Sarepta Therapeutics, Inc. ( SRPT ) entered into an agreement to acquire a multifunctional manufacturing facility on 26 acres of land in Massachusetts for $25 million. The deal is expected to close in July this year depending on certain conditions and extensions in the agreement.
The acquisition also allows scope of future expansion. The manufacturing facility will support approximately 40 technicians and support staff when fully operational. Sarepta intends to further enhance and scale up its proprietary manufacturing processes for phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomer (PMO) chemistries at the facility.
We note that Sarepta is one of the global leaders in the development of PMO chemistries for RNA therapeutics. The company also plans to use the facility to manufacture drugs to support clinical trials of its exon skipping therapies for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), as well as research and development of future potential products and modified PMO chemistries.
Sarepta's lead candidate is eteplirsen (DMD). Last month, the company announced that it plans to submit a New Drug Application (NDA) to the FDA for eteplirsen by year end. Sarepta's decision on the filing of regulatory application for eteplirsen was based on a guidance letter from the FDA. The FDA's letter and the detailed guidance came as a huge relief for Sarepta. Sarepta expects the candidate to receive accelerated approval next year.
We remind investors that Sarepta Therapeutics currently does not have any approved product in its kitty. The successful development and commercialization of eteplirsen is crucial for the company. We expect investor focus to remain on eteplirsen in the near future.
Sarepta Therapeutics currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks include Gilead Sciences Inc. ( GILD ), Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ( ALXN ) and AVEO Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ( AVEO ). While Gilead holds a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Alexion and AVEO carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
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