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Shares of NPS Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: NPSP) surged more than 8.5% in pre-market hours on news that the company will be purchased by Ireland's Shire Plc. (Nasdaq ADR: SHPG) for $5.2 billion, or $46 per share. The deal will unite two international firms dedicated to the growing business of developing orphan drugs for rare diseases. This is Shire's first major deal after AbbVie Inc. (Nasdaq: ABBV) attempted to purchase the company last year. The deal fell apart in October.