- Johnson & Johnson (J&J) is buying anti-viral specialist company Alios for $1.75 billion.
- One of the most important candidates that comes with the acquisition is AL-8176, a drug in development for the treatment of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a pediatric disease for which there is currently no preventive treatment.
- The deal also nabs J&J two candidates for the treatment of hepatitis C (HCV).
The acquisition of Alios is driven by J&J’s commitment to treating pediatric viral infections, as well as its interest in advancing hepatitis C (HCV) therapeutics. RSV is the leading cause of lower respiratory tract infections in children younger than four and affects up to five million children a year in the US.
J&J is focused on developing anti-viral preventive treatments, as well as treatments for those who are actively infected with RSV. AL-8176, currently in phase II trials, is now an important candidate for further development of potential RSV therapies.
The deal also brings two potential treatments for hepatitis C (HCV). J&J markets Olysio (simepravir), which is intended to be used with Sovaldi (sofosbuvir) for the treatment of HCV types 1 and 4.