Schering loses fight for $438M tax refund; Genentech to pay $290M-plus for Lonza plant;

> Schering-Plough lost a bid for a refund of taxes paid on $690 million in profits earned offshore and repatriated, when a U.S. court sided with the Internal Revenue Service. Report

> Roche's Genentech exercised an option to buy a Lonza drug manufacturing facility in Singapore for $290 million upfront and up to $70 million in milestone payments. Report

> China's Sinovac Biotech said it won a bid to supply its seasonal influenza vaccine, Anflu, to the Beijing Public Health Bureau. Report

> GlaxoSmithKline is in talks with the Indian government to introduce the antiflu med Relenza in that country. Report

> The Canadian government should donate any surplus swine flu vaccine to poorer countries, say ethicists and medical specialists who are warning that a "me-first" mentality will doom efforts to combat the global pandemic. Report

> Ranbaxy Laboratories plans to market the osteoporosis drug Evista in Romania via its subsidiary there, under a license Eli Lilly granted to Ranbaxy's new parent Daiichi Sankyo. Report

> India's chief justice is reassigning Novartis' challenge to the government's denial of a patent for its cancer drug Glivec to another bench, after the one assigned recused himself from the case. Report

> Sanofi-Aventis got regulatory approval to market its allergic rhinitis drug Xyzal to combat indoor allergies for children 6 months and older and for outdoor allergies for those 2 and older. Report

> Hospira won the FDA nod for six new single- and multiple-dose vial presentations of the clot prevention med heparin. Release

Biotech News

> The Chinese company Sinovac says that a large group of experts has signed off on its new swine flu vaccine, clearing the way for a production license that could come in a matter of days. Report

> There was plenty of news generated over the weekend at the big European Society of Cardiology meeting in Barcelona. In addition to the headlines for Boehringer and AstraZeneca, above, Sanofi Aventis and other developers also unveiled some impressive achievements. News

> Scientists for AstraZeneca have pulled the wraps off their head-to-head Phase III trial for the blockbuster clotting drug candidate Brilinta, offering a detailed look at the therapy's improved performance over Plavix for reducing the risk of heart attacks without increasing the risk of bleeding. Report

> Boehringer Ingelheim says that its experimental blood thinner Pradaxa is safer, more effective and simpler to use than the generic warfarin, a standard therapy for treating patients with erratic heart rates. Article

Research News

> A drug that targets a newly discovered genetic master switch which controls the formation of fat tissue would be able to prevent obesity as well as a host of ailments like diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, says a team of researchers at the University of Central Florida. Report

> The once red-hot California market has turned ice cold, and the sudden change in the economic climate on the West Coast has afflicted the state's ambitious plans to boost stem cell research work. Article

> Working with scientists at Japan's Okayama University, San Diego-based AntiCancer has been working on a new technique that will make cancer cells fluorescent--making it easier for specialists to spot and remove them during surgery. Report

> An international team of scientists that paired researchers in Texas and Japan has identified a small molecule therapy which tinkers with the genetic machinery involved in the way the body turns food into fat. Report

And Finally... Pfizer PR chief Ray Kerins blasted the FDA's lack of guidance on social media as "a problem" at a recent conference. Report