Investors snap up IMS Health for $5.2B; Amgen cancer med fails to boost overall survival in study;

> IMS Health, a data provider to the pharmaceutical industry, is to be acquired by TPG and Canada Pension Plan for $5.2 billion. Report

> Amgen's cancer drug Vectibix in combination with chemo failed to improve overall survival in metastatic colorectal cancer patients, in spite of significantly prolonging progression-free survival. Release

> Johnson & Johnson's record-setting $1.7 billion TNF-alpha patent verdict against Abbott Laboratories has held up so far in court, despite the latter's post-trial motions. Report

> GlaxoSmithKline won approval from the World Health Organization for its pneumococcal vaccine Synflorix, clearing the way for it to be given to children in the developing world. Report

> India's Aurobindo Pharma got the U.S. FDA nod for its version of GlaxoSmithKline's seizure drug Lamictal. Report

> Sun Pharmaceutical secured FDA approval for its copycat version of Allergan's Acular, used to treat ocular itching. Report

Biotech News

> Complete Genomics reported yesterday that it has successfully chipped away at the cost of sequencing a genome. Six years ago the cost was $300 million, a million smackers in 2007 and $60,000 last year. Now the company says its researchers completed the task at a cost of about $4,400 for the reagents needed to sequence three genomes. Article

> Tennessee-based Graceway Pharmaceuticals, a portfolio company of GTCR Golder Rauner, has acquired worldwide rights to a Gilead Sciences molecule. Graceway report

> Bethesda, MD-based Micromet has agreed to buy out MedImmune's North American rights to blinatumomab, a potential treatment for lymphoma and leukemia. Micromet report

> Bellevue, WA-based Light Sciences Oncology has garnered itself a $23.3 million line of credit, in addition to another $11.8 million in warrants. This comes after the company raised $40 million in venture capital in June 2008. Report

> Gloucester Pharmaceuticals said yesterday that the FDA has approved its lead drug Istodax (romidepsin) for cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL), a rare skin malignancy. Report

And Finally... While healthcare experts debate comparative effectiveness, a hospital-and-clinic network in Utah and Idaho has translated its own effectiveness research into better patient care. Report