Novartis jumps on FDA approval of gene therapy

Friday, 24. May 2019 19:18

Shares of Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis International AG surged on Friday after the United States Food and Drug Administration approved its $2.3 million gene therapy for spinal muscular atrophy.

The treatment named Zolgensma is designed to address the genetic root cause of SMA, a rare neuromuscular disorder which leads to muscle wasting.

"Zolgensma is a historic advance for the treatment of SMA and a landmark one-time gene therapy. Our goal is to ensure broad patient access to this transformational medicine and to share value with the healthcare system," Novartis CEO Vas Narasimhan said in a statement.

Novartis jumped 4.29% to $88.06 per share at 11:11 am ET following the news.

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