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Schering-Plough to Buy More ICN Stock as Part of Accord

April 08, 1999|From Bloomberg News

ICN Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Wednesday that Schering-Plough Corp. will buy $27 million worth of ICN stock as part of an agreement on Rebetron, a hepatitis C treatment that combines an ICN drug with Schering-Plough's Intron A.

Schering-Plough, which makes the world's best-selling allergy drug, Claritin, bought 1.1 million shares from Costa Mesa-based ICN on Feb. 23. It will buy another $15 million in ICN stock if Rebetron is approved by European regulators, ICN said.

Under the terms of a July 1995 agreement, Madison, N.J.-based Schering-Plough agreed to buy set amounts of ICN stock as milestones with Rebetron were achieved. The combination of the ICN drug and Intron A won U.S. approval last year.

About 4 million people in the U.S. have chronic hepatitis C.

Schering-Plough sells Intron A, which is used to treat cancer as well as hepatitis, under an agreement with biotechnology company Biogen Inc. of Cambridge, Mass.

Schering shares rose 25 cents Wednesday to close at $56.88 on the New York Stock Exchange. ICN shares rose 81 cents to close at $25.75, also on the NYSE.

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