Grupo Ferrer to acquire Alexza Pharmaceuticals

Adds the Staccato system for treating central nervous system conditions and antipsychotic product Adasuve to portfolio

Spanish pharmaceutical firm Grupo Ferrer Internacional is to acquire Alexza Pharmaceuticals for $0.90 per share in cash.

The addition of Mountain View, CA, US-based Alexza brings products such as the Staccato system for treating conditions of the central nervous system and Adasuve, an antipsychotic product, to Ferrer's portfolio.

Staccato is a hand-held inhaler that delivers a pure drug aerosol to the deep lung, providing rapid systemic delivery in a simple, non-invasive manner.

The system include a heat package with a stainless steel substrate, onto which a film of unformulated drug is coated. When the patient draws a normal breath through the Staccato system, the substrate surface instantaneously heats to create a condensation aerosol.

We firmly believe that the Staccato technology will change the lives of patients with severe mental and neurological disorders

Alexza is also developing Staccato products for the management of epilepsy in patients (Staccato alprazolam) with acute repetitive seizures and for the treatment of patients with middle of the night insomnia (Staccato Zaleplon).

'We firmly believe that the Staccato technology will change the lives of patients with severe mental and neurological disorders. At the same time it will help healthcare professionals to improve their management in the increasingly digitalised and personalised healthcare context,' said Jordi Ramentol, CEO of Ferrer.

Thomas King, President and CEO of Alexza, added: 'We see Ferrer as the ideal company to acquire Alexza as we continue to strive toward global commercial success with Adasuve and to re-energise our Staccato-based product pipeline.

'Over the past four years, we have come to appreciate their professionalism, passion, dedication and commitment to Alexza's technologies, products and people.'

The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2016 and is subject to customary closing conditions.

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