Merck to cut 160 jobs at Irish plant; Top R&D exec jumps from Genentech to academia;

 @FiercePharma: Special Report: Biggest Battles in Biopharma. Report | Follow @FiercePharma

> Management at Merck's pharmaceutical plant in West Cork, Ireland, have said they will be cutting the workforce there by 160 over the next three years. News

> The No. 2 research executive at Genentech is leaving for a post in academia--marking one of the highest-profile departures since the U.S. biotechnology company was acquired by Swiss drugmaker Roche. Item

> Pfizer's Quigley unit, a former asbestos maker, was denied permission to exit bankruptcy by a judge who found the world's largest drug company manipulated the bankruptcy process to benefit itself. Report

> Basilea says that its soon-to-be ex-partner Johnson & Johnson is to discontinue sales of the antibiotic Zevtera in Switzerland following problems it has had elsewhere in getting the drug approved. Story

> Some 140 Astrazeneca staffers walked out on strike for the first time in company history in a row over pensions. Story

> Pfizer's animal health unit is teaming up with the American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation to research new ways to prevent, treat and cure dog diseases. Article

> Danish diabetes drugmaker Novo Nordisk may use proceeds from the sale of its stake in biotech firm ZymoGenetics to buy back shares, its CFO said. News

> Germany remains the most attractive of 10 pharmaceutical markets in western Europe, but it will increasingly be seen as presenting a challenge, especially to innovative drugmakers, says a new report. Item

Biotech News

@FierceBiotech: BMS forges $885M deal to buy ZymoGenetics. Article | Follow @FierceBiotech

 @JohnCFierce: Boston-based Rhythm expands Series A to $40M with Third Rock jumping in. Article | Follow @JohnCFierce 

> Acceleron inks $498M pact with Shire for lead muscle drug. News

> Lilly prepares to inject $150M into three new biotech funds. Report

> Anchor lands $480M discovery pact with J&J unit. Item

Vaccines News

> Vaccine gives dangerous pneumococcus strains an opening. Article

> AIDS vax group reveals global research strategy. Report

> AAP calls for mandatory flu vax for healthcare workers. Item

> U.K. tallies losses on pandemic vaccine. News

Manufacturing News

> Lonza revs for GSK clinical supplies. Report

> GMP fixes questioned in India vax plant restarts. News

> Pharma eases into shipping security upgrade. Article

> Novel ops could protect Genzyme workers from layoffs. Story

> India fakes report fails sniff test. Report

> Good news: Merck to add 310 jobs; bad news: Biovail/Valeant to cut 1,100. Story

And Finally... Johnson & Johnson has pledged grant money, drugs and research funding for new HIV and tuberculosis medications as part of a five-year, private sector effort to improve the health up to 120 million women and children in developing nations each year. News