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And so, another working week will soon draw to a close. Not a moment too soon, yes? This is, as you know, our treasured signal to daydream about weekend plans. Our agenda is largely occupied by retrieving one of our short people from a tower of learning. And what about you? This is a marvelous time to tidy up around the castle or manicure your own campus. You could also enjoy the great outdoors. Or simply plan the rest of your life. Whatever you do, we hope you have a grand time. But be safe. Enjoy and see you soon.

Medivation has rejected the $9.3 billion offer from Sanofi, saying the $52.50-a-share bid “substantially undervalues” the company. For instance, Medivation says the Sanofi offer is 21 percent below the 52-week high of $66.40 at which Medivation stock traded. Moreover, Medivation has “significant scarcity value as one of the few profitable, commercial-stage oncology companies, according to its statement. For its part, Sanofi took umbrage at the rejection. The question now is how much higher will Sanofi go and will another bidder emerge?

AstraZenca plans to cut costs by $1 billion and increase its focus on cancer treatments after underlying earnings, hit by patent expirations on big-selling drugs, fell 12 percent in the first quarter, Reuters writes. The drug maker expects to increase spending on oncology, while cutting commercial and manufacturing operations. The number of job losses were not specified, but will be outside of the UK, where the company is based.


AbbVie agreed to pay $5.8 billion for Stemcentrx and its experimental treatment for small cell lung cancer, which accounts for up to 15 percent of all lung cancers, Reuters reports. The move is part of an effort to lessen dependence on its Humira rheumatoid arthritis medication, a $14 billion seller, and expand into oncology. Last year, AbbVie paid $21 billion for Pharmacyclics and its half-ownership in Imbruvica, a treatment for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

More than one-third of hip implants made by Johnson & Johnson’s DePuy unit were the wrong size and have may have played a “significant role” in failed hip replacements, The Telegraph writes, citing new research in the British Medical Journal Open. Known as the Pinnacle, the device is the most commonly used metal-on-metal implant in the world and has been used for more than 180,000 people.


Now that Gilead Sciences posted disappointing quarterly earnings, Wall Street wags say the drug maker must make a transition from relying on consistently strong cash flows from its blockbuster hepatitis C treatments to newer medicines in different therapeutic areas. Although more new patients are being prescribed its hepatitis C drugs, Gilead suffered as payers forced pricing down by about 10 percent.

Semler Research Center is confident it can satisfy US Food and Drug Administration and World Health Organization concerns about the integrity of clinical trials it conducted, PharmaBiz reports. Last week, the FDA alerted drug makers that marketing applications containing trial data prepared by the contract research organization would not be accepted. That followed a notice of concern issued by the WHO, which found numerous problems during an inspection.

Xellia Pharmaceuticals and the FDA reached an agreement to modify a consent decree and allow the Danish drug maker to use the former Ben Venue Laboratories, Crain’s Cleveland Business says. The plant was closed at the end of 2013, after Ben Venue, a unit of Boehringer Ingelheim, spent years and hundreds of millions of dollars trying to fix quality-control problems identified by regulators.

The UK’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommended a therapy that combines two Novartis drugs — Tafinlar and Mekinist — to treat a form of metastatic melanoma, Pharma Times writes.