News

Which pharma needs its cash cow most? It's not just about numbers

Ten companies count on one top product to supply a major chunk of their sales, the business news site Quartz calculates. And several of those are either anticipating some serious pain from a near-term patent expiration or already suffering from competition.

Merck's Rebif held its own in last year's MS market shakeup. What about 2015?

With oral rivals lurking for Rebif, the leading drug from Merck KGaA, the good news for the German pharma is that the news isn't that bad.

Valeant welcomes Dendreon into the fold with a 77-job shearing

It's no secret that when serial acquirer and cost-cutting enthusiast Valeant takes over a company, layoffs are on the way. And for Dendreon, the bankrupt Seattle biotech whose assets the Canadian snatched up last month, they've already begun.

Gilead's hep C combo Harvoni wins NICE blessing at $58K price

The U.K.'s cost-effectiveness watchdogs gave a thumbs up to Gilead Sciences' combo hepatitis C pill Harvoni, despite its £39,000 price, or about $58,000. The pill combines Gilead's new blockbuster hep C drug Sovaldi with another antiviral, ledipasvir, and has delivered impressive cure rates.

Novartis CEO: We can rebuild our good name after 'reputational hit' in Japan

What's going to save Novartis' reputation in Japan? Science, says CEO Joe Jimenez, a week after the government suspended his Japanese unit for failure to report side effects.

Genentech's cancer drug supply switch costs more, delays treatment, survey finds

Top hospitals are still irate about Genentech's decision to move its best-selling cancer drugs to specialty distributors. And they're not giving up on persuading the company to change back.

To avoid becoming deal bait, Mylan CEO may have to make another big buy

It's been less than a week since Mylan completed its deal with Abbott, scooping up a large chunk of the Illinois company's overseas generics business. But CEO Heather Bresch is already hinting at another big transaction.

Was Onyx worth it? Amgen's case is looking up as Kyprolis bests Velcade in head-to-head trial

Interim results are in from Amgen's head-to-head trial between its blood cancer drug Kyprolis and Takeda's Velcade, and things are looking good for the California biotech. Twice as good as they are for Takeda, in fact, when it comes to progression-free survival.

Medicare urged to crack down on antipsychotic scripts for dementia sufferers

The Obama administration is already working with nursing homes to reduce inappropriate use of antipsychotic meds such as Seroquel, Risperdal and Zyprexa. But federal investigators now say officials need to focus on overuse in dementia patients.

AstraZeneca director pushing to tie exec pay to big growth promises

The promises are coming home to roost for AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot. Or so reports The Sunday Times, which says the U.K.-based company is once again under pressure to put Soriot's bonus pay on the line for the big goals he touted in defending against Pfizer's $100 billion takeover bid last year.

Teva deal with G&W saves plant and 280 jobs in Pennsylvania

A Teva plant in Pennsylvania and hundreds of jobs have been spared the ax that the Israeli company has been swinging left and right as it cuts costs in the face of patent cliff issues. Instead, a family-owned business from New Jersey will acquire the Sellersville facility along with about two dozen drugs that are manufactured there.

Post-Novartis deal, GSK's top dog in vaccines, consumer health. Now what?

GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis have finally closed the multibillion-dollar asset swap that's sending GSK's oncology portfolio to Switzerland in exchange for most of the latter's vaccines unit. Now, all eyes will be on the British pharma giant, who industry watchers agree has more to prove after exiting the fast-growing cancer field.

GSK deal's done. Now, Novartis has to deliver on cancer-growth pledge

Novartis has been rubbing its hands together in anticipation of taking over GlaxoSmithKline's cancer portfolio. Now it can. The two drug giants wrapped up their big sale-and-swap, putting Novartis in charge of GSK oncology meds, from Arzerra to Votrient.

Pfizer, Novartis: CDC's MenB nod is too narrow

Pfizer and Novartis have snagged a nod from the CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices for their recently approved meningitis B vaccines. There's just one problem: It doesn't cover nearly as large a population as the pharma giants would like.

Bayer nabs new Eylea nod to help it toward 2015 sales target

Bayer said earlier this week that it would be counting on eye blockbuster Eylea to provide some serious sales growth in 2015, and now, it has a new indication the company hopes can help it get there.

Sanofi's Toujeo gets the love from EU regulators that FDA withheld

Not only did Sanofi snag an EU recommendation for its Lantus follow-up drug Toujeo just two days after the FDA approved it, but regulators in Europe also gave the drug a bit of a kiss that the FDA did not. They noted that it is better at preventing low blood sugars.

Gilead looks overseas to guard Sovaldi profits from taxes

Tax inversion deals are not the only trick Big Pharma has up its sleeve to avoid steep U.S. taxes. Gilead Sciences is booking profits overseas in low-tax countries to take home more profits for its blockbuster hep C drug Sovaldi.

GSK CEO Witty's pay whacked as U.K.'s largest drugmaker struggles to right itself

2014 was a tough year for GlaxoSmithKline. Its revenues and profits were off significantly. Its operating profit was off nearly 50% in pounds--and, as it turns out, so was CEO Andrew Witty's pay. In fact he took a 46% whack to his compensation.

Bayer counts on consumer health, pharma growth to power 2015

Bayer's new pharma launches may be soaring, but that wasn't enough to help the German drugmaker meet analysts' profit estimates for Q4. For 2015, the company expects bigger things--but as it moves forward with plans to bid farewell to its plastics unit and competition ramps up for its best-sellers, its consumer health division will need to start pulling its weight.

GlaxoSmithKline's new chairman will climb aboard months earlier than expected

GlaxoSmithKline says Sir Philip Hampton is free to take the reins in May.