31 drugmakers, biotechs form pro-M&A group

More than two dozen life science, pharmaceutical and biotech organizations partnered Oct. 4 to build a coalition advocating for mergers and acquisitions in the life sciences industry. 

The new group is called the Partnership for the U.S. Life Science Ecosystem, or PULSE. The founding members include Merck, AbbVie, Amgen and Novartis. 

In a news release, PULSE said the Federal Trade Commission's new approach to antitrust enforcement could overturn decades of a "long-standing precedent" of encouraging "pro-innovation M&A." It argues that mergers and acquisitions are necessary for the industry, citing data that it takes 10 to 15 years and $2.6 billion to develop a new drug. 

"The U.S. life sciences ecosystem depends on mergers and acquisitions as well as other collaborations to bring together the resources, investment and expertise needed to develop and deliver new treatments and cures for patients," the organization's website says. 

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