- Although the companies are staying relatively mum, Switzerland-based Actelion and U.S. biotech company ZS Pharma have announced that they are in preliminary talks regarding a "strategic transaction."
- ZS Pharma's stock closed up 28.4% on Thursday on news of a potential acquisition by Actelion.
- Actelion's lead drug candidate, ZS-9, treats hyperalkemia, a build-up of excessive potassium in the body that could lead to heart failure.
Despite the lack of open commitment at the moment, it appears that Actelion and ZS Pharma are headed for some type of deal—potentially a buyout.
ZS Pharma currently has a market value of $1.9 billion. In addition to definitive news of the talks, Bloomberg reported last month that Actelion had offered to buy ZS Pharma last month for $2.5 billion.
The FDA won't rule on ZS-9 until May 2016, but a deal could come as early as this quarter, adding to an extraordinary string of biotech and healthcare M&As in 2015 that have upended the sectors' business landscape.