Rise and shine. The middle of the week is upon us. However, this will be an abbreviated work week, as you know, given the upcoming holiday. In fact, we are about to check out for the next several days to enjoy some time with our short people and catch up on life. We hope you get to do the same. We will miss you, of course, but will return soon enough. Meanwhile, here are some tidbits. Hope you all have a wonderful holiday break and see you soon …
Turing Pharmaceuticals is laying off an unspecified number of employees and searching for a permanent chief executive, just days after Martin Shkreli resigned following his arrest for securities fraud. He was replaced on an interim basis by Ron Tilles, although Fortune writes there are questions about his work record. Shkreli caused an uproar for raising the price of a decades-old, life-saving medicine by 5,000 percent and thwarting generics.
Another spat is breaking out over drug prices as Catalyst Pharmaceuticals hopes to win regulatory approval to sell a treatment for an autoimmune disorder with a cost ranging from $37,500 to $100,000, NPR reports. But an existing version has been provided at virtually no cost by another drug maker, and doctors are concerned that patients will suffer because Catalyst is hoping to win market exclusivity under the Orphan Drug Act.
Celgene settled patent litigation that will allow Natco Pharma, an Indian generic drug maker, to market the best-selling Revlimid multiple myeloma treatment. The deal permits Natco and its US partner, Arrow International, to make and market a limited quantity starting in March 2022 and increase supplies through 2025. Cowen analyst Eric Schmidt believes the deal will thwart other potential generic entrants.
GlaxoSmithKline has temporarily stopped production of Ventolin HFA inhalers at a North Carolina plant while it looks into customer complaints, InPharma Technologist writes. The move comes after the drug maker recalled nearly 130,000 inhalers because some “canisters may not contain sufficient propellant to deliver the labeled claim of 200 actuations through the end of shelf life,” according to a regulatory notice.
A new deal was reached as part of the UK’s Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme in which drug makers will provide nearly $800 million next year to help the National Health Service pay for medicines, PharmaFile writes.
The Food and Drug Administration approved an AstraZeneca drug called Zurampic to treat a condition associated with gout in combination with another type of medicine, Reuters writes.
A Pennsylvania jury awarded $12.5 million in damages to a woman who claims a Johnson & Johnson vaginal mesh implant caused extreme pain during sex and required multiple corrective surgeries, The Philadelphia Inquirer says.
In another sign that diabetes competition will be fierce next year, Sanofi asked the FDA to review its one-day diabetes injection in six months, instead of the usual 10 months, Reuters says.
A New York state judge ruled that Pfizer does not owe New York University any royalties for the Xalkori lung cancer drug, writes Reuters, noting NYU sought 2.5 percent royalties under a 1991 licensing deal.
Results of the first trial for a PCSK9 inhibitor — Amgen’s Repatha — should be available in 2016, a year earlier than planned, MedPage Today says.
Orchid Pharma’s UK subsidiary reached an agreement with Line Trust International to access a loan worth up to $800 million, The Economic Times tells us.