US Pharm. 2014;39(8):53.

North Chicago, IL—The pharmaceutical company AbbVie has agreed to purchase its rival Shire for approximately $54 billion, creating one of the 50 largest companies in the world. The acquisition will allow AbbVie to reincorporate in Great Britain and reduce its overall tax burden, a controversial financial move known as an inversion. AbbVie, a recent spin-off of Abbott Laboratories, currently manufactures the top-selling arthritis drug adalimumab (Humira), the patent for which expires in 2016. By acquiring Shire, the company gains a diverse portfolio of biopharmaceuticals, including the popular attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) drug Adderall (dextroamphetamine/amphetamine).

To comment on this article, contact