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Biotech shares soar on dealmaking, drug breakthroughs; AveXis jumps 81 percent

  • AveXis shares led the biotech sector higher on Monday after Novartis announced its deal to buy the gene therapy company.
  • The iShares Nasdaq Biotech ETF rose 1.8 percent Monday, following its 5 percent decline this month through Friday.
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The biotech sector bounced back big time Monday due to a big acquisition and positive drug developments.

The iShares Nasdaq Biotech ETF rose 1.8 percent Monday, following its 5 percent decline this month through Friday.

AveXis shares led the sector by rising 81.6 percent. Novartis said on Monday it plans to buy the gene therapy company in a cash deal totaling $8.7 billion or $218 per share.

Gene therapy companies such as REGENXBIO and Abeona Therapeutics rallied more than 15 percent in reaction to the deal.

Several biotech companies also rose on positive drug pipeline developments.

Verastem stock gained 10.8 percent after it announced on Monday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration accepted its New Drug Application filing with priority review for its duvelisib, a treatment for lymphoma.

And microcap Therapix Biosciences stock popped 15.6 percent. The company announced its results from a Phase IIa study for its treatment for Tourette Syndrome.