Gedeon Richter, Astron to partner on generics; Swiss doctors urged to stop using Rotarix;

 @FiercePharma: Post-reform, pharma will market to payers. Report | Follow @FiercePharma

> Gedeon Richter and India's Astron Research agreed to jointly develop several generic products, with costs jointly funded and the end products independently marketed. Release

> Switzerland has urged doctors to temporarily stop using GlaxoSmithKline's Rotarix vaccine, regulators said on Tuesday, making it the latest country to caution against the product's use. Report

> Pfizer spent $5.6 million lobbying federal leaders and agencies in the fourth quarter on multiple aspects of the healthcare overhaul, government spending on medication and other issues, according to a quarterly disclosure. Report

> Virginia wants to join a federal lawsuit claiming that health care giant Johnson & Johnson paid tens of millions of dollars in kickbacks so nursing homes would put patients on its schizophrenia drug. Report

> Some Jordanian pharmaceutical companies fear that operations of the Israeli company Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. may affect them if it chooses to cooperate with a local company. Article

> Medicare will pay for the use of facial filling treatments in certain HIV patients with sunken cheeks and other similar problems who are also depressed. Report

> A subsidiary of Abbott Laboratories has started its cash tender offer for Facet Biotech. Report

> Sanofi-Aventis and Bristol-Myers Squibb say their Duoplavin-Duocover combination tablet has been approved in the European Union. Report

> GEA Pharma Systems has opened a factory in India, aiming to reduce the cost of solid dose and liquid pharmaceutical processing equipment by around 40 percent compared with Europe. Report

> Montgomery Township officials are still keeping a close eye on Teva Pharmaceuticals' proposed warehouse development in neighboring Warrington Township. Item

Biotech News

 @FierceBiotech: Merck KGaA puts Stimuvax trial on hold after encephalitis strikes. Report | Follow @FierceBiotech

 @JohnCFierce: Carl Icahn is having a heck of a week in biotech. Genzyme black eye, talking up Biogen sale. And it's only Wednesday | Follow @JohnCFierce

> Zalbin data underscores new option for hepatitis C patients. Article

> Switzerland's Lonza is reportedly in talks to acquire control of Aptuit Laurus, a large drug R&D/manufacturing operation with 600 employees in India. Story

> Struggling Poniard lays off more workers as it ponders options. Report

> Like a lot of biotech companies, Tempe, AZ-based Capstone (CAPS) Therapeutics has high hopes for its mid-stage program. If its Phase II trial of AZX100 for scar reduction produces promising proof-of-concept data, its executive chairman says the drug has blockbuster market potential. Item

> Vernalis shares dive after pain program flunks Phase IIb. Story

Medical Device News

> Device industry mixed on healthcare reform. Story

> Panel questions data backing ReGen's Menaflex device. Article

> CryoLife fires back in HemoStase dispute. Report

And Finally... Live right and Americans could all live an extra 4 to 5 years. Report

Virtual Clinical Trials Summit

Virtual Clinical Trials Summit: The Premier Educational Event Focused on Decentralized Clinical Trials

In this virtual environment, we will look at current and future trends for ongoing virtual trials, diving into the many ways companies can improve patient engagement and trial behavior to enhance retention with a focus on emerging technology and harmonized data access across the clinical trial system.