GSK inks JV deal for Chinese flu shot; EU committee rejects Bristol cancer med

> GlaxoSmithKline signed a joint venture agreement with China's Shenzhen Neptunus Interlong Bio-Technique to co-develop seasonal influenza vaccines and pre-pandemic/pandemic influenza vaccines, aiming to target strains of the virus specific to China, Hong Kong and Macau. Report

> European drug watchdogs have rejected Bristol-Myers Squibb's breast cancer treatment Ixempra, saying that the risk of nerve damage doesn't outweigh the "small" survival benefit. Report

> Europe's Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) did give a thumbs up to a variety of meds, including Amgen's hemotology drug NPlate and Novartis' blood pressure med Rasilez HCT. Report

> Johnson & Johnson said late Thursday an FDA advisory panel recommended that its catheter system be approved for a new use in treating irregular heart rhythms. Report

> Depomed and Solvay Pharmaceuticals have ink a licensing deal for DM-1796, its investigational form of gabapentin formerly known as Gabapentin GR, for pain treatment in North America and Puerto Rico. Release

> British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline said U.S. regulators have approved its drug Promacta to treat bleeding problems caused by a rare immune system disorder. Report

> Wall Street brushed off Amgen's suspension of enrollment in a cancer drug study Thursday, saying the developing treatment motesanib is not expected to be a key part of the biotechnology company's future revenue. Report

> CombinatorRX, a Cambridge biotechnology company, said it plans to layoff another 30 employees, just weeks after it said it was cutting 52 jobs. Report

> After hunting the biopharma world for more than a year, Ireland's Elan has hired former Eli Lilly exec Carlos Paya as its new president. Paya will be in charge of the company's scientific, clinical and medical initiatives. Report 

> Amgen has been dealt a serious blow to its hopes to develop new cancer therapies. Researchers for Amgen and Takeda suspended enrollment in a late-stage trial for motesanib after tracking a higher death rate among patients taking the oncology drug compared to the control group. Report

> Radius Health has ginned an additional $15 million for its Series C, bringing its total take to $82.5 million. Report

> Researchers for Novartis AG say that a better understanding of the role genetics plays in disease has allowed them to significantly cut the amount of research time it takes to prove the effectiveness of a new therapeutic. Report

> Theravance won the crucial backing of an FDA advisory committee for its new antibiotic for serious skin infections. The panel voted 21 to 5 to recommend approval of telavancin, which is also designed to treat MRSA infections that don't respond to currently used antibiotics. Report

And Finally... Call it the power of suggestion: Just reading drug-warning labels can make a highly imaginative patient feel sick. Report

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