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  • As I begin my vacation, I wanted to tell you about a story I did that's airing while I'm away on the new edition of CNBC's "Business Nation" this Wednesday (November 7th) at 9 p and midnight ET. It's about the increasingly strained relationship between drug sales reps and doctors.

  • Pharma Stocks To Watch On Monday (And My Time Off) Sunday, 4 Nov 2007 | 12:57 PM ET

    I'm taking some much needed time off for a couple of weeks. Actually, our scheduling guru at CNBC, Alex Crippen, told me if I don't use all of the days I've accumulated by the end of next month, I'll lose them. I consider myself a hard worker, but I'm not that generous. So, off I go.

  • Vertex In The "Vortex" Over Hepatitis C Test Results Friday, 2 Nov 2007 | 12:04 PM ET
    Vertex

    There's a flurry of selling going on this morning in shares of the biopharma Vertex Pharmaceuticals. Overnight the embargo lifted on the long awaited results of the company's mid-stage test on a new type of Hepatitis C drug. Two studies show that six months out 60% and 65% of patients had no detectable virus in their blood.

  • Zocor

    This morning we got more evidence about the havoc generic Zocor is wreaking on all of the companies that make brand-name statins--the pills to fight cholesterol. AstraZeneca is the latest casualty. On a down day in the markets AZN is one of the biggest losers in the sector.

  • Genentech's Avastin: An "Eye Opening" Disclosure? Thursday, 1 Nov 2007 | 9:44 AM ET

    Yet another chapter in the unfolding saga of Genentech's Avastin being used instead of Lucentis to treat age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The other day I blogged about the new "Open Letter" on the company's homepage announcing that it's delaying the implementation of its attempted crackdown on the cheaper, similar cancer drug being used...

  • Eli Lilly: Will They Get Lucky With 'One A Day' Cialis? Wednesday, 31 Oct 2007 | 3:36 PM ET
    Eli Lilly

    Today's the day Eli Lilly was expected to get a Food and Drug Administration decision on the first-ever one-a-day impotence drug. Right now, the company sells Cialis for use as needed. But men could pop this one every day--like an aspirin or multi-vitamin--so the drug would always be "on boa

  • Amylin's Once A Week Byetta: Good Is Not Enough Wednesday, 31 Oct 2007 | 12:21 PM ET
    Byetta Needle

    This morning Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Eli Lilly and Alkermes announced the highly anticipated test results on their once-a-week, Type 2 diabetes drug. One analyst recently called this the most important biotech data of the second half of this year. Many expect the drug to become a multi-billion dollar blockbuster.

  • Genentech "Sees The Light" On Avastin? Tuesday, 30 Oct 2007 | 1:05 PM ET

    In a remarkably candid "Open Letter" on the homepage of its web site Genentech is taking a step back from implementing its new restrictive policy over the use of the cancer drug Avastin in lieu of Lucentis for age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of adult blindness. I had recently blogged about the company's action and angry reader response to it.

  • ASCO: 'Open Door Policy' Levels Playing Field Monday, 29 Oct 2007 | 3:37 PM ET

    TheStreet.com's senior biotech writer Adam Feuerstein broke this story earlier today, but now we've confirmed it independently. The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is changing its ways.

  • Lipitor

    Pfizer has been using Dr. Robert Jarvik, the inventor of the Jarvik Artificial Heart, for quite some time now as its Lipitor "celebrity" pitchman. But recently I've noticed something remarkable creeping into his copy--the script he reads for TV and radio spots and the text that appears in the print ads.

  • Merck, Sanofi, Glaxo Get "Shot In The Arm" From U.K. Friday, 26 Oct 2007 | 12:52 PM ET

    British health authorities today announced that starting next fall, all 12- and 13-year-old girls will have to get the controversial shots to prevent the sexually transmitted virus that can lead to cervical cancer. Merck and Sanofi-Aventis are partners on the vaccine Gardasil and the UK-based GlaxoSmithKline makes a similar one Cervarix.

  • Eli Lilly: "Bloom" Is Off The Pipeline Thursday, 25 Oct 2007 | 11:43 AM ET
    Eli Lilly

    If the stock closes down at least 4.46% today (as I write this it is off nearly 7%) Eli Lilly will suffer its worst one-day loss in more than four years, according to our resident statistical expert Robert Hum. If it were to close off more than 7.79%, Hum says it would be the stock's biggest one-day fall since Oct. 23, 2002--almost five years to the day.

  • Glaxo's Avandia Nose Dive: What It Means Wednesday, 24 Oct 2007 | 11:48 AM ET

    Shares in the world's second biggest drug company, GlaxoSmithKline, are giving back all of yesterday's gains in early trading this morning. That's because sales of its embattled diabetes drug, Avandia and other Avandia-related products took a huge dive in the third quarter. Down 48% in the U.S. from the same time last year.

  • Dendreon's Provenge Trial: Big Step On Bumpy Road Tuesday, 23 Oct 2007 | 2:58 PM ET

    It isn't moving the stock, but Dendreon this morning announced that it has signed up all of the patients for the big clinical trial that could lead to its prostate cancer drug, Provenge, winning Food and Drug Administration approval. The completion of enrollment was not unexpected, so that's why people aren't trading on the news.

  • Genentech And Readers Not Seeing Eye To Eye Friday, 19 Oct 2007 | 8:04 AM ET

    My recent posts on Genentech trying to crack down on doctors using its cheaper cancer drug Avastin instead of the more expensive Lucentis to treat patients with age-related macular degeneration--elicited a lot of emails from readers all over the world.

  • Pfizer "Chokes" on Inhaled Diabetic Insulin Thursday, 18 Oct 2007 | 11:29 AM ET
    Exubera

    Just months after launching what was hailed as a revolutionary new product, Pfizer is taking it off the market. And it has nothing to do with safety. It has everything to do with sales--or the lack, thereof. The world's biggest drug company only recently started direct-to-consumer advertising for Exubera, but it apparently didn't work.

  • Gilead: Has Bird Flu Fighter Tamiflu "Sickened" Stock? Wednesday, 17 Oct 2007 | 12:37 PM ET

    There was a time within the past couple of years that it seemed you couldn't open a major newspaper or watch a TV news program without seeing a story about the bird flu and Tamiflu--the antiviral medicine from Roche and Gilead Sciences. GILD invented the drug and later sold rights to Roche which pays GILD a royalty on sales.

  • JNJ, Genentech: What's Ailing Them (And Their Stock) Tuesday, 16 Oct 2007 | 11:44 AM ET

    If you saw the headline, you would've thought that Johnson and Johnson might help power the Dow today. The hybrid pharmaceutical, medical device and consumer healthcare products company handily beat the Street and raised its guidance for the year.

  • Genentech: What's Really Behind The Earnings Monday, 15 Oct 2007 | 5:02 PM ET

    Late last week, I blogged about keeping an eye on the Lucentis sales number when Genentech reports earnings. Well, the company is just out with its release and, sure enough, revenue from the drug for age-related macular degeneration (AMD) fell sequentially from the second quarter to the third quarter.

  • Alzheimer's Blood Test: Would You Take It? Monday, 15 Oct 2007 | 1:52 PM ET
    Cat scan image of human brain

    This morning on "Squawk Box" and "Squawk on the Street" I reported on a new study showing that a simple blood test might predict whether you will develop Alzheimer's Disease. The report, which appears in the scientific, peer-reviewed journal "Nature Medicine...