Acceleron will become part of Merck’s pipeline of drugs for rare diseases. Acceleron shareholders will receive $180 in cash for each share, which is a premium of about 2.6% to the company’s closing price on Wednesday. The deal also gives Merck exclusive rights to develop and market sotatercept, a potential blockbuster drug.
XLRN stock dropped 4% yesterday in the trading session. It is now trading at $176.20, marking only 0.48% increase. Acceleron is a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing drugs that treat blood disorders. Its lead product candidate is sotatercept, which is being studied for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension.
The rise of rare diseases has become lucrative for drugmakers. They usually charge higher prices for treatments that serve small patient populations. According to the US National Institute of Health, around 30 million Americans are living with rare diseases. This disease epidemic has prompted a number of pharmaceutical companies to focus on the lucrative rare disease market.