Amylin board tries "poison" antidote; Sepracor's Pristiq challenge gets appeals hearing;

> Carl Icahn and Eastbourne Capital won a small battle in their war for Amylin Pharmaceuticals as the company's directors decided to try to circumvent "poison" provisions that would be triggered by a change in board control--but some experts doubt that the avoidance strategy will work. Report | Report

> Sepracor's challenge to patents on Wyeth's Pristiq antidepressant will be heard by the U.S. Board of Patent Appeals in January 2010. Report

> One of Cipla Medpro South Africa's shareholders said it will reject a buyout offer from Adcock Ingram Holdings, holding out for a higher price. Report

> The Indian Patent Office has denied Gilead Science patent rights for its anti-influenza drug oseltamivir phosphate, marketed as Tamiflu, in India. Report

> Actavis was the first to launch fluvastatin SR 80mg, the generic equivalent of Novartis's Lescol XL, in the UK and the Netherlands last week. Report

> Banyu, Merck's subsidiary in Japan, has tapped the generics company Mylan to promote two of its key cardiovascular products in the country. Report

> Device maker Smith & Nephew has received a subpoena from the U.S. Department of Justice over its ultrasound stimulation product Exogen. Report

> Colorado-based Accera, a biotech company exploring CNS therapies, announced today that it is launching a spin-off company called Neuera Pharmaceuticals. Report

> With its staff whittled down to a handful of dealmakers, TorreyPines Therapeutics has hired on an investment banker to look at a possible sale of the company as it ponders its remaining options. Report

> Ensemble Discovery has teamed up with Bristol-Myers Squibb on a new discovery program to develop new drugs aimed at "high-value" targets. Report

> Several venture capital companies have joined hands to provide a $36 million Series A round to Lycera, a University of Michigan spinoff developing small molecule therapies for autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease. Report

> G. Steven Burrill of Burrill & Company outlines several steps biotech companies can take to find cash, pick the best partner and stay afloat in the economic crisis. Report

And Finally... Pharma dealmakers making the rounds at drug conferences these days are coming with a message: We're ready to buy, but we're going to be careful. Report