Spotlight On... Sinovac announces rights issue amid takeover battle; Sosei names Peter Bains its next CEO; and more...

> Beijing-based Sinovac Biotech has announced a rights issue via a board-approved payment of one preferred share purchase right on each outstanding common share as a form of a poison pill defense amid rival offers for the firm. In February, Sinovac received an unsolicited offer of $7 a share from a consortium of Chinese drug and investment firms, placing it 13% above an earlier management-led offer of $6.18 a share. Release

> Ajinomoto Pharmaceuticals and Tokyo-based Mochida Pharmaceutical will co-develop oral chronic constipation candidate elobixibat, or AJG533, now in Phase III studies in Japan. The move comes as Tokyo-based firms Ajinomoto and Eisai get set to launch GI operations under EA Pharma next month. Release

> Tokyo-based Sosei Group has named former GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK) executive Peter Bains as the next CEO to founder and current chief Shinichi Tamura. Release

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> Tatsuya Kondo has been re-appointed as chief of Japan's Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices Agency (PMDA) for a fifth two-year term that begins on April 1. MHLW website

> Tokyo-based Eisai has withdrawn a new drug application in Japan for ultra-high dose mecobalamin to treat amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, that had been submitted in May of last year after the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency found insufficient evidence to proceed with approval. Release

> Sanofi Pasteur's dengue vaccine, Dengvaxia, received an award for "The Vaccine Breakthrough of 2016" at the 6th annual Biopharma Industry Awards Event in Singapore. Release

> Osaka-based Toyobo has developed an improved version of its reagent for gene amplification, according to a release, that is used in epigenome studies to investigate how genes change due to factors such as cancer, high blood pressure and obesity. Report

> Singapore's Ministry of Health has issued a new set of clinical practice guidelines on treating tuberculosis for all doctors starting in April. Report

> The board of Santa Clara, CA-based Affymetrix has decided to accept a $1.3 billion takeover offer from Thermo Fisher Scientific, shunning a rival $1.6 billion bid led by China private equity firm Summit Capital. Release

> Hong Kong-listed Alibaba Health Information Technology, or Ali Health, has bought a 25% stake in China Resources Wandong Medical Equipment's medical imaging unit for $35 million. Release

> Wuhan-based Humanwell Healthcare announced it will pay $550 million to buy New York State generic drug firm Epic Pharma via a newly formed U.S. subsidiary. Release (Chinese language)

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