Latest Headlines

Latest Headlines

Merck pays $1B to buy into Bayer's cardio future

Merck plans to use the proceeds of its planned $14.2 billion consumer business sale to Bayer to beef up its pipeline, and the in-transition pharma giant isn't wasting any time, signing a billion-dollar deal with its new partner in a move to get its hands on some new cardiovascular drugs.

Bayer aims to crush consumer health rivals with $14B Merck unit buyout

And the winner is Bayer. After months of speculation--and reported bids from the likes of Sanofi, Novartis and Reckitt Benckiser--the German drugmaker has snagged Merck's consumer health unit in a $14.2 billion deal. The consumer buyout solidifies Bayer's position at the top of the global OTC game and provides Merck with a cardio collaboration--along with a hefty chunk of change.

Merck proposal to sell Singulair without a prescription hits resistance

Most drugmakers can only watch wistfully as sales of blockbusters fade into the horizon when generics come online. Merck had hoped to keep the memory of asthma drug Singulair's former stature alive by turning it into an over-the-counter (OTC) product. But an FDA panel of experts thinks that is too risky for consumers.

Big Pharma aims to cast off old drugs to raise $42B for higher-profit R&D efforts

Sanofi, Merck, and Abbott Laboratories are all planning to sell off portfolios of drugs that have lost their patent protection. The proceeds from such sales could be significant--$7 billion for Sanofi, $15 billion for Merck, and $5 billion for Abbott. Add in AstraZeneca, whose CEO proposed deals for its neuroscience and anti-infectives businesses, and you have another $15 billion in potential proceeds--a total of $42 billion.

Reports: Bayer closing in on deal for Merck OTC unit with Reckitt out of the way

With Reckitt Beckiser out of the race for Merck's consumer health unit, Bayer is in exclusive talks with the New Jersey company, reports say, and it could have a $14 billion deal wrapped up in the next few days.

Merck halts study of the billion-dollar cancer drug vintafolide

Merck and partner Endocyte have stopped a late-stage study of the ovarian cancer-treating vintafolide on the advice of a data safety monitoring board, saying the much-hyped drug failed to move the needle on progression-free survival.

Next deal up for Merck: Selling $15 billion worth of older brands

With its consumer unit apparently on the verge of a sale, Merck is weighing its next asset disposal. Reuters sources say that the U.S.-based drugmaker may unload $15 billion worth of older drugs, in a move that would mirror previous sell-offs by GlaxoSmithKline--and an in-the-works Sanofi deal.

Report: Drug prices skyrocketing, with no end in sight

Despite a wave of M&A deals aimed at increasing efficiency and lowering expenses in the pharmaceutical industry, drug prices continue to rise, with several drug companies nearly doubling the costs of key products over the last 7 years. That's the conclusion of an analysis prepared for Bloomberg by DRX, a California-based provider of health software.

Looking to sales growth, Merck rolls out vaccine adherence plan

Vaccine sales can only grow as much as patient adherence to immunization recommendations allows, but Merck is rolling out a new initiative that could give its vaccines unit a boost.

Reckitt Benckiser gives up on Merck OTC deal, leaving Bayer open shot

British consumer goods giant Reckitt Benckiser indicated Wednesday that bidding for the consumer healthcare unit of Merck had gotten out of hand, and so it decided to step aside. By dropping out it would appear to leave Germany's Bayer as the likely buyer for the unit.