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Allergan To Sell Brazikumab To AstraZeneca, Zenpep To Nestle Under AbbVie Merger

Allergan plc (AGN), which is in deal to be bought by AbbVie (ABBV), announced Monday that it has entered into definitive agreements to divest brazikumab (IL-23 inhibitor) and Zenpep (pancrelipase) to AstraZeneca (AZN,AZN.L) and Nestle SA (NSRGY.PK,NSTR.L), respectively.

The companies did not disclose the financial details of the transactions.

The agreements are in conjunction with the ongoing regulatory approval process for AbbVie's acquisition of Allergan to create Allergan Aesthetics.

The closings of the acquisitions of brazikumab and Zenpep are contingent upon receipt of U.S. Federal Trade Commission and European Commission approval, closing of AbbVie's pending acquisition of Allergan and the satisfaction of other customary closing conditions.

AstraZeneca will acquire brazikumab, an investigational IL-23 inhibitor in Phase 2b/3 development for Crohn's Disease and in Phase 2 development for ulcerative colitis, including global development and commercial rights.

Further, Swiss food giant Nestle will acquire and take full operational ownership of gastrointestinal medication Zenpep upon closing the transaction with customary transition support from Allergan.

Zenpep is a treatment, which is available in the United States, for exocrine pancreatic insufficiency due to cystic fibrosis and other conditions. Zenpep's 2018 net sales were $237 million.

Nestle also will acquire Viokace, another pancreatic enzyme preparation, as part of the same transaction.

On January 10, AbbVie and Allergan received conditional approval of the transaction by the European Commission, subject to the approved divestiture of brazikumab and other conditions.

AbbVie and Allergan continue to expect to close the deal in the first quarter.

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