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AstraZeneca Announces Plans to Acquire Fusion


The acquisition will bolster AstraZeneca’s ability to develop radioconjugates for cancer treatments.



AstraZeneca announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Fusion Pharmaceuticals Inc. According to a press release,1 this move is part of AstraZeneca’s larger goal of improving its cancer treatment pipeline.

Specifically, the acquisition will incorporate Fusion’s radioconjugate (RCs) that is being developed to target PSMA for prostate cancer into AstraZeneca’s pipeline.

In a press release, AstraZeneca’s executive vice president in charge of oncology R&D Susan Gailbraith said, “Between thirty and fifty per cent of patients with cancer today receive radiotherapy at some point during treatment, and the acquisition of Fusion furthers our ambition to transform this aspect of care with next generation radioconjugates. Together with Fusion, we have an opportunity to accelerate the development of FPI-2265 as a potential new treatment for prostate cancer, and to harness their innovative actinium-based platform to develop radioconjugates as foundational regimens.”

In the same press release, Fusion CEO John Valliant also said, “This acquisition combines Fusion’s expertise and capabilities in radioconjugates, including our industry-leading radiopharmaceutical R&D, pipeline, manufacturing and actinium-225 supply chain, with AstraZeneca’s leadership in small molecules and biologics engineering to develop novel radioconjugates. Expanding on our existing collaboration with AstraZeneca where we have advanced FPI-2068, an EGFR-cMET targeted radioconjugate into Phase I clinical trials, gives us a unique opportunity to accelerate the development of next-generation radioconjugates with the aim of transforming patient outcomes.”

RCs are an emerging cancer treatment that may prove useful in attempts to move treatments away from traditional methods, such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy. There has been a lot of momentum in the industry to instead focus on treatments that are more specifically targeted therapies.

According to AstraZeneca, RCs are capable of delivering a radioactive isotope directly to the cancer cell, as opposed to targeting large areas of the body. This method may reduce damage to healthy cells and may be more effective at targeting tumors that traditional beam radiation is unable to reach.

Fusion’s most advanced RC program is FPI-2265. This is a potential new treatment for patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. This treatment is currently in Phase II trials. AstraZeneca will also be adding Fusion’s R&D, manufacturing, and supply chain capabilities to its pipeline as well.

While the plan is still awaiting regulatory and shareholder approval, AstraZeneca has offered to purchase Fusion’s outstanding shares at a price of $21.00 per share. The transaction value is expected to be between $2 billion to $2.4 billion, depending on whether specific regulatory milestones are met. The value of Fusion’s shares was determined based on its closing price on March 18, 2024, when the shares were valued at $10.64-per-share.

The deal is expected to close by the second quarter of 2024, depending on various approvals.


  1. AstraZeneca to Acquire Fusion to Accelerate the Development of Next-Generation Radioconjugates to Treat Cancer. AstraZeneca. March 19, 2024. https://www.astrazeneca.com/media-centre/press-releases/2024/astrazeneca-to-acquire-fusion.html
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