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After months of urging from Wall Street, Gilead Sciences (GILD) finally made a big acquisition — paying nearly $12 billion in cash to buy Kite Pharmaceuticals (KITE), a leader in developing so-called CAR-T therapies that leverage the body’s own immune system to fight cancer.

For Gilead, the move is a way to quickly diversify beyond its infectious-disease franchise. Although its HIV portfolio remains dominant, declining sales of its hepatitis C drugs have hurt its stock price. Moreover, this may finally help Gilead dive into the lucrative cancer market, where the company has suffered several notable setbacks.

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