Spotlight On... Animal welfare groups blast fast-food giant for 'cop out' pledge on antibiotics; Akorn concludes audit; FDA sends warning to Neogen and 5 other companies; Kindred charts positive trial of weight-management drug for cats; and more...

> Akorn ($AKRX), which manufactures and distributes specialty veterinary drugs, announced that its audit committee has completed its investigation of accounting errors and did not find evidence of fraud but did make remedial recommendations to the board that it is now implementing. Release

> The FDA announced that it has sent warning letters to animal drug manufacturers--including Neogen ($NEOG), Virbac and Dechra--regarding the improper marketing of unapproved versions of levothyroxine sodium for the treatment of hypothyroidism in dogs. Release

> Kindred Biosciences ($KIN) announced that its drug for managing weight in cats, KIND-010, was successful in a pilot field study and that the enrollment for the pivotal effectiveness study is ahead of schedule. Release

> Jaguar Animal Health ($JAGX) announced that in a proof-of-concept study of SB-300, its drug to treat gastrointestinal ulcers in horses, between 78% and 89% of treated horses saw an improvement or resolution of symptoms, vs. 25% of horses who were given a placebo. Release

> France's Amatsigroup, a provider of services for veterinary drug developers, acquired Q-Biologicals of Belgium. Release

> Texas A&M announced it will expand its veterinary program to four sister campuses in the state, including those in West Texas, Prairie View, Tarleton and Kingsville. Article

> Phibro Animal Health ($PAHC) announced it has completed its acquisition of the assets of MVP Laboratories, a maker of livestock vaccines. Release

> ImmuCell ($ICCC) announced an underwritten public offering of 1,123,810 shares at $5.25 per share, which is expected to close around Feb. 3. Release

> A study published in the journal BMC Infectious Diseases reported that a smartphone app enabled veterinarians in Ranchi, India, to track and vaccinate 70% of free-roaming dogs against rabies--the threshold needed to minimize the risk of the disease being passed to people. Release

> Pet insurer Trupanion ($TRUP) was named the preferred provider of medical coverage by Pet Partners, a chain of 60 veterinary hospitals. Release

> Hester Biosciences announced that its poultry vaccines portfolio helped drive its third-quarter sales up 10% to INR 242 million ($3.6 million), and that its net profit jumped 41% to INR 47.6 million ($700,000). Release (PDF)