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Pharmaceuticals

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  • AstraZeneca is stopping a clinical trial of its blockbuster cholesterol fighter Crestor early because of the clear benefits of the medicine compared to placebo, the company said on Monday.

  • Yoda

    Yoda made an appearance at the American College of Cardiology (ACC) conference here in Chicago on Sunday. At the end of his speech in the opening session, the outgoing president of the organization played a "Star Wars" clip with the sage saying, "Try not. Do or do not. There is no try." He was trying to make a point about the ACC's role in forging healthcare reform.

  • Vytorin Expert Panel Says 'Go Back to Statins' Sunday, 30 Mar 2008 | 8:18 PM ET

    In the absence of evidence that the cholesterol fighter Vytorin works better than a cheaper drug known as a statin, patients should turn back to using statins and other proven drugs, an expert panel said on Sunday.

  • The Little Biotech That Could Friday, 28 Mar 2008 | 6:44 PM ET

    AMAG Pharma has a drug that could be a "game changer," Cramer says. Find out how.

  • Gameplan: Earnings Defense Friday, 28 Mar 2008 | 6:42 PM ET

    Earnings season is coming but it doesn't look good, Cramer says. Here's how to play the next five weeks of reports.

  • Vytorin Heart Study Expanded; Results Delayed Friday, 28 Mar 2008 | 5:30 PM ET

    U.S. researchers said on Friday they plan to expand the size of a major study to determine the heart benefits of the controversial cholesterol fighter Vytorin, which they said would delay results until 2012.

  • I don't know how I missed this one, but the Wall Street Journal's Health Blog didn't forget that this week that Pfizer and, perhaps, some men and women are celebrating the tenth birthday of Viagra. So, happy birthday little blue pill.

  • When I heard a soundbite with Sen. Hillary Clinton on CNBC's "Kudlow & Company" last night, it reminded me to check and see if the Center for Responsive Politics had updated its monthly campaign contribution data.

  • Market-Moving Murmurs Thursday, 27 Mar 2008 | 6:30 PM ET

    The American College Of Cardiology kicks off its annual meeting in Chicago on Saturday. What’s the trade ahead of this major meeting of heart doctors?

  • Biovail's Travails Drag "60 Minutes" Into Controversy Thursday, 27 Mar 2008 | 4:09 PM ET
    BIOVAIL

    The Columbia Journalism Review, the pre-eminent publication and authority on what we in the business refer to as "The Big J"--as in Journalism--is calling out CBS' "60 Minutes" in an article just posted on the web with the somewhat explosive headline, "60 Minutes Blows Biovail Story."

  • J&J, Boston Scientific, Medtronic & Abbott: Stent "Stuff" Thursday, 27 Mar 2008 | 10:50 AM ET
    Heart Stent

    Ahead of the world's biggest gathering of cardiologists in Chicago this weekend, there's a flurry of news about stents--the expensive little wire mesh tubes that prop open clogged arteries. First, the Food and Drug Administration has posted new proposed guidelines for pre-and post-market testing of the controversial devices.

  • Bear Stearns' Amgen Call  Brings On More Gallows Humor Wednesday, 26 Mar 2008 | 1:16 PM ET

    This morning, Bear Stearns biotech analyst Mark Schoenebaum and a couple of members of his research team hosted a conference call with a 50-page PowerPoint about Amgen. The purpose was to drill down into the looming court decision over whether Roche will be able to launch a competing anemia drug in the U.S. for kidney dialysis patients.

  • Big Pharma Power Shift: CFOs May Have The Mojo Now Wednesday, 26 Mar 2008 | 11:01 AM ET

    Big pharma CEOs might wanna watch their backs because there could be a burgeoning power struggle in the C-suite. Ernst & Young, which has a long history of doing comprehensive reports on the pharmaceutical and biotech industries, is out with a new one today declaring that it's big pharma Chief Financial Officers who have all the mojo these days.

  • FDA's Internet Facelift Still A Work In Progress Tuesday, 25 Mar 2008 | 4:47 PM ET
    FDA

    If you haven't seen it yet, check out the new homepage of the Food and Drug Administration web site www.fda.gov. The agency unveiled it the other day. The interior of the web site still looks pretty much the same.

  • J&J, Merck & Wyeth Tops in Big Pharma CEO Pay Tuesday, 25 Mar 2008 | 11:31 AM ET

    As proxy statements pop up on www.sec.gov, investors can get a peek at who's making what. When you go to the web site, click on "Search for company filings," then click on "Companies and other filers," enter the ticker symbol, click on "Find companies" and then open up the "14A" or proxy statement.

  • Biovail's Travails And The "Haunting" Truck Accident Monday, 24 Mar 2008 | 4:12 PM ET
    BIOVAIL

    Shares of Canada's biggest biotech initially hit a new intra-day low this morning of 10 bucks a share this morning, but rallied into the close as investors seem to like the fact that the company may have extricated itself from allegations of financial fraud.

  • Gilead Sciences "Pushes Out" Amgen As Number 2 Biotech Monday, 24 Mar 2008 | 12:40 PM ET

    Investors now think that a biotech company with less than one-third the revenue of Amgen is worth more than the former sector king. Elizabeth Trotta at TheStreet.com took note of this late last week but I thought it was worth pointing out.

  • These days there's been a lot of media attention paid to the Merck and Schering-Plough partnership on the cholesterol-fighting drugs Zetia and Vytorin. But there's another less-known and little-talked-about respiratory MRK/SGP joint venture.

  • ACC: Can It "Enhance" Merck And Schering-Plough? Wednesday, 19 Mar 2008 | 2:54 PM ET

    The American College of Cardiology held a telephone press briefing this afternoon to help get reporters up to speed on potential headline-grabbing studies that researchers will present at the annual ACC meeting in Chicago at the end of this month.

  • Merck And Big Pharma: Both Getting A Stock "Booster" Shot? Wednesday, 19 Mar 2008 | 11:14 AM ET
    Gardasil

    Merck this morning announced that it has filed for Food and Drug Administration approval of its blockbuster cervical cancer vaccine, Gardasil, for women 27-45 years old. Right now it's approved for females 9-26.