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Hello, everyone, and welcome to the middle of the week. You made it this far, so why not celebrate with a nice cup of stimulation? Remember, no prescription is required. Meanwhile, another busy day is already underway and shows no sign of slowing down. So time to get cracking. As always, we have assembled a few items of interest to help you along. Hope your day goes well and, of course, do keep in touch. We appreciate tips and insights …

Martin Shkreli may face additional charges of securities fraud concerning his involvement with Retrophin, a drug company that he ran before heading Turing Pharmaceuticals, Reuters reports. At a federal court hearing in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Tuesday, a prosecutor said the added charges could be filed within a month.

The US Food and Drug Administration warned of rare cases in which patients taking the Abilify antipsychotic pill experienced uncontrollable urges to gamble, binge eat, shop and engage in sex, STAT tells us. The drug was approved 13 years ago and, since then, only 167 reports of significant impulse-control problems were reported. In the United States, 1.6 million patients received Abilify prescriptions last year.


IMS Health, the market research firm that tracks prescriptions and medical claims, and Quintiles, the contract research organization, plan to merge in an $8.75 billion deal, Bloomberg News reports. In explaining the move, companies claim the combination will create an expanded pool of information for drug makers, which are under pressure to limit costs, and improve the ability to efficiently run clinical research.

Pfizer is considering a bid for Medivation, which last week spurned a $9.3 billion offer from Sanofi, Reuters tells us. Medivation jointly markets the hot-selling Xtandi prostate cancer treatment and is seen as desirable takeover bait for big drug makers trying to build their cancer portfolios. Pfizer, meanwhile, is coming off the scuttled $160 billion plan to acquire Allergan, which was designed to lower its tax bill, since Allergan is domiciled in Ireland.


A new study finds that shortages of many drugs that are essential in emergency care have increased in recent years even as shortages for drugs for non-acute or chronic care have eased, NPR tells us.

Johnson & Johnson is appealing two recent jury verdicts that awarded a total of $127 million to women who blame their ovarian cancer on talc in the company’s baby powder, the Wall Street Journal writes.

The FDA issued a revised version of its draft guidance for hepatitis C treatments that tells companies to conduct head-to-head Phase 3 studies for drugs in development, Regulatory Focus says.