Emergent snaps up Adapt and its opioid overdose therapy for $735m

pharmafile | August 29, 2018 | News story | Research and Development, Sales and Marketing Emergent, Narcan, naloxone, opioid crisis, opioids, pharma 

Emergent BioSolutions has announced it has signed an agreement to acquire Adapt Pharma at a valuation of $735 million, a sum broken down into an up-front payment of $635 million and up to $100 million in milestone and royalty payments through to 2022.

The deal means that Emergent picks up Narcan (naloxone HCl), Adapt’s nasal spray for the treatment of opioid overdose. The therapy is currently the only needle-free product approved for the purpose by the FDA and Health Canada, specifically in the treatment of known or suspected opioid overdose as manifested by respiratory and/or central nervous system depression.

Emergent has said that it expects to reap around $200-220 million from the additional revenue in 2019, with that figure thought to grow the following year. The shares of Opiant, a commercial partner of Adapt, leapt up by 42% on news of the new partnership.

 “The acquisition of Adapt Pharma, and with it the NARCAN Nasal Spray, the leading community use emergency treatment for opioid overdose, is directly in line with our mission – to protect and enhance life,” commented Daniel J Abdun-Nabi, CEO of Emergent BioSolutions. “Adding this important life-saving product to our portfolio of preparedness solutions allows us to apply our experience gained from two decades of partnering with the U.S. government to safeguard public health against biological and chemical threats to address the devastating increase in deaths due to opioid overdoses, one of the most serious public health threats facing the nation today.”

Treatments like Narcan and other naloxone products could prove crucial during the US’ ongoing opioid crisis, a health threat which claimed the lives of over 70,000 in the nation last year. The US Surgeon General called for more citizens to carry naloxone medicines in an advisory statement earlier this year.

Seamus Mulligan, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Adapt, also remarked: “I am delighted that this transaction will bring Adapt and Emergent together to focus on the opioid crisis – the leading public health issue of our time. With a shared mission of protecting lives from public health threats, I am confident that our combined expertise and resources will accelerate access to Narcan Nasal Spray through investments in public awareness and manufacturing capacity while maintaining a responsible pricing approach. It will also allow us to progress Adapt’s R&D pipeline of additional opioid overdose and addiction treatment options. To maintain the outstanding momentum our team has generated, Adapt will continue to focus on the opioid crisis as part of Emergent’s devices business unit and all employees and facilities will be retained.”

Matt Fellows

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