News

Amid new drug negotiations, China puts price-management vet in charge of CFDA

SINGAPORE--A change in leadership at the China Drug and Food Administration was announced on the Communist Party website last week: Bi Jingquan, who has more than 20 years of experience in pricing and management, will take over from Zhang Yong as CFDA minister.

Ranbaxy-Sun U.S. approval hinges on selling antibacterial drug as FTC notes reach of Indian generic giant

Ranbaxy Laboratories may soon be selling its generic minocycline antibacterial drug to Torrent Pharmaceuticals as a condition for U.S. approval for its merger with Sun Pharmaceuticals.

Valeant forays into oncology with stalking-horse bid for Dendreon's Provenge

Valeant has finally made a significant M&A move after its failed pursuit of Allergan, and bankrupt Dendreon has finally found a way to unload cancer vaccine Provenge. And they're one and the same.

AbbVie rides high on Humira sales in Q4 but looks to new products for success in 2015

AbbVie posted promising fourth-quarter earnings fueled by the strong performance of blockbuster Humira. But the company is looking beyond its top-selling med in 2015, focusing on the development of new products to bolster its bottom line as it counters generic competition to some of its key moneymakers.

Study of all data on Roche's highly debated Tamiflu says it does help

A significant new study of Roche's blockbuster flu fighter Tamiflu has found that, while it has side effects, it can reduce symptoms by a day and keep some patients out of the hospital with complications, Reuters reports.

Victoza powers Novo's strong year; CEO projects growth for 2015

Novo Nordisk CEO Lars Sorensen told investors today that 2014 had been a more challenging year than most, then rolled off a series of results that showed significant leaps in sales both in the U.S. and worldwide. He then waved off any worries about a price war in the U.S. being a significant issue for the world's largest maker of insulin products this year.

Viehbacher's ouster, severance raise red flags for CEO candidates

So far, Sanofi has come up empty-handed in its hunt for a CEO to replace the ousted Chris Viehbacher. And the mystery surrounding his firing may have something to do with it.

Lilly's sales and earnings continue their free-fall but CEO Lechleiter sees good things coming

Eli Lilly CEO John Lechleiter promised today that the company's finances will improve over the next decade. It would be hard for them to get much worse. Lilly's fourth-quarter net income was down 41%. Its revenue was down 12%. Its earnings were down 40% to $0.40 a share.

India warns drugmakers failure not an option for price data due next week

India's National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority has told drugmakers that failure to hand in drug price and sales data by next week is not an option.

Branded drug prices leapt almost 15% last year, led by pain pills, COPD and heart meds

It's no secret that branded drugmakers often rely on price hikes to keep U.S. sales growth coming, especially on older meds whose patents are close to the ends of their lives. But according to new data, prices spiked more than 10% last year--a trend that may fuel the payer backlash that's been steadily mounting.

New Celgene meds power forward, but Revlimid's still the Big Kahuna

Celgene edged past analyst estimates for the fourth quarter and full year, with earnings of $3.71 per share and $7.67 billion in revenue for 2014. Its powerhouse remedy for multiple myeloma, Revlimid, still accounts for the lion's share of those sales, at $4.98 billion in 2014 revenue, an increase of 16%.

Looking to get out of the hot seat, Salix to restate financials for past 7 quarters

After completing a review of inventory issues that inflated sales figures for some of its products, Salix is going to tell it like it is. The company will restate its financial reports for the last 7 quarters, a move it thinks will put the issue to rest.

Ex-FDA chief testifies against J&J in Risperdal liability case

Johnson & Johnson knew as early as 2001 that its antipsychotic drug Risperdal could cause boys to grow breasts, former FDA chief David Kessler testified in Philadelphia court Wednesday. That's 5 years before the company added a warning about the side effect to the drug's official label.

Gilead zooms past AbbVie in hep C race with UnitedHealth deal

Gilead Sciences racked up another point in the pricing battle with its hep C rival AbbVie as UnitedHealth Group chose Harvoni as its preferred hepatitis C treatment over AbbVie's Viekira Pak, weeks after Gilead scored deals with three insurers to make Harvoni the primary option for patients.

Trans-Pacific trade talks on biologics not even close to agreement: USTR

Don't look for any Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement on patent lengths for biologics this year. That was the message delivered at a congressional hearing on Tuesday.

Pakistan's proposed drug-pricing policy, two years in the making, satisfies no one

SINGAPORE--More than two years in the making, Pakistan's proposed new drug-pricing policy still hasn't won over drugmakers. The country's health ministry proffered a draft that would peg prices to those in India and Bangladesh, with generic prices at 30% less, on average, than the brand price in those neighboring countries.

Lupin now free to make a $1B deal with foreign investors, thanks to Indian cabinet decision

Lupin is now allowed to sell off up to 49% of the company--if it decides it wants to--in a deal or deals that could be worth more than $1 billion. At Lupin's request, India's Cabinet decided to raise the cap on foreign investment in the company; previously, Lupin was allowed to sell up to a 33% stake.

Amgen zooms past $20B in sales, sparked by Enbrel, Neupogen and denosumab

After leapfrogging pharma stalwarts like Eli Lilly and Bristol-Myers Squibb with its 2014 revenue haul, Amgen is enjoying its new status as one of the industry's top-selling drugmakers. And it's hoping new regulatory filings for multiple myeloma drug Kyprolis can help it keep the sales leaps coming.

Novartis braces for psoriasis pricing war as it preps for Cosentyx launch

Novartis' Cosentyx may be the first next-gen psoriasis treatment to hit the U.S. market, but it certainly won't be the last--and the Swiss drugmaker knows it. So while competitors usher their own prospects down the regulatory pathway, the company is girding for the price war it envisions in its future.

Mylan said to be eyeing a $7B-plus bid for rising star Hikma

Hikma Pharmaceuticals is no stranger to buyout rumors. The Jordan-based drugmaker pops up often in deal talk, partly because of its sales and infrastructure in emerging markets. Now, there's another reason or two--its recent win on the gout drug Mitigare and its impending entry onto London's Financial Times Stock Exchange. New rumors, too.