The Financial Times on
Wednesday reported that Johnson & Johnson is close to buying cancer drug
maker Pharmacyclics Inc in the coming days.
A bid from J&J is expected to value Pharmacyclics near
its $17.5 billion market value or at a premium, FT said. Shares of
Pharmacyclics, which markets blood cancer drug Imbruvica with J&J's Janssen
unit, increased about 3 percent in extended trading.
Pharmacyclics has earlier said that sales of Imbruvica,
which has U.S. approvals for four forms of blood cancer, are expected to touch
$1 billion in the United States this year.
Bloomberg reported last month that Pharmacyclics was mulling
a sale and had attracted the interest of J&J and Novartis AG. Any interest from J&J would be logical, considering its
already established relationship with Pharmacyclics, experts in the industry