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Cangene to sell its 3 U.S. plasma centres

Workers at a Cangene facility.

Cangene

Cangene Corp. has agreed to sell its three U.S. plasma centres to Biomat USA Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Grifols.

The Winnipeg-based biotechnology company said it will retain its plasma centre in Winnipeg and buy additional supplies from Grifols and on the open market.

Financial terms weren't disclosed but Cangene said it will use proceeds to fund research and development.

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"The sale of our U.S. plasma centres is consistent with our refocused specialty biopharmaceutical strategy," Cengen president and CEO John Sedor said in a statement Monday.

"We believe that Cangene is now in a position of strength in the specialty biopharmaceutical space to expand the depth of its pipeline."

Cangene recently announced plans to cancel its program for IGIV — an intravenous anti-infection treatment — and said it would refocus its corporate strategy and R&D pipeline.

The company has been working to overcome what had been a shrinking demand for drugs stockpiled to combat possible biological warfare or terrorism.

In January it laid off 120 staff members, or about 17 per cent of its workforce.

It announced last month that has received an extension of an existing contract and the signing of a new contract related to U.S. government biodefence programs.

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