percent this morning after Swiss pharma giant Roche announced plans to acquire all outstanding shares of the gene therapy company’s stock at $114.50 per share, for a total of about $4.8 billion.

In premarket trading, shares have jumped from Friday’s close of $51.56 per share to $113.70 as Roche looks to bring the company’s gene therapy treatments under its umbrella, much like neighboring company Novartis has done over the past year with its own gene therapy acquisitions. One of the gene therapy companies Novartis acquired, AveXis, is closing in on an approval for a gene therapy treatment for spinal muscular atrophy.

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