Merz gains Radiesse wrinkle filler
German drug company's $253 mil. acquisition of California-based BioForm Medical, announced Jan. 4, provides it with latter's FDA-approved Radiesse wrinkle filler, rounding out its aesthetic product offering and accentuating its presence in the U.S. Merz's pre-acquisition aesthetic portfolio included dermal fillers Belotero (hyaluronic acid) and Novabel (alginate), both available in Europe and undergoing trials to support U.S. approval. Sales of Mederma anti-scarring creams have helped support the firm's U.S. business (1"The Rose Sheet" July 20, 2009). Made of smooth calcium hydroxylapatite microspheres suspended in a gel and designed to stimulate production of new collagen as a patient's own soft tissue replaces the gel carrier, Radiesse competes against Allergan's Juvederm, Medicis' Restylane and Johnson & Johnson's Evolence, among others. BioForm booked sales of about $66.5 mil. in fiscal 2009. Following completion of the acquisition, which Merz expects in March, the firm will relocate its U.S. aesthetics business to BioForm's San Mateo, Calif., headquarters and the combined operation will be renamed Merz Aesthetics
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