Eli Lilly Acquires Alnara

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- The drugmaker Eli Lilly and Co. said Friday it acquired Alnara Pharmaceuticals Inc., a privately held biotechnology drug developer with an enzyme replacement therapy under review by the Food and Drug Administration.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The Indianapolis drugmaker said Alnara, which is based in Cambridge, Mass., has no drugs on the market. But its lead candidate, liprotamase, has gone through clinical testing and is under regulatory review for possible approval.

Liprotamase treats exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, which leaves patients unable to digest and absorb fat, protein and carbohydrates. The condition can be caused by cystic fibrosis or chronic pancreatitis, among other reasons.

Lilly said the deal gives it a "promising entry into enzyme replacement therapy," an area the drugmaker does not currently cover. Lilly's biggest treatment areas include neuroscience, oncology and diabetes.

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