Feds probe Pfizer over Rapamune marketing; Appeals court lets Paxil suit go forward;

@FiercePharma: Daiichi Sankyo joins the list of branded drugmakers looking to diversify into the generics business in Japan. Article | Follow @FiercePharma

> Federal prosecutors in Oklahoma are conducting a criminal investigation of a Pfizer unit's promotional practices for organ-transplant drug Rapamune, the drugmaker disclosed. Report

> The 7th Circuit allowed a Paxil lawsuit to go forward, ruling that GlaxoSmithKline didn't meet its burden of showing with "clear evidence" that FDA would have rejected a change in the drug's labeling to warn about the enhanced possibility of suicide in young adults. Report

> The German government has sacked the head of the Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care to placate the drug industry, a German MP and professor alleged in an interview with the BMJ. Report

> The FDA formally approved Shire's Vpriv drug for the rare genetic disorder Gaucher disease; the medication will compete with Genzyme's Cerezyme treatment. Report

> Gram-negative bacteria could pose a bigger threat to health than the well-known strain of drug-resistant staph, MRSA, in part because drugmakers aren't developing many new treatments for germs of that type. Report

> Stada Arzneimittel surged in Frankfurt trading after the German generics maker beat its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization forecast for last year. Report

Biotech News

 @FierceBiotech: New Novartis CEO Jimenez scouting for 'bolt-on' buyouts. Article | Follow @FierceBiotech

 @JohnCFierce:  Rockwell Medical's conference call starts late. This company is not putting its best foot forward. Follow @JohnCFierce

> CRO PPD has opened its new, 18,000-square-foot contract research facility in Athlone, Ireland, where it hopes to eventually hire 250 employees. Story

> Anthera IPO limps out at half price. Report

> Following its acquisition of Schering-Plough, Merck has released an updated pipeline that features 20 candidates in Phase III or under regulatory review, and more than 20 candidates in Phase II development. Report

> Merck KgAA offers $7.2B for Millipore. Article

Biotech IT News

> The FDA describes concerns and considerations in the draft guidance on adaptive clinical trials released last week. Article

> Parexel International has opened an early-phase clinical trial unit in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Report

> A new service from a clinical trial operations software provider offers an assist to biotechs in getting on top of clinical trial processes and costs. Article

> EDC giving way to clinical software suites. Item

And Finally... Dr. Sheldon G. Gilgore, a leader of two major pharmaceutical companies--Pfizer and G.D. Searle--during decades of rapid change in the drug business, died Feb. 12 in his home in Naples, Fla. Report