Hello, everyone, and how are you today? The middle of the week has arrived, of course, and this calls for a celebratory cup of stimulation, since we have somehow made it this far. We trust you relate and invite you to join us. As always, there is much to be done, so time to get cracking. Once again, we have assembled a few items of interest to help you along. So please dig in. Meanwhile, hope you conquer the world today and do keep in touch …
A US Food and Drug Administration advisory committee recommended approval of a biosimilar version of Remicade, a best-selling Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) arthritis treatment, but patent litigation may complicate its arrival in the marketplace, The Wall Street Journal reports. In general, drug makers are taking out new patents to extend their monopolies and, therefore, delay the arrival of lower-cost biosimilar competition.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating whether Salix Pharmaceuticals executives misled investors concerning disclosures in 2014 that inventory levels were higher than previously reported, Reuters writes. Valeant Pharmaceuticals, which acquired Salix last year, previously disclosed an SEC probe into the episode involving former Salix chief executive Carolyn Logan and former chief financial officer Adam Derbyshire.
New guidelines from the Medical Council of India can be circumvented and allow doctors to accept freebies if at least seven physicians form an association, because such groups are allowed to accept payment from the pharmaceutical industry, The Economic Times tells us. “This is a national shame,” said Dr G S Grewal, president of the Punjab Medical Council. “It is plain and simple legalizing of corruption.”
The US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services may change the way Medicare pays doctors for cancer drugs and other medications they administer to patients in their offices, Bloomberg News writes.
The US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions approved seven medical innovation bills as part of its piecemeal approach to passing its version of the 21st Century Cures Act, STAT reports.
Hikma Pharmaceuticals cut the cash portion of its offer for Boehringer Ingelheim’s generic drug business by nearly half due to lower-than-expected sales last year and uncertainty about sales this year, The New York Times says.
Northwest Biotherapeutics last fall blamed short sellers for a big drop in its stock price, but the real reason was comments made by a principal investigator in its own trial, TheStreet informs us.
Merck filed an application with the FDA for approval of a pill that would target house dust mites, which are a common cause of allergies, Pharma Times writes.