News

AstraZeneca, betting on biologics, will build a $285M facility in Sweden

AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot is counting on the company's cancer drug pipeline to help it climb out of the revenue hole it has fallen into, and he figures his company needs more manufacturing capacity for the coming launches.

Endo scoops up Par Pharma for $8B to gain ground in injectables

After Endo lost Salix earlier this year, analysts didn't think there would be much left for the drugmaker in terms of M&A. But now, the company is snatching up generics maker Par Pharmaceutical for $8 billion, getting its hands on the company's generic drug portfolio to expand its offerings and generate long-term growth.

Actavis talks to DOJ about resolving probe of Warner Chilcott marketing misdeeds

Actavis is trying to rid itself of some nasty legal entanglements that it picked up in its $8.5 billion deal for Ireland's Warner Chilcott, meeting with the Justice Department looking for a way to put to rest an investigation into allegations Warner Chilcott essentially bribed doctors into prescribing some of its meds.

AbbVie nabs FDA's orphan drug tag for Humira in HS

AbbVie is working to lessen its reliance on blockbuster Humira, which is already facing biosimilar competition in India. But it's also working to broaden the drug's label, and on that front, it got a boost from the FDA on Friday.

Eisai predicts long-awaited operating profit rise for fiscal 2015

It's been a hard fall off the patent cliff for Eisai, but after 5 long years, the company says it sees its operating profit climbing in its next fiscal year.

New CEO Weber deals with Takeda's loss and promises brighter future

In his debut earnings report since assuming his role as CEO of Japanese drugmaker Takeda, Christophe Weber had to tell investors today that the company had a small loss in its last fiscal year.

Merck scores victory in India patent battle over top diabetes meds

Merck scored a victory in its patent battle with India's Glenmark Pharmaceuticals over copycats of the drugmaker's diabetes meds Januvia and Janumet, as India's highest court blocked the generics company from marketing its cheap versions of the drugs in the country.

Early ASCO winners? Roche and Pfizer, and to a lesser extent, BMS

The curtain is up on the first act of the annual cancer drug lollapalooza at ASCO. The first round of abstracts spotlights a series of early winners--including Roche--and at least one big loser: Puma Biotechnology.

Mylan shareholders face big M&A-related taxes, especially if Teva's bid succeeds

Last year, Mylan forked over millions to cover its top execs' tax liability on its deal with Abbott Laboratories, which shifted its tax domicile to Europe. Investors weren't so lucky--and now, they may take another tax hit if Mylan joins up with suitor Teva.

Here's a lucrative idea: Turn a drug into an orphan med, reap 6 months extra exclusivity

Would-be makers of rare disease meds, rejoice: A 6-month exclusivity extension, proposed last year in Congress, has returned. The 21st Century Cures Act, now under consideration in the House of Representatives, once again includes a measure that would prolong competition-free marketing for some meds repurposed to treat rare diseases.

UPDATED: Pfizer gets friendly backing in appeal over blind rep's bid for paid driver

In the department of employee lawsuits, Pfizer is the latest drugmaker in the hot seat. But the seat is hotter for the visually impaired sales rep who sued because the company wouldn't provide a driver to ferry her to doctors' offices.

Takeda puts screws on Orexigen for $200M do-over after 'compromised' heart trial

Turns out the FDA isn't the only one that's been ticked off with Orexigen since it released some early positive cardio data for obesity drug, Contrave, last March. Marketing partner Takeda is on that list, too--and earlier this week, the Japanese drugmaker went so far as to threaten to nix the pair's pact.

Big Pharma's a C student, rep study finds, with Bayer at the top, Novartis at bottom

When it comes to Big Pharma's reputation, "average" says it all. That's the story from the research firm Reputation Institute, which perennially puts major drugmakers right smack in the middle of its scorecard. In other words, pharma is a C student.

Contrave controversy puts Orexigen, Takeda in unwelcome spotlight

The FDA was none too happy with Orexigen when it put out some early positive cardio data for obesity drug Contrave in March. One reason? Early data can be misleading--and now, it looks like that might have been the case for Contrave.

Vertex eyes big revenue boost with FDA panel backing for Orkambi

Vertex Pharmaceuticals wants to expand its cystic fibrosis market tenfold, and on Tuesday, it got one step closer. An FDA advisory committee voted 12 to 1 in favor of a new combo drug Orkambi, which marries current CF star Kalydeco with an experimental med, lumacaftor.

Which global markets should drugmakers target? China, yes--but old European standbys, too

Big Pharma has some serious ground to cover when it comes to global sales and marketing. Worldwide spending for prescription branded drugs and generic medicines is set to increase 30% from 2013-2018, a yearly growth rate of more than 5%, with $1.3 trillion in annual global drug sales on the line, according to data from the Institute of Healthcare Informatics cited by The Motley Fool blog. And drugmakers should look past traditional markets for their cut of the profits.

 

Ranks of 'super-spender' patients triple, pushing drug bills up $52B

A small but growing number of patients is racking up big drug bills in the U.S. On a per-patient basis, it's staggering: Some 576,000 Americans generated more than $50,000 in prescription drug costs each last year, according to a report from Express Scripts. And nearly 140,000 of them totted up drug bills of $100,000 or more.

Senator asks VA to yank patent on Gilead's Sovaldi to crush its price

Gilead Sciences has been able to withstand scathing criticism at home over the prices of its hep C cures, negotiate with stingy price watchdogs abroad and face down criticism in developing countries by giving generics producers access to formulations and technology. But can it stand up to a possible attack by the U.S. military?

Baxter pads biopharma unit with pre-spinoff oncology buy

As Baxter gears up to spin off its biopharma unit into new company Baxalta, it wants to make sure the new pharma has enough revenue to rely on. And to do that, it's bulking up.

Endo plots a double-sized salesforce, new DTC push for Stendra relaunch

Not satisfied with the way its new purchase Auxilium had handled Stendra marketing, Endo plans to relaunch the erectile dysfunction med, which it sells in partnership with Vivus. Endo is doubling the size of the Stendra salesforce, rolling out a new DTC effort, and keeping a close eye on inventory levels, which had built up too much for its taste.