News

India reins in agency's ability to cap drug prices

Price caps on "essential drugs" in India have been a sore point with domestic as well as Big Pharma players. The industry was further enraged when an Indian agency in May assumed the authority to add other products to the 350 already restricted. But the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is reining in the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), suggesting he may have a less populous approach to the industry than his predecessor.

Tax-deal crackdown's victims, say analysts? Mylan and Abbott, not Pfizer and AZ

Pfizer and AstraZeneca, AbbVie and Shire, Hospira and Danone. Those are a few of the merger pairs--actual or potential--that stand to lose from U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew's new tax-inversion-fighting rules. Just take a look at AstraZeneca and Shire's market value today: together down $8 billion.

Heads will roll at GlaxoSmithKline, investors say. The question is, whose?

China corruption settlement, check. Now GlaxoSmithKline CEO Andrew Witty needs to come to terms with investors. With quarterly sales off and new drugs lagging, shareholders are demanding change at the top--and this time, some are willing to go on the record.

Allergan rebuffed Actavis bid, saying it's 'closing in' on a $10B-plus Salix buy

Allergan might have had a reason to play nice with Valeant Pharmaceuticals. When the two companies agreed to set a special shareholder meeting about Valeant's hostile bid, Allergan was busy with two other potential deals.

Faltering Boehringer slashes 600 jobs in Germany in bid to save $580M

The bloodletting in Big Pharma continues with news today that Boehringer Ingelheim is planning between 500 and 600 job cuts in its home country of Germany. The cuts come just a few weeks after the company announced its sales had dropped 3% in the first 6 months of the year and full-year results would likely be down slightly from last year.

Amgen goes to FDA early with new leukemia drug

Amgen is hoping to redeem its drug development rep by going to the FDA with an application for its new leukemia drug blinatumomab based on promising Phase II data, FierceBiotech reports.

Par settles patent suit and will pay Salix and MU $100M in fight over Zegerid copy

Generic drugmaker Par Pharmaceutical is throwing in the towel in its long-running fight with Santarus ($SNTS) over its heartburn med Zegerid, and $100 million along with it. It reported today that the payment will settle their back-and-forth patent suit.

 

AstraZeneca builds up in-house IT operations with 300 in India

AstraZeneca's cost-cutting announcement actually had a hiring aspect to it. It is building a global network of IT centers that will replace the technology outsourcing it has been doing for more than a dozen years.

Auxilium says Endo offer not enough to break off with QLT

And so the M&A dance begins. Auxilium Pharmaceuticals today turned its back on a $2.2 billion buyout offer it received last week from Endo Pharmaceutical and said it would stick instead with its plan to merge with Canadian eye-drug maker QLT.

Merck KGaA declares $17B Sigma purchase 'quantum leap' as drug biz struggles

Speculation has been brewing all year about the prospect of Germany's Merck KGaA turning to M&A to bolster its unproductive drug pipeline, and today the company confirmed it has struck a deal, agreeing to buy Sigma-Aldrich for $17 billion.

Eylea gets yet another approval, this one in Japan

The approvals, and the sales, just keep piling up for Eylea, the blockbuster that Bayer shares with developer Regeneron. Just weeks after getting an important nod in Europe, it has won approval in Japan, the world's third largest market, for use in myopic choroidal neovascularization.

Analysts: Bayer could use plastics proceeds to fund a deal for Zoetis

Now that Bayer has announced a planned spinoff of its plastics business, all eyes are on what it may do with the proceeds. And the way some analysts see it, that money could go toward a pickup of animal health company Zoetis.

Novo finds new way to sell Tresiba in EU while awaiting another shot in U.S.

Novo Nordisk is hustling to get work done so that it can resubmit its blockbuster hopeful Tresiba to the FDA next year with an eye on getting into the market by 2016, three years after the FDA squelched its plans with its initial denial. In the meantime, Novo is finding new ways to combo Tresiba up and sell it in Europe where it is approved.

President and advisory panel zero in on combating antibiotic resistance

President Obama is cracking down on so-called superbugs, those that cause deadly antibiotic-resistant infections, with an executive order that will establish a task force to combat the problem.

Inversion pushback won't scare Horizon Pharma out of Ireland move

Who's afraid of a tax-inversion crackdown? Not Illinois-based Horizon Pharma, which plans to move its corporate address to Ireland today.

UPDATED: Europe approves Gilead's cancer drug Zydelig amid challenging pricing environment

The approval puts Gilead well on track to meet analyst expectations that Zydelig (idelalisib) will be hauling in $1.2 billion in annual sales by 2020, though there's little doubt Gilead will face pressure from European health agencies to keep a lid on the new drug's price.

GSK China scandal resolved with $500M fine and suspended jail sentence

Chinese justice came swift and in secret for GlaxoSmithKline today. A top executive narrowly escaped prison, and the company was convicted and will pay a fine of nearly $500 million for bribery in a country known for its corruption.

FDA backs ED upstart Stendra as a fast-acting alternative to Viagra

Companies have been studying Stendra for some sort of competitive edge. Now, they may have found one: The FDA backed the ED pill as a fast-acting treatment, taken 15 minutes before sex. Previously, the directions prescribed a 30-minute lead time.

Glaxo Ebola vax shows no adverse effects so far in first human trial

With the Ebola death toll mounting in West Africa, a Phase I trial of GlaxoSmithKline's experimental vaccine for the disease is underway at the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

Real-world hep C patients drop off pricey Sovaldi, CVS study finds

CVS Health has some hard data on Sovaldi's excursion from the Gilead Sciences clinic and into the world. It's not encouraging: More than four times as many real-world patients are dropping off the pricey hepatitis C treatment than in clinical trials.