Amgen acquires cancer drugmaker for $1.9B

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Amgen will acquire South San Francisco, Calif.-based drugmaker Five Prime Therapeutics for $38 per share in cash, or about $1.9 billion.

The deal, announced March 4, will strengthen Amgen's oncology portfolio. Five Prime's shares rose by 300 percent in late 2020 after it released positive data for its lead asset, gastric cancer drug bemarituzumab.

Five Prime is already partnered with China-based Zai Lab, which will market bemarituzumab in China. However, Amgen will be eligible to receive royalties on the drug's China sales. Gastric cancer is more prevalent in Asia than in other parts of the world, though researchers don't know why. 

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