Adding shots on goal

A long-standing critique of German biotech companies is that they are too small and rely too much on a single lead program. Two companies last week took steps to change that equation. 4SC AG for the first time has in-licensed programs from another company, while Sygnis Pharma AG has decided it needs to have its own discovery engine to ensure a constant source of clinical candidates.

4SC acquired eight oncology programs from Nycomed Group A/S for E14 million ($21.7 million) in cash, while Sygnis was expected to announce this week that it is acquiring Amnestix Inc., a privately held U.S. neurogenomics company focusing on diseases associated with memory loss, for E4 million ($6.2 million) in cash and stock.

For 4SC, its decision to in-license compounds from an external source for the

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