The Carlyle Group is in exclusive talks to buy clinical research company Pharmaceutical Product Development (PPD) according to Bloomberg.

Individuals involved with the bid confirmed that the bid was taking place and that most were between $33 and $38 a share, or as much as $4.3bn.

PPD’s shares jumped $4.91 (18%) to $31.51 with the NASDAQ Stock Market valuing the company at about $3.6bn.

The acquisition would be the largest for Carlyle since announcing the $3.9bn purchase of telecommunications-equipment manufacturer CommScope in October.

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