Merck eyes Indian vaccine market; Novartis touts pipeline;

> Merck is beefing up its sales and marketing forces in India as it aims at evolving into the country's biggest vaccine supplier by 2013. Report

> Novartis has gone out of its way to persuade analysts that it is going all out to advance new medications in its pipeline. Report

> GlaxoSmithKline announced today that the Dutch government has selected its cervical cancer vaccine, Cervarix, for a nationwide vaccination program. Report

> The Cleveland Clinic has recognized Novavax's use of genetically engineered virus-like particles in new vaccines as one of the year's top 10 medical innovations at its annual innovation summit. Report

> The venture crowd gathered for a wake of sorts at this week's BIO-Europe meeting, mourning the toll in store over the next two years of small biotechs with limited funding opportunities. Report

> Investors continued to beat a hasty retreat from Arpida's stock after analysts raised doubts about any quick approval of its new antibiotic iclaprim and cautioned that the company would likely need to raise more money. Report

> The doom and gloom talk, though, doesn't mean that the money spigot is closed. Tengion announced today that it raised $21 million in a second close of its Series C. But its CEO says its success at raising new funds came despite the increasingly chilly financial trend. Report

> Arete Therapeutics, which is developing soluble epoxide hydrolase (s-EH) inhibitors, has closed the final tranche of its Series A financing. Frazier Healthcare Ventures and Alta Partners co-led the $16.7 million tranche. This financing completes the Series A round, bringing the total amount raised to date to over $51 million. Arete release

> The drug engineering biotech Numerate raised $4 million in its first round. Release

> The FDA has accepted Vanda Pharmaceuticals resubmission of the iloperidone NDA and has set a target action date of May 6, 2009. Release

And Finally... Henry Waxman beat out incumbent John Dingell in the first round of votes for chair of House Energy and Commerce Committee. The final vote takes place today. Report

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