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Merck fails to win FDA panel backing for Vytorin heart claim

Merck & Co should not be allowed to claim that its cholesterol-lowering drug Vytorin reduces the risk of heart attacks and strokes in patients with coronary heart disease, an advisory committee to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration concluded on Monday. The panel evaluated data from an 18,000-patient trial known as Improve-It whose results showed […]

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Moderate drinking may be tied to fewer deaths in early Alzheimer’s

<span class="articleLocation”>(Reuters Health) – People with early Alzheimer’s disease who consumed light to moderate amounts of alcohol every day were less likely to die during a recent one-year study, researchers found. “These results are somewhat surprising because Alzheimer´s disease is a neurodegenerative disease and we know that alcohol can have harmful effects on the brain,” […]

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Moderate drinking may be tied to fewer deaths in early Alzheimer’s

(Reuters Health) – People with early Alzheimer’s disease who consumed light to moderate amounts of alcohol every day were less likely to die during a recent one-year study, researchers found. “These results are somewhat surprising because Alzheimer´s disease is a neurodegenerative disease and we know that alcohol can have harmful effects on the brain,” said […]

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AstraZeneca chases Acerta to secure next cancer drug winner

AstraZeneca said on Monday it was in talks that might lead to the acquisition of privately held biotech firm Acerta Pharma, a potential $5 billion-plus deal designed to build up its cancer drug portfolio.   “AstraZeneca confirms that it is exploring potential strategic options with Acerta Pharma BV. There can be no certainty that any […]

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Reckitt Benckiser misled consumers on Nurofen painkillers: Australian court

An Australian court ordered Reckitt Benckiser to pull several of its Nurofen pain relief products from the market, saying on Monday the British firm had misled consumers by marketing identical products for different types of pain.   The Federal Court ruled that the Nurofen Back Pain, Period Pain, Migraine Pain and Tension Headache products were […]

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“Cooling Cap” Device Helps Prevent Complications During Heart Surgery, NorthShore University HealthSystem Cardiovascular InstituteStudy

Technology used to keep astronauts cool in their spacesuits and protect our soldiers from brain injuries on the battlefield is now being used on heart patients. The idea is to induce hypothermia in the head during surgery to protect it.   Sources: http://www.wndu.com/home/headlines/Cooling-cap-device-helps-prevent-complications-during-heart-surgery-361317141.html BioSpace http://www.biospace.com/News/cooling-cap-device-helps-prevent-complications/402953

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Drug approvals top 2014 high but R&D returns still struggle

The number of new drugs approved in the United States this year has already topped last year’s 18-year high, yet large pharmaceutical companies are still struggling to get a decent return on their research dollars.   In fact, returns on research and development (R&D) spending by the world’s top drugmakers have fallen to just 4.2 […]

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Atara Biotherapeutics stops development of kidney drug

Atara Biotherapeutics Inc said it would stop developing its kidney drug after the treatment failed to meet the main goal of a mid-stage study. The drug developer said on Monday that the drug, PINTA 745, did not improve physical function, levels of inflammation and blood sugar in patients in the study. Atara’s shares fell nearly […]

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BTG gets triple dose of good news on new products

Specialist medicine company BTG received a triple dose of good news on Monday as U.S. regulators approved two new treatments and a clinical trial of a novel lung device produced positive results. U.S. green lights for Vistogard and Lumi, for chemotherapy overdoses and tumors, and the success of PneumRx coils in severe emphysema may help […]

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Sangamo reports promising preliminary trial data on HIV drug

Sangamo BioSciences Inc reported promising preliminary data from two mid-stage studies of its experimental HIV/AIDS therapy. The studies evaluated the drug, codenamed SB-728-T, delivered using a common virus called an adenovirus. Preliminary data suggested that delivering the drug to the target using the virus was better for immune stimulation and control of viral load in […]

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After the genome, AstraZeneca taps ‘secretome’ for novel drugs

AstraZeneca is diving into the world of proteins secreted by cells – collectively known as the secretome – in the hunt for new drugs and better “cell factories” for making biotech medicines.   The so-called secretome accounts for around one third of human proteins and the idea of mapping them all follows the decoding of […]

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FDA approves Otonomy’s ear drug

Drug developer Otonomy Inc said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved its treatment for an inflammatory ear disease. The company said the antibacterial drug, Otiprio, was being tested to treat pediatric patients, with a type of middle ear infection, who were also undergoing a surgery. The pediatric patients were undergoing tympanostomy tube placement surgery, […]

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Horizon Pharma plc to Acquire Crealta Holdings LLC in All Cash Acquisition

Addition of Biologic KRYSTEXXA® (pegloticase) Expands and Diversifies Horizon’s Orphan Business; Leverages Rheumatology Expertise and Infrastructure; Transaction Is Expected to Be Immediately Accretive to Adjusted EBITDA in 2016; Conference Call Today at 8 a.m. ET to Discuss Transaction DUBLIN, IRELAND–(Marketwired – Dec 11, 2015) – Horizon Pharma plc (NASDAQ: HZNP), a biopharmaceutical company focused on […]

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Analysts Tune Their Crystal Balls to 2016 M&A Prospects, including Johnson & Johnson, Amgen, Biogen, Sanofi and Others

With the 2015 record-breaking biopharma merger-and-acquisition period about to come to an end, analysts are tuning their crystal balls to 2016. So far this year—not quite done yet—there has been $667.5 billion in healthcare mergers and acquisitions, according to Dealogic. Next year is likely to continue a trend that started, or at least accelerated, last […]

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Bayer’s Quest to Become a Major Oncology Player

Bayer AG is packing more cancer drugs into its pipeline to gain a bigger share of the almost $100 billion global market for such treatments. Known for Aspirin and the blood thinner Xarelto, Germany’s most valuable company had no cancer treatments on the market a decade ago. By the end of this one, Bayer may […]

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UK cost agency endorses Novartis heart drug for some patients

Novartis’s big new drug hope Entresto has been recommended for use in some patients with heart failure by Britain’s cost agency NICE, which said on Friday it believed the treatment was a cost-effective option.   Entresto has a list price of 1,194 pounds ($1,809) a year in Britain, or less than half the price of […]

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Optimism good for your heart, but gratitude, not so much

(Reuters Health) – After surviving a heart attack or severe blockage of blood flow to the heart, optimistic people are more likely to make healthy lifestyle changes and less likely to end up back in the hospital, a U.S. study suggests. Optimism was linked to an 8 percent lower risk of repeat hospitalizations in the […]

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Raptor plans to advance development of brain disorder drug

Raptor Pharmaceutical Corp said it plans to advance development of its brain disorder drug to a registration study, despite it failing to show statistical significance in a trial. The drug, RP103, is being evaluated in patients with Huntington’s Disease, a type of neurodegenerative genetic disorder that affects muscle coordination and leads to mental decline and […]

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Google (GOOG)’s Verily Creates New Surgical Company Verb With Johnson & Johnson (JNJ)

Only days after Google’s Life Sciences spinoff announced its new name, Verily Life Sciences, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) announced a collaboration with Verily to create an independent surgical solutions company, Verb Surgical Inc. In March 2015, JNJ’s Ethicon, Inc. (JNJ), a medical devices company, announced a strategic collaboration with Google Life Sciences. The focus of […]

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Despite Layoffs, Biogen (BIIB) in Negotiations to Take Another Huge Space in Kendall Square

Analysts are again checking the tea leaves and analyzing the stars to try and understand what Cambridge, Mass.-based Biogen, Inc. (BIIB) has in the works. Now the Boston Business Journal reports that despite the company’s plans to cut 11 percent of its workforce, it also appears to be planning to expand its Kendal Square facilities […]

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