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AstraZeneca to pay Merck $647M for drug interests

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 3:17am
The Associated Press

WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. (AP) — Merck & Co. said Monday that it will receive a $647 million payment next month as AstraZeneca PLC exercises an option to buy Merck's interest in some AstraZeneca products.

AstraZeneca will obtain Merck's interest in non-proton pump inhibitor products Atacand, Lexxel and Plendil, which treat hypertension; and Entocort, a Crohn's disease treatment, plus some products in development.

AstraZeneca also will have the option to acquire Merck's interest in proton pump inhibitor products like the heartburn treatment Nexium in 2012 or later "under certain circumstances," according to a statement from Merck.

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