Companies

Johnson & Johnson buys stake in Crucell

Johnson & Johnson corporate headquarters in New Brunswick, New Jersey. U.S. health care products maker Johnson & Johnson has bought an 18 per cent stake in Dutch biotechnology company Crucell NV for $440 million in hopes of developing a universal flu vaccine, the companies said on Monday.   | Photo Credit: DANIEL HULSHIZER

U.S. health care products maker Johnson & Johnson has bought an 18 per cent stake in Dutch biotechnology company Crucell for euro 301.8 million ($440 million) in hopes of developing a universal flu vaccine, the companies said on Monday.

In a joint statement, the companies said their immediate focus would be on developing a flu treatment in the form of “monoclonal antibodies” — which bind to a target protein, alerting the body’s own immune system to attack it.

The Leiden, Netherlands-based Crucell was awarded grants worth up to $69 million by the U.S. government in August to develop its range of monoclonal antibodies for influenza, which, Crucell says, have shown early promise in fighting “a wide range” of seasonal and pandemic flu viruses.

The company claims the antibodies can fight any influenza, including swine flu and bird flu, and including those flu strains resistant to Tamiflu — the medicine currently most often used to slow their progression.

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Printable version | Nov 26, 2020 11:25:44 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/companies/Johnson-amp-Johnson-buys-stake-in-Crucell/article16883851.ece

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