Merck to start mailing Vioxx checks; Clinton foundation inks malaria drug-price deal;

> Merck announced it would start distributing payments next month to people who qualify in the $4.85 billion settlement of Vioxx claims. Release

> Former president Bill Clinton's foundation has signed pricing agreements with several suppliers involved in making a malaria-fighting drug in an effort to stabilize the medication's fluctuating costs and ensure more dependable availability. Report

> MDS said Friday it will cut about 210 jobs at its MDS Pharma Services and MDS Analytical Technologies to reduce costs, and write down the value of a Canadian facility. Report

> Johnson & Johnson and its McNeil unit were cleared by a California jury of liability for injuries suffered by a girl whose allergic reaction to Children's Motrin left her blind. Report

> A British Medical Journal article analyzed the cost-effectiveness of vaccinating 12-year-old girls against human papilloma virus, or HPV, and in the process concluded that GlaxoSmithKline's Cervarix--chosen as the official U.K. shot at an undisclosed price--must cost the government £13 to £21 less per dose than its competitor, Merck's Gardasil. Report

> Gilead Sciences said Thursday its second-quarter profit rose 9 percent on sales of its HIV drugs Atripla and Truvada, which currently dominate the market. Report

> India-based drug maker Cipla said its first quarter to June net profit rose to 1.4 billion rupees from 1.2 billion rupees a year earlier, a 17 percent increase. Report

> Anyone tracking trends in biotech financing is likely to get a chill from the latest numbers on the Canadian biotech scene. Canada report

> Waltham, MA-based BG Medicine garnered $40 million in its fourth venture round. Report

> Rockville, MA-based MacroGenics has struck a deal to buy Raven Biotechnologies, a South San Francisco-based developer of oncology drugs. Report

> One of the highest profile stem cell developers in the U.S. may be close to shutting down. The Boston Globe is reporting that in new SEC documents Advanced Cell Technology has said that it can't continue to operate past July 31 without new funding or a restructuring to reduce expenses. report

> PTC Therapeutics has snared a rich licensing deal with Genzyme for its lead development program. Genzyme has agreed to pay $100 million up front for PTC124. PTC report

> The UK's chief medical officer is predicting that new vaccines will be available within five to 10 years that can protect hospital patients against deadly superbugs. Report

> Scientific American is reporting on the successful advance of a preclinical Alzheimer's vaccine that combines small amounts of amyloid beta and interleukin-4, which is delivered in an inactivated herpes virus. Report

> An experimental dendritic cell vaccine for glioblastoma multiforme--a lethal brain cancer--has demonstrated a successful immune response in a key study. Report

And Finally... A drug once used to treat hay fever shows promise in staving off Alzheimer's, a new study shows. Report

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