We took a rare break late this afternoon to watch one of the short people play Little League baseball. And so we apologize for the late hour in which we are bringing a few closing items. Nonetheless, these are of sufficient interest to warrant a look and, well, why hold back? Meanwhile, have a good night and see you in the morning...
Schering-Plough is at it again. Changes were made to yet another Vytorin study. As Matt Herper at Forbes writes, the start date for the Improve-It trial, which could determine whether the cholesterol pill prevents heart attacks, strokes and deaths, was moved to October 2005 from February 2006. The change, which appears on ClinicalTrials.gov, was made to reflect when patient dosing began, a Schering-Plough spokesman told Herper. This comes less than a week after the completion of the Improve-It trial was pushed back to at least 2012.
Glaxo won FDA approval for its Rotarix vaccine against rotavirus, which kills hundreds of thousands of children in the developing world. The approval is welcome news for Glaxo, which announced worldwide layoffs last year after its second-leading seller, the Avandia diabetes pill, was linked to heart attacks. But the firm's new vaccine faces stiff competition from Merck's Rotateq, which generated $525 million in sales last year. Leonard Friedland, Glaxo's senior director in pediatric vaccines research, tells The Philadelphia Inquirer that Rotarix has an advantage because it can be given in two doses, rather than three for Merck's Rotateq. Merck execs counter that their vaccine is easier to administer.
Pfizer ceo Jeff Kindler will will receive the Light on the Hill Award on Friday from Tufts alumni in recognition of his achievements in active citizenship and corporate social responsibility. The award is the highest honor that the undergraduate student body bestows on Tufts alumni, according to Jonathan Kaplan, associate director of alumni relations, who called Kindler "an easy choice" to receive the award. The prize, he tells The Tufts Daily, seeks to recognize "alumni who have really made their mark in the world and who have achieved great things and who are also representative of the core values of the university...He has achieved great things professionally. He's a responsible, active citizen, and even in his job as a CEO, he makes sure he gives back to Tufts - he gives back to his community." Jeff, by the way, was Class of '77.