UCB's 2010 outlook disappoints investors; Obama plots cost-based push for reform;

   @FiercePharma: AZ to pay $647M for Merck rights. Article | Follow @FiercePharma

> Belgian drugmaker UCB disappointed investors with a 2010 outlook depressed by yet lower sales of its top epilepsy medicine, despite predicting two new products would be blockbusters later this decade. Report

> President Obama this week will begin a climactic push to rally restive Congressional Democrats to pass healthcare legislation by emphasizing that failure will cause higher insurance premiums and lost coverage for individuals and businesses. Report

> Nine House Democrats indicated in an Associated Press survey they have not ruled out switching their "no" votes to "yes" on President Obama's health care overhaul. Report

> A report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office found that Medicare Part D beneficiaries who used at least one specialty tier-eligible drug were more likely to reach the catastrophic coverage threshold, after which Medicare pays at least 80 percent of all drug costs. Report | Report

> Perrigo reached a $48 million agreement to acquire an Australian over-the-counter, store-brand pharmaceuticals supplier. Report

> Bioton, a Polish insulin producer, signed a deal to sell its antibiotic unit to Polpharma, a Polish drugmaker, for 80 million zloty. Report

Biotech News

 @FierceBiotech: Are activist shareholders poison for biotech? Article | Follow @FierceBiotech

 @JohnCFierce: OSI has a good shot at triggering a bidding war. Saying no to Astellas could be great start to a beautiful friendship. Follow @JohnCFierce

> QuatRx gains $125M licensing pact. Story

> An FDA advisory panel has voted to back Bristol-Myers Squibb's belatacept, a new therapy designed to prevent the rejection of new kidney transplants. Item

> Dendreon shares gyrate on Provenge panel rumor. Story

> CombinatoRx's complex merger deal with Neuromed will pay off with a $40 million milestone earned with today's announcement that the FDA has approved Exalgo, a once-daily pain therapy. Item

> Archimedes gets $100M bankroll and names a new CEO. Story

Biotech Research News

> Implanted neurons trigger burst of mental agility. Report

> Marker aids in detection of hidden cancer. Item

> Researchers ready leptin test for Type 1 diabetes. Report

> Experts discuss challenges, promises of personalized medicine. Story

Pharma Manufacturing News

> Walloped with $26M in fines, KV closes ETHEX. Story

> New website serves REMS writers. Item

> Reefer services sets sights on pharma. Article

And Finally... Young people who smoke cannabis or marijuana for six years or more are twice as likely to have psychotic episodes, hallucinations or delusions than people who have never used the drug. Report