Good morning, everyone, and welcome to another working week. We hope the weekend respite was refreshing and relaxing. Ours was rather soggy, actually. Nonetheless, it is time to look ahead now that the familiar routine of meetings and deadlines and whatnot has returned. So please join us for a cup of stimulation as we brace ourselves for the tasks ahead. As always, here are some tidbits to help you along. Have a smashing day and do keep in touch …
Sixty-three young women in Japan are seeking a combined $9 million in compensation in the first class-action lawsuit concerning side effects from HPV vaccines, the Asahi Shimbun writes. The women, who are 15 to 22 years old, are suing the central government, as well as Merck and GlaxoSmithKline, and argue they experienced pain in various parts of their bodies, difficulty in walking, and impaired eyesight as a result of taking the vaccines.
As Valeant Pharmaceuticals tries to shed it reliance on price hikes, an obscure but crucial source of cash that was directly linked to its pricing practices may disappear, the New York Times writes. Known as price appreciation credits, these were received from wholesalers in response to price increases and greatly bolstered its cash flow. The credits demonstrate the drug maker was much more reliant on price increases than most investors probably knew.
Doctors Without Borders is battling Pfizer in an Indian court over a patent for the Prevnar13 pneumococcal vaccine, the Economic Times reports. The relief organization is arguing that the patent lacks originality and, moreover, granting the patent would prevent children in several developing countries from accessing the life-saving vaccine.
Two small drug makers are undergoing relatively large job cuts. Tokai Pharmaceuticals is reducing its workforce by about 60 percent, to a total of 10 employees, after a prostate cancer drug trial was discontinued last week. And NewLink Genetics is laying off 100 workers, or slightly less than half its staff, after one of its pancreatic cancer treatment candidates failed in its third round of trials.
The US Food and Drug Administration placed a Shire drug for treating nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, or NASH, with liver fibrosis, on a fast track for regulatory approval, PharmaPhorum reports.
An Indian court ruled that Sun Pharmaceutical adopted unfair labor practices by holding back salaries of 86 sales reps since May after they protested planned changes in work conditions, the Economic Times writes.
Biogen will pay $75 million to Ionis Pharmaceuticals to exercise an option to develop and commercialize an experimental genetic muscle-disorder drug, Reuters reports.
Merck won a cease-and-desist order against a law firm that allegedly made misleading statements to potential plaintiffs concerning a gender discrimination lawsuit, the New Jersey Law Journal says.