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Rise and shine, another busy day is on the way. And a fine one it is here on the Pharmalot campus, where a shiny sun and cool breeze delightfully illuminate the sounds of snoozing mascots and chirping birds. This will be an abbreviated day for us, however, due to an excursion. Nonetheless, we are rifling through the to-do list. No doubt, you can relate. So grab a cup of stimulation as you peruse the tidbits. Hope you have a smashing day …

Carl Icahn, the billionaire investor, took a stake in Allergan and expressed support for its chief executive, Brent Saunders, the Wall Street Journal says. Icahn did not disclose the size of his position, but said it was large. Allergan stock has fallen 25 percent this year after its merger with Pfizer, which was designed to cut taxes, collapsed. Four years ago, Icahn helped force out the CEO at Forest Labs, where Saunders was a director and later ran the company.

Bristol-Myers Squibb will provide its Opdivo medicine to lung cancer patients in Ireland at no charge for another month while the government decides whether to issue approval, the Irish Times writes. The drug was rejected due to cost effectiveness by the National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics, but the drug maker says it has since submitted a revised pricing proposal.


BioMarin Pharmaceutical is abandoning development of an experimental treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy and three other related products, Xconomy notes. The decision comes after European regulators recently indicated that approval was unlikely and the US Food and Drug Administration rejected a marketing application earlier this year.

Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen unit blasted a draft decision by the UK’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence that rejected funding for its Imbruvica drug for chronic lymphocytic leukemia, Pharma Times tells us. The agency asked the company to make a case for including its medicine on the Cancer Drugs Fund while additional data is collected.


Pfizer is running a new TV ad highlighting the science behind its medicines, but doesn’t mention any specific disease or drug. “I hope the more information we provide, the transparency we have, the interactions that we seek that those experiences with us as an industry will improve the overall view of what we do,” Pfizer’s chief medical officer, Dr. Freda Lewis-Hall, tells Business Insider.

Intercept Pharmaceuticals received accelerated approval from the FDA for a drug to treat chronic liver disease, which will cost $69,350 annually, according to MarketWatch.

The FDA rejected an application from Teva Pharmaceutical and asked for more information on a drug being developed to treat Huntington’s disease symptoms, the Philadelphia Business Journal writes.

The US Supreme Court rejected a bid by Merck’s Cubist Pharmaceuticals to revive four patents on its Cubicin antibiotic, paving the way for Hospira to sell a generic version, Reuters informs us.

Daiichi Sankyo ended a late-stage clinical trial of a lung cancer treatment after an interim analysis indicated there was no evidence of effectiveness, PMLive reports.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals will host a conference call on June 7 to discuss first-quarter results and file its quarterly report with regulators on or before June 10, ahead of a July 31 deadline, Reuters writes.

The pharmaceutical industry faces an intensive period of mergers and acquisitions in coming years, according to BusinessDay Live, citing pontifications by the EY consulting firm.

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