China arrests 5 FDA officials on graft charges; Calif. lawmaker shelves drug data-mining ban;

 @FiercePharma: Moody's: Big Pharma buying spree leaves big debt behind. Article | Follow @FiercePharma

> Five officials from China's food and drug watchdog have been arrested on graft charges only three years after its former head was executed for the same offense. Report

> Murmansk pharmacists received an unexpected visitor when Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who was visiting the northern port city, ordered his driver to stop so he could check on medicine prices. Report

> A California assemblyman was forced to shelve a bill that would have limited the sale of patient prescription records for marketing purposes because he couldn't muster the necessary votes. Report

> The Japan-based unit of British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline has decided to disclose the payments it makes to doctors and research institutions starting this fiscal year, the Nikkei business daily says. Report

> Hospira received a warning letter from the FDA after an inspection of two manufacturing plants in North Carolina. Report

> AstraZeneca says there is no threat to the supply of medicines to patients at the moment as a result of the flying ban over most of northern and central Europe. Report

> Three years short of clocking its third decade in existence, Sun Pharma has appointed a chief executive to help co-steer the over Rs 4,000 crore drug-maker through transition and expansion into more international landscapes. News

> Amgen's Vectibix, a drug for colon cancer, may be useful to even fewer patients than scientists previously found, according to a company-funded study of gene variations. Report

> At Fred Poordad's bustling hepatitis C clinic in the heart of Los Angeles, one in every five patients receives no treatment. They are waiting for a wave of new drugs, expected in the next 18 months, that may boost their chance at a cure by as much as 10-fold. Story

Biotech News

  @FierceBiotech: VC dips in Q1, but biotech still leads the pack. Story | Follow @FierceBiotech 

  @JohnCFierce: Vienna meeting whets appetite for late-stage hep C drugs. Some patients waiting for approvals. Story | Follow @JohnCFierce

> Cadence shares surge in plans to resubmit pain therapy NDA. Story

> Biotechs start scrambling for $1 billion Treasury windfall. Item

> Javelin and Myriad terminate merger pact. Story

> Hepatitis C drug developers in race to win "warehoused" patients. Report

> Experts share tips for developing drugs using a virtual model. News

Biotech IT News

> DATATRAK has announced compatibility for its eClinical software suite. Story

> Medidata lands Kitasato University as Rave implementer. Story

> Small biotechs win in Oracle/Phase Forward deal. Article

> Genentech a believer in Google online sharing apps. News

> Ariana analysis tech improves trial design. Report

> Integrium's enrollment skill drives need for real-time tracking. Story

And Finally... Dr. Mortimer D. Sackler, the psychiatrist who with his brothers bought a small pharmaceutical company and turned it into a major player in the industry by developing the powerful and controversial painkiller OxyContin, died March 24 in Gstaad, Switzerland, where he kept one of his many homes. He was 93. Report