News

China sets trial date for GSK-tied investigators, says it will be 'open'

China will try two private investigators tied to GlaxoSmithKline's operations there in just over a week on charges of illegally purchasing personal information about Chinese nationals, a Chinese court said. And according to state news agency Xinhua, all are welcome to attend.

J&J, Pharmacyclics celebrate yet another nod for leukemia med Imbruvica

Johnson & Johnson's new blood cancer drug Imbruvica (ibrutinib) is on a roll. The FDA just armed the drug with a new indication in chronic lymphocytic leukemia, adding to a series of regulatory nods.

Don't get too excited, investors: GSK has no near-term plans for consumer health spinoff

Let GlaxoSmithKline be clear: It's open to spinning off its consumer healthcare division at some nebulous point in the future. But it's not happening anytime soon.

Beyond the Q2 numbers, three big questions for Pfizer

Pfizer beat analyst expectations for earnings. That's not as positive as it sounds, and it's certainly not the whole story.

Merck beats Q2 earnings estimates, but mostly on cost-cutting

Merck surprised Wall Street analysts today when it announced that its net profit in the second quarter jumped to $2 billion from $906 million in the same period a year ago, and that it was raising the lower end of its income forecast for 2014. But it's not exactly time to pop out the champagne corks and declare a successful turnaround.

AstraZeneca rolls out preemie newspaper ads to fight Synagis limits

Drugmakers cheer when influential doctors' groups revise treatment guidelines to include new drugs. But as AstraZeneca's MedImmune unit knows, those groups can backpedal. 

Merck spokeswoman: Sales layoffs to hit PA-based field reps

The job-cutting ax has come out for Merck's U.S. field force, as part of a move to cut 600 positions by August. 

Merck KGaA chief: We'll pump up consumer health to double China sales

The chilly sales climate in China is just now warming up after last summer's wave of bribery accusations spooked doctors and sales reps. But as far as Merck KGaA is concerned, China is warm enough to deliver doubled revenues in the region. And that's exactly what the German drugmaker's shooting for.

Sources: Hospira in talks to pick up Danone nutrition biz and a tax cut

The string of pharma M&A deals fueled by the lure of cutting taxes continues and Midwest-based Hospira is now said to be about to take the plunge. Its vehicle of choice is the medical nutrition business of France's Danone, which sources say it is negotiating to buy in a deal that could run to $5 billion.

Reckitt Benckiser says it's a go for pharma unit spinoff worth some $4.9B

Reckitt Benckiser has been dropping plenty of hints that it would eventually spin off its pharmaceuticals unit. The time is here: The company says it will break off its pharma unit via with a separate U.K. listing, becoming the latest drugmaker to join pharma's slim-down craze.

Roche, Novartis protest moves in EU to pay for off-label Avastin

Last week, France made its move to knock the Novartis eye drug Lucentis out of drug coverage and move its cheaper cousin Avastin into its place. Now, Novartis and its Lucentis partner Roche are fighting back.

GlaxoSmithKline CEO: Open to spinning off consumer health biz

GlaxoSmithKline pulled off a $20 billion asset swap with Novartis in April, hiving off its oncology business and building up in consumer health and vaccines in one fell swoop. But that restructuring might not be enough, CEO Andrew Witty tells the Financial Times. A future spin-off may be in order.

Merck whacks 600 sales reps as part of 8,500 bloodletting

Merck is going through a complete makeover, buying and selling units at a rapid pace. And some of its employees are getting caught in its "out with the old and in with the new" philosophy. Now 600 sales reps have been told their services are no longer needed

As legislator rails on potential Valeant-Allergan deal, Wall Street lines up to fund it

It remains to be seen whether unconventional M&A tactics from Valeant's takeover partner, Bill Ackman, will help the pair get a deal for Allergan done. But in the meanwhile, one lawmaker is putting heat on the SEC to consider revising the rules that allowed them.

Bayer's Nexavar misses another study endpoint, this time for breast cancer

Nexavar, the blockbuster cancer drug sold by Bayer and Onyx Pharmaceuticals, has failed again in a trial for a new indication. 

J&J builds 9-month supply of Doxil with creative problem solving

A Johnson & Johnson exercise in creative problem solving has paid off for doctors and patients who rely on its ovarian cancer drug Doxil, availability of which has been uncertain for years. Its Janssen unit has accumulated a significant supply after assuming manufacturing at Boehringer Ingelheim plant that otherwise was closed down at the end of the year.

Gilead's Zydelig, J&J's Imbruvica will go toe-to-toe in EU with nod for CLL

Gilead Sciences, which this week got FDA approval for its new blood cancer drug Zydelig (idelalisib), has now gotten a recommendation for its use in Europe. But competitor Imbruvica from Johnson & Johnson, which got a head start in the U.S., also received a nod from EU authorities today.

With Shire deal in the bag, Humira leap helps AbbVie hold its own

AbbVie may have just struck a deal with Shire in order to diversify beyond its top drug, Humira. But that doesn't mean the drug isn't steamrolling.

Still reeling from China bribery probe, GSK faces corruption scandal in Syria

The British company said Thursday that it had received an email containing allegations from a whistleblower pertaining to bribes paid by GSK's consumer healthcare operation in Syria before it was shut down amidst the country's civil war in 2012.

Bristol-Myers beats profit estimates, thanks to strong Yervoy, Eliquis numbers

Bristol-Myers Squibb's melanoma drug Yervoy and clot-fighter Eliquis helped boost its earnings past analyst forecasts, with $333 million in profits on $3.9 billion in revenue.