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 somewhat unsettled, but we plan to hang with our short people and catch up on our napping. And you? The great outdoors beckons, so why not take advantage? After all, summer is racing by. You could catch up with someone special. Or for real excitement, you could find someone who wants to debate the presidential follies. Well, whatever you do, have a grand time, but be safe. See you soon …

Neo-Viagra, which is made by the state-owned Korea Oriental Instant Medicinal Center, is being marketed in North Korea as an “herbal medicine,” but a lab test found it contains the same active ingredient as the real Viagra, the Washington Post discovers. Pfizer is “currently reviewing” whether to take any action against the North Korean manufacturers for patent or copyright infringement.

Gilead Sciences (GILD) is entitled to receive attorney fees incurred in patent litigation with Merck over hepatitis C drugs, according to this ruling by a US District Court judge. In June, Gilead was freed from paying up $200 to million in damages for infringing two Merck patents related to Gilead’s Sovaldi and Harvoni after the same judge determined that Merck displayed a “pervasive pattern of misconduct,” including lying under oath.

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An international arbitration order details how Ranbaxy Laboratories “deliberately” buried information to dupe its new owners, the Indian Express reports. The order includes information allegedly implicating the Singh family in a slew of irregularities as they sold the drug maker to Daiichi Sankyo. In 2013, Ranbaxy paid a $500 million fine and pleaded guilty to violating US drug safety laws. Last May, the Singhs were ordered to pay $400 million in damages.

The US Preventive Services Task Force says there is not enough evidence to recommend all children should have blood tests to check for high levels of lipids, according to Reuters.

A researcher at the Tulane School of Medicine is attempting to engineer a new kind of painkiller without the side effects often caused by opioids, MIT Technology Review tells us.

The UK’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommended long-term use of AstraZeneca’s (AZN) Brilinta blood thinner as a cost-effective option for treating patients after a heart attack, Reuters says.

Worldwide prescription drug sales are forecast to reach almost $1 trillion by 2020, with a compounded annual growth rate of 4.8 percent, according to Evaluate Pharma.

Allergan (AGN) is paying $95 million for ForSight Vision, which makes drug-eluting ophthalmological implants, according to Pharmaphorum.

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  • Washington Post investigative reporting on brown granules of a male enhancer. Not exactly Woodward and Bernstein type material. Those guys would never have reported it anyway since they would have told Bradlee that the Korean patent on Viagra expired in 2013 and they deliberately formulated the product as such in order to get around Pfizer’s 3D patent on the Viagra trade dress (little blue pill). No evidence that the product was actually exported. Pfizer has a laughable history with trademark registrations. They didn’t even name the product correctly in Chinese language and then wondered why people weren’t buying a product that Pfizer had named incorrectly. Google translator gets you only so far.

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