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Bayer Adds Asklepios BioPharmaceutical (AskBio) in an Effort to Scale Its Gene Therapy Unit

Bayer is an age old pharmaceutical firm that’s making investments to step into the emerging industry of gene therapy. The German firm is moving forward with a gene therapy platform to gain an edge in the markets and increase innovation in the pharmaceutical industry.

The firm notes that it will implement the C&GT or the Cell and Gene Therapy Platform  to focus on modern groundbreaking treatments for patients suffering from various conditions. The new or scaled up segment will work across each aspect of the value chain.

Its current platform already has five assets in this segment and reports that it is making further progress with preclinical candidates.

Bayer and The Asklepios BioPharmaceutical (AskBio) Purchase

Bayer acquired Asklepios BioPharmaceutical (AskBio), a North Carolina based firm for up to $4 billion. The German pharma giant paid $2 billion for the initial purchase of the adeno associated virus gene therapy company. AskBio was founded in 2001 and has been creating a pipeline of therapies for rare diseases that range from Pompe disease to various other ones.

AskBio has the potential to earn more upon the completion of contingent goals set by Bayer and Askbio. The firm’s research, team, and manufacturing process are what provides it with value. Specifically, its Pro10 AAV manufacturing process is normalized across the industry.

The firm is even more compelling because it’s grown its platform to work with other larger players that range from Pfizer to Takeda and others. Further, it holds over 300 patents in segments that range from AAV to “production intra-molecular double-stranded DNA template.”

In addition it has seen more regulatory progress over the years, significant value add for pharmaceutical companies. Meanwhile, it continues to invest in research on rare diseases and  other challenging ones that range from Parkinson’s to CHF.

Bayer Gains Value In Several Ways

Bayer will obtain all rights to AskBio’s overall pipeline for a wide variety of diseases from Pompe to the central nervous system and heart diseases. AskBio will stay independent under the Bayer structure.

AskBio will operate at a distance, enabling it to move forward without the excessive red tape that may come with a merger. An AskBio representative notes “our innovation in capsid re-engineering and promoter design, coupled with our scaled manufacturing processes, gives us the tools to provide gene therapy solutions to more people suffering from a wider spectrum of disease that is not being adequately treated today.”

This purchase will provide a robust structure for Bayer’s cell and gene therapy ambitions.It will enable the firm to have access and exposure to the right fundamentals for long-term cell and gene therapy partnerships. Its’ gene therapy platform and manufacturing aspect will add more value to the Bayer cell and gene therapy division.

Why Cell and Gene Therapy Is Interesting

Cell and gene therapy in general presents a new emerging frontier that can elevate human life, increase quality of life and bring about significant potential in overall health.


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