April 16 Indian drugmaker Piramal Healthcare
has agreed to buy a research and development portfolio
from Bayer AG, the company said, in a deal that gives
Piramal rights to florbetaben, a possible Alzheimer treatment.
Florbetaben, which is in the final stages of clinical
trials, works by detecting symptoms in probable sufferers of
Alzheimer's, and is expected to allow earlier detection and
specific treatment of the disease, Piramal said in a statement.
Florbetaben is racing with similar Alzheimer's imaging
agents from global pharmaceutical companies such as Eli Lilly
and Co, Pfizer Inc and General Electric Co
to enter a global market estimated at anywhere from $1
billion to $5 billion.
Piramal will acquire intellectual property, worldwide
development, marketing and distribution rights of florbetaben
and other clinical and pre-clinical assets of Bayer's molecular
imaging business in the deal. Financial aspects of the deal were
"We plan to build a promising portfolio in the pharma space,
including our newly acquired molecular imaging assets, which
will help us create a global branded pharma business," Ajay
Piramal, chairman of the Piramal Group, was quoted as saying.