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Merck Signs Definitive Agreement to Acquire Mirus Bio, Furthering Ambition to Be a Leading Supplier for Viral Vector Manufacturing

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Merck, a leading science and technology company, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire for US$ 600 million. Mirus Bio, part of Gamma Biosciences, is a life science company based in Madison, Wisconsin, USA that specializes in the development and commercialization of transfection reagents, such as TransIT-VirusGEN®. Transfection reagents play a critical role in the production of viral vector-based gene therapies.

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Merck operators monitoring viral vector production in a bioreactor in Merck's Carlsbad, California manufacturing facility. (Photo: Business Wire)

“Viral vector-based cell and gene therapies have demonstrated their potential with more than 20 approvals over the last 10 years1 and will continue to advance, with a projected growth of 30 percent until 20282,” said Matthias Heinzel, Member of the Executive Board of Merck and CEO Life Science. “This acquisition, combined with our comprehensive portfolio, enables us to provide a truly differentiated and integrated offering to meet the growing demand for these life-saving therapies.”

“We have been driving innovation in nucleic acid delivery for two decades,” said Dale Gordon, CEO of Mirus Bio. “Merck’s broad portfolio, scale and global reach, combined with our leading transfection reagents, will help take our business to even greater heights and allow us to serve more customers, and ultimately patients, worldwide.”

Merck’s Process Solutions business offers one of the broadest product portfolios in the industry and provides flexible solutions for viral vector manufacturing to advance cell and gene therapies from preclinical through commercial production. This comprehensive portfolio includes cell lines, cell culture media, processing chemicals and buffers, enzymes, as well as systems, filters, hardware and consumables to support every step of the viral vector manufacturing processes. Merck’s expertise and portfolio covers a variety of viral vector types, including adeno-associated virus, lentivirus, and adenovirus. Additionally, Merck’s Life Science Services business offers both contract testing services and a suite of comprehensive CDMO services for viral vector manufacturing, leveraging three decades of experience supporting cell and gene therapies to de-risk the path to commercialization.

This deal is anticipated to close in Q3 of 2024 and is subject to regulatory clearance and other customary closing conditions.

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About Merck
Merck, a leading science and technology company, operates across life science, healthcare and electronics. Around 63,000 employees work to make a positive difference to millions of people’s lives every day by creating more joyful and sustainable ways to live. From providing products and services that accelerate drug development and manufacturing as well as discovering unique ways to treat the most challenging diseases to enabling the intelligence of devices – the company is everywhere. In 2023, Merck generated sales of € 21 billion in 65 countries.

Scientific exploration and responsible entrepreneurship have been key to Merck’s technological and scientific advances. This is how Merck has thrived since its founding in 1668. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed company. Merck holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the business sectors of Merck operate as MilliporeSigma in life science, EMD Serono in healthcare, and EMD Electronics in electronics.

1https://www.fda.gov/vaccines-blood-biologics/cellular-gene-therapy-products/approved-cellular-and-gene-therapy-products

2 EvaluatePharma 2023

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rachel.bloom-baglin@merckgroup.com
Phone: +1 978 436 1725

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