When Pfizer and Merck KGaA announced their big immuno-oncology deal Monday, market watchers immediately started extrapolating. The tie-up means Pfizer won't come back for another try at AstraZeneca, some say. But others figure that there's still a solid chance of Pfizer, round two.
Rounding out year two of CEO Pascal Soriot's turnaround mission at AstraZeneca, the U.K. drugmaker believes it has the pipeline assets to fuel double-digit submissions and approvals by 2017, reaffirming its promise to pump up sales by 75% as former suitor Pfizer creeps back into the frame.
AstraZeneca has detailed the data from two of three studies of its late-stage combination program for lesinurad, a new drug for gout obtained in their $1.26 billion buyout of Ardea, which showed that the treatment hit the desired biomarker for blood levels of uric acid as promised--but added today that it failed to actually reduce the rate of painful flare-ups of the disease for patients in the study.
With Pfizer's eligibility to bid again for AstraZeneca nearing, the drug giant seems unlikely to make another run at its one-time target, industry-watchers say. But that doesn't mean it isn't prepping a run at someone else.
Bolstering sales of Brilinta has been a central focus for AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot as of late, and now the British drugmaker is embarking on another project designed to add some shine to the drug.
It's not often that a Big Pharma company puts out a press release announcing the launch of a preclinical drug program. Yet AstraZeneca, which has been trumpeting a major turnaround in its pipeline, has done just that--even going so far as to hype its new drug's potential impact on the market by bolstering a struggling product.
Amgen and its Big Pharma partner AstraZeneca have roped in another round of promising Phase III plaque psoriasis data for their IL-17 blockbuster contender brodalumab, which beat Johnson & Johnson's big earner Stelara in a head-to-head study.
The FDA says it has approved two companies to make generics of Roche's Valcyte but will not give any clarity on plans for a generic of AstraZeneca's blockbuster Nexium after nixing earlier approvals for troubled Ranbaxy Laboratories to make both drugs.
At about the same time that AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot was telling investors its earnings had been boosted because no generic of blockbuster Nexium had appeared, Ranbaxy Laboratories was announcing bad news on that front for itself.
The BBC has some numbers sourced from GlobalData showing that 9 out of 10 Big Pharma companies do in fact spend more on marketing than on R&D. In some cases, that's twice as much.