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Salix to Buy Santarus for $2.6 Billion for Diabetes Drug

Salix Pharmaceuticals Ltd., a maker of drugs for gastrointestinal diseases, said it will acquire Santarus Inc. for about $2.6 billion to gain treatments for diabetes and heartburn.

Salix, based in Raleigh, North Carolina, will pay $32 a share in cash for San Diego-based Santarus, a 39 percent premium to Santarus’s average closing price in the last 30 trading days, the companies said in a statement yesterday.