Aug 1- Express Scripts Holding Co, the largest U.S. pharmacy benefit manager, on Friday said it will remove 25 products from its 2015 list of preferred drugs, including anemia treatments Epogen and Aranesp, both sold by Amgen Inc..» Read More
Pfizer put out a press release this morning announcing that it has added another office in the C-Suite. The world's biggest drug company has hired a CTO. What's a CTO, you ask?? Well, it doesn't stand for what you might guess--Chief Technology Officer. Nope, Pfizer has created the position of Chief Talent Officer.
This week it's 25 years since the first of seven people in Chicagoland died after taking Tylenol laced with cyanide. The scare led to new industry-standard, tamper-resistant over-the-counter drug packaging and became an enduring textbook case for corporate crisis management.
Team Biotech at the boutique firm of Rodman & Renshaw is picking up coverage today of the highly controversial therapeutic cancer vaccine space. In a 330-page research packet for clients analyst Ren Benjamin provides a nearly 200-page primer on the technology and then individual notes on four therapeutic cancer vaccine companies.
The Dow is sitting at a new high and you could argue that the move in the pharmaceuticals sector today is largely market related with Dow components Merck, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson all trading up. As I write this the biggest dollar gainer in the group is Eli Lilly. But the largest percentage gainer is Schering-Plough.
Everyone's favorite biotech--investors seem to either love it or hate it--was one of the presenters this morning at the UBS Global Life Sciences Conference in New York City. CEO Dr. Mitchell Gold once again did the honors. Generally speaking, biotech investors focus on milestones or key events in drug development.
A couple of days home sick with daytime television as your nursemaid can tell you a lot about the current state of multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical advertising. Yeah, we all know it's ubiquitous, but there are at least a couple of noticeable new players and an older one hitting the airwaves.
Right on the heels of my previous blog entry about an analyst saying a Medicare reconsideration of its anemia drug reimbursement policy may be in the offing comes this news out of the agency.
After being down about half-a-dollar in early trading, volatile shares of Amgen are trimming their loses and heading back into positive territory at this writing. That turnaround could be from the dissemination of a research note from Wachovia biotech analyst George Farmer.
It's relatively lightly traded and it's a very small market cap (under $500 million), but shares of Sirtris Pharmaceuticals are sitting at a new high in the early going today. The stock has had a very nice move since the end of June when it was trading for less than 10 bucks. Today, it's over $15.
BioCryst Pharmaceuticals drew the short straw, er, needle. The biotech company says a majority of patients in a mid-stage clinical trial of its experimental seasonal and pandemic flu antiviral Peramivir got the drug using too short of an injection needle.
I'm fully aware that this story actually broke yesterday, and was picked up by a couple of competitors, but after receiving today's morning research note from Miller Tabak healthcare analyst Les Funtleyder, I couldn't resist writing this post.
Because it's so extraordinarily rare--if not unheard of--for one analyst to publish research specifically to refute another analyst I thought this is blogworthy. Last Friday, FBR biotech analyst Jim Reddoch told clients in a research note that he was downgrading ImClone Systems to Market Perform in the wake of the robust data released last week on Erbitux...
Recently I blogged about the hiring of a new CEO at ImClone Systems and the unique clause in his contract requiring him to buy half-a-million dollars worth of stock in the company. My suspicion was that ImClone Chairman and billionaire shareholder Carl Icahn had a hand in that.
Yesterday, I blogged that messages to each of David Maris' lawyers seeking comment on Biovail "dropping" or "settling" its case against the former Bank of America Securities analyst had gone without a response. Well, this morning I got this email from one of his attorneys tossing the ball back in Biovail's court:
So, I thought I'd be spending today monitoring the webcast of the FDA Advisory Committees that are meeting to decide whether doctors should use less of the anemia drugs from Amgen and Johnson & Johnson to treat kidney dialysis patients.
Call it a stellar, mythic merger. This morning Isis Pharmaceuticals (named after the goddess in Egyptian mythology) and Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (named after the center star in Orion's belt) announced they're forming a joint venture called Regulus Therapeutics, LLC (named after the brightest star in the constellation Leo). I'm sensing a theme here.
An update from the NewsMakers in Biotech conference in NYC on an item of intense interest. Amylin Pharmaceuticals just held a well-attended PowerPoint presentation followed by a very cramped breakout session. And pretty much the only thing investors and analysts wanted to talk about is Byetta LAR (long-acting release).
Blogging from the 14th NewsMakers in the Biotech Industry conference put on by BioCentury and Thomson Financial in Manhattan. It's a rare opportunity to spend a day getting possible story ideas and networking with sources.
The gloves are off. Overnight, Pfizer came out with a new study on the world's top-selling drug, Lipitor, for cholesterol. The company says if you switch from its drug to generic Zocor you've got a 30% greater chance of dying from a heart attack, stroke or some other "major cardiovascular" event.
I'll be out of the office for an extra-long holiday weekend, so I'm emptying out the blog inbox before I go. Nick Stavriotis sent an email to clarify his previous incomplete statement regarding the FDA's "overrule" of the Dendreon Provenge advisory committee recommendation: "...my words should have said 'refusal to follow an overwhelming...