Thermo Fisher to Acquire Brammer Bio in $1.7 Billion Gene-Therapy Deal

Thermo Fisher to Acquire Brammer Bio in $1.7 Billion Gene-Therapy Deal

Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. said it is buying Alachua-based Brammer Bio for $1.7 billion in a move that would expand the lab-equipment company’s presence in the rapidly growing field of gene therapy.

Closely held Brammer Bio, owned by private-equity firm Ampersand Capital Partners, provides pharmaceutical companies developing gene therapies and gene-modified cell therapies with outsourced research and drugmaking services.

Gene therapies aim to replace defective genes with healthy ones, and researchers consider them to be a promising treatment option for intractable inherited diseases. Nearly 300 gene therapies are under development, aiming to treat more than 100 diseases, according to a recent report from a drug-industry trade group.

Brammer Bio was formed in 2016 through the merger of Brammer Biopharmaceuticals and Florida Biologix, which was started a decade earlier as part of the University of Florida. The company makes so-called viral vectors. In gene therapy, a normal gene is delivered via what scientists call a vector, typically a virus genetically altered to contain human DNA.

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