Roche has agreed to purchase US-based Anadys Pharmaceuticals, a specialist in hepatitis C treatments, for around $230m in cash.

Roche’s attraction to Anadys is focused on the company’s ANA598 compound, currently being evaluated in combination with Roche’s Pegasys and Copegus treatments for hepatitis C.

The Switzerland-based pharmaceutical firm is paying $3.70 a share, a 256% premium over the $1.04 closing price of Anadys on Friday October 14. The company’s board has advised other stockholders to follow the board’s lead and tender their shares.

Roche pharma research and early development head Jean-Jacques Garaud said: "Our aim is to offer physicians and hepatitis patients a powerful combination of therapies that bring us closer to a cure."