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FDA staff says AcelRx opioid painkiller is not better than rivals

AcelRx Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s opioid painkiller offers no apparent advantage to currently available therapies, staff reviewers of the U.S. Food and Administration said.

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HIV Treatments That Could Make Redfield’s Prediction a Reality to Defeat AIDS Epidemic

Dr. Robert Redfield, the new head of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, boldly predicted in April 2018 that the AIDS epidemic can be defeated by 2025. Merck, Janssen and Gilead Sciences all released clinical data for HIV treatments that could make Redfield’s prediction a reality.

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Bayer Cutting More Than 200 Jobs in San Francisco Bay Area

German company Bayer AG is laying off 227 staffers at the company’s manufacturing plant in Berkeley, California. Most of the cuts took place on October 3, 2018.

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Fund gives J&J, Oxford experts $19 million to fight deadly viruses

A global coalition set up to fight emerging epidemics will give $19 million to drugmaker Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine unit and Oxford University experts to work on immunizations against three major diseases.

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Post-op opioids used far more in U.S. than Hong Kong

Head and neck surgery patients in Hong Kong are far less likely to be prescribed opioids than patients undergoing similar surgeries in the U.S., new research shows.

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Orexo soars after winning opioid drug appeal against Teva

A U.S. appeals court revived Swedish pharmaceutical company Orexo AB’s lawsuit accusing a unit of Israel’s Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. of infringing a patent for the opioid addiction drug Zubsolv.

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Consort, Opiant to develop nasal spray for opioid overdose treatment

Britain’s Consort Medical Plc agreed to develop a nasal spray for treating opioid overdoses with specialty pharmaceutical company Opiant Pharmaceuticals Inc.

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Maryland charges Insys with engaging in deceptive opioid scheme

Maryland charged Insys Therapeutics Inc. with deceptively marketing a powerful opioid pain killer so that it was prescribed inappropriately beyond its intended use with cancer patients.

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Emergent BioSolutions to buy Narcan maker Adapt Pharma

Emergent BioSolutions will buy privately held Adapt Pharma, beefing up its portfolio with Narcan, the only FDA-approved needle-free emergency opioid overdose treatment.

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New York sues OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma

New York state sued Purdue Pharma LP, accusing the OxyContin maker of widespread fraud and deception in the marketing of opioids, and contributing to a nationwide epidemic.

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FDA declines to approve Pain Therapeutics’ opioid drug

The U.S. FDA declined to approve Pain Therapeutics Inc.’s abuse-deterrent opioid treatment Remoxy for the fourth time.

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Pfizer-Lilly pain drug meets late-stage trial goals

An experimental osteoarthritis drug developed by Pfizer Inc. and Eli Lilly and Co. achieved its main goal of lowering pain in a late-stage clinical trial.

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U.S. approves first marijuana plant-derived drug

GW Pharmaceuticals Plc’s epilepsy treatment Epidiolex secured FDA marketing clearance, becoming the first cannabis-based drug to be approved in the United States.

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China says United States domestic opioid market the crux of crisis

China’s drug control agency on Monday said the United States should do more to cut its demand for opioids to tackle the use of the synthetic drug fentanyl, but it vowed to step up cooperation after Chinese production of the substance was blamed for fueling the U.S. opioid crisis.

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OxyContin Maker Purdue Pharma to Cut 350 More Jobs

Purdue Pharma, which sells the painkiller OxyContin, announced that the company laid off approximately 350 staffers.

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New research points to universal antibody drug for HIV

AIDS researchers in Hong Kong say new research – tested on mice – indicates a functional cure for HIV, eventually leading to a new antibody that could be used for prevention and treatment.

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Kentucky sues Walgreens Boots Alliance

Kentucky’s attorney general sued Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc., accusing the company of playing a role in propagating an opioid epidemic in the state.

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‘We are still at war’ with Ebola: WHO chief

The head of the World Health Organization cautioned against declaring victory too early in Congo’s Ebola epidemic, despite encouraging signs that it may be brought under control.

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Nektar Therapeutics’ Big Week: Syndax Cancer Collaboration and New Opioid Submission

Nektar Therapeutics announced the submission of a New Drug Application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the new molecular entity NKTR-181, a mu-opioid agonist for pain relief. The company also inked a non-exclusive clinical collaboration deal with Syndax Pharmaceuticals to develop Nektar’s NKTR-214, a CD122-biased agonist in combination with entinostat, Syndax’s HDAC inhibitor in metastatic melanoma.

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U.S. biotechs to speed work on Nipah vaccine as virus hits India

A global coalition set up during 2017 to fight epidemics has struck a $25 million deal with two U.S. biotech companies to accelerate work on a vaccine against the brain-damaging Nipah virus that has killed 12 people in India.

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