In a merger agreement, Pfizer has agreed to acquire Wyeth Pharmaceuticals for $68 billion. The deal will enable Pfizer, already the largest drug manufacturer in the world, to expand its product portfolio to include both Wyeth’s existing pharmaceutical and biotech therapies, plus those that in development. Wyeth products include many over-the-counter drugs such as the pain reliever Advil®, the cold and allergy formula Dimetapp®, and Centrum® vitamins. The acquisition is pending completion.
Wyeth also manufactures several products to treat bleeding disorders. BeneFIX® is a recombinant factor IX product indicated for the control and prevention of hemorrhagic episodes in patients with hemophilia B, including control and prevention of bleeding in surgical settings. ReFacto® is a recombinant factor VIII (rfVIII) drug indicated for the control and prevention of hemorrhagic episodes. It is also used for surgical prophylaxis and for short-term routine prophylaxis to reduce the frequency of spontaneous bleeding episodes in patients with hemophilia A. ReFacto will no longer be available after May 31, 2009. It will be replaced by XYNTHA™, a recombinant factor VIII product for patients with hemophilia A for the control and prevention of bleeding episodes and surgical prophylaxis.
Pfizer manufacturers LIPITOR®, a cholesterol-lowering medication, which is its best-selling drug.
“The combination of Pfizer and Wyeth will meaningfully deliver Pfizer’s strategic priorities in a single transaction,” said Jeffrey B. Kindler, Pfizer Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, in a statement. “Our combined company will be one of the most diversified in the industry and will benefit from complementary patient-centric units that match speed with the benefits of a global company’s scale and resources.”
Source: The New York Times, January 26 & 27, 2009; Pfizer press release dated January 26, 2009