Cubist sues Teva over antibiotic copy; U.K. calls on drugmakers to pool patents;

> Cubist Pharmaceuticals has sued Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, claiming the generics maker is infringing three U.S. patents on the IV antibiotic Cubicin. Report

> A U.K. minister will today challenge drug companies to help the developing world by giving up patent rights to compounds that could be used in cures for neglected diseases and medicines for children with HIV. Report

> The FDA has now denied four petitions for 30-month stays of approval for generic versions of drugs containing "old" antibiotics made by Medicis Pharmaceutical (Solodyn), Warner-Chilcott (Doryx), Roche CellCept), and Stiefel Laboratories (Evoclin). Report

> Johnson & Johnson has shuttered its headquarters in Israel, laying off 20 employees, including the CEO at the site; the closure is just one of many J&J is undertaking globally as it shuts down operations with less than $50 million in sales, an Israeli newspaper reported. Report

> Hospira, which makes drug delivery systems and devices, said Tuesday it will eliminate 10 percent of its work force as part of a cost-cutting restructuring plan. Report

> Richard Hollis, chief executive of Hollis-Eden Pharmaceuticals, the company he founded in 1994, was fired Wednesday, according to documents filed yesterday with the SEC. Report

> Novartis chose its plant in Grimsby, England, for its annual People Award, which recognized the site's 500 workers for their energy, involvement, engagement and satisfaction. Report

> A struggling Adventrx is cutting down to a skeleton staff, suspending its remaining development activities and concentrating all its attention on deal-making. Report

> A federal appeals court has upheld a new patent rule that could seriously impact biotech and pharma companies. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit upheld a new rule that requires an inventor who files a large number of claims to back up those claims with information detailing why the invention is eligible for protection. Report

> Indian officials are raising fresh questions about the potential safety threat posed by clinical trials after the country's top drug regulator concluded that a three-month-old infant died in a vaccine trial for Wyeth after being inappropriately recruited for the study. Report

> Can Human Genome Sciences pull out of its nosedive? That's essentially the question that the Washington Post poses as it examines a high-profile biotech company that has stumbled at a critical point in its development. Report

> Merck Serono, a division of Germany's Merck KGaA, has set aside $55 million for a new venture fund that will invest in start-up biotech companies at a time many developers are starving for cash. Report

> For years researchers have achieved exciting results treating cancer in genetically engineered mouse models, only to find that efficacy tumbles to a marginal rate once the same therapy is tried in humans. But now a growing number of researchers are turning to dogs to take the place of mice in animal cancer studies. Report

> A consortium involving NHS Blood and Transplant, the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service and the Wellcome Trust is backing a new research project that will attempt to create 'synthetic' blood from embryonic stem cells. Backers say that the new blood supply should be ready for testing in humans within three years. Report

And Finally... Average blood levels of Vitamin D fell dramatically between 1994 and 2004, researchers found. Release

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