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Pharmaceuticals, health and wellness

HRA Pharma debuts one-stop hub for rare disease Cushing’s syndrome aimed at physicians

Almost by definition, rare diseases are so unusual information about them isn’t readily accessible—not only for patients chasing a diagnosis but for the physicians trying to help them. HRA Pharma wants to change that for at least one rare disease, Cushing’s syndrome, with the debut of a one-stop information hub for healthcare providers. The rare disease, […]

Fierce Pharma Asia—Pfizer’s China biosim retreat; WuXi Bio’s buying spree; Fujifilm’s $2B plant

Pfizer is retreating from China’s biosimilar market, ending development of three programs and selling a biologics plant pegged to make them to WuXi Biologics. In addition to the Pfizer deal, the Chinese CDMO also penned a deal to buy a more than 90% stake in another local CDMO play, CMAB Biopharma. Japanese company Fujifilm has chosen Holly Springs, North […]

Fujifilm takes its CDMO power play to the Tarheel State with plans for $2B plant

Holly Springs, North Carolina, is where Fujifilm will take its ambitious leap into large-scale cell culture manufacturing. In an emerging biotech hub 20 miles southwest of Raleigh, Fujifilm will build the largest cell culture biopharmaceutical CDMO facility in North America, the company said Thursday. The Tokyo-based firm will invest more than $2 billion in the project, expecting […]

Europe endorses AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine’s safety amid blood clot concerns

After a tough few days for the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine rollout, the European Medicines Agency offered fresh backing for the shot’s safety on Thursday. But after reviewing cases of rare blood clots, the agency couldn’t definitively rule out the risk. The regulator reached a “clear scientific conclusion” that the AZ shot is “safe and effective,” EMA executive director Emer […]

Time to shine? Pharmas aim to parlay pandemic goodwill into long-term reputation gains

The coronavirus pandemic threw pharma companies into the spotlight—whether they wanted it or not. But what began as a rush to COVID-19 vaccine and treatment research is now morphing into long-term business strategies—and changes in the way pharma companies manage their corporate image, says one reputation expert. There’s been a noticeable uptick in interest from […]

Feds halt Eli Lilly’s solo antibody rollout in 3 states on worries about local coronavirus variant

Throughout the rollout of COVID-19 antibodies, Eli Lilly and federal officials have been contending with lower-than-expected uptake. Now, they’re dealing with variants.  Officials stopped distributing Eli Lilly’s bamlanivimab in three states—California, Arizona and Nevada—because of worries about a variant there, the company confirmed. FDA acting Commissioner Janet Woodcock, M.D., shared the info during an American Medical Association webinar Wednesday, first reported by Endpoints News. A […]

FDA warning letters detail violations at China, Mexico drugmakers already under import alert

Shoddy manufacturing practices triggered FDA warning letters for a pair of foreign producers of over-the-counter drugs.  Dibar of Mexico, a CDMO for nutritional and self-care products, and Foshan Biours Biosciences of China, which specializes in gel patches, were cited for failure to fix problems the FDA raised in April of last year. Both letters were dated March […]

Pfizer halts biosimilar programs in crowded China market, sells plant to WuXi Biologics

China only approved its first biosimilar drug in 2019, but the market is already looking too crowded for one Big Pharma company. Pfizer has halted its biosimilar programs in China and is selling a biologics facility there to Chinese CDMO giant WuXi Biologics, the company said in a statement Wednesday. The “difficult decision” came after a […]

AbbVie’s big Rinvoq ambitions hit an FDA snag as JAK safety questions persist

Ahead of AbbVie’s massive patent cliff for immunology blockbuster Humira in 2023, the company is busy launching next-gen drugs Rinvoq and Skyrizi. But that effort has hit a hurdle at the FDA—at least temporarily. The agency extended its review on Rinvoq in psoriatic arthritis and raised additional questions in atopic dermatitis, too, threatening a much-anticipated challenge to Regeneron and Sanofi’s Dupixent. The FDA […]

Catalent aims to double capacity at Italian plant to produce J&J’s coronavirus vaccine

With AstraZeneca failing to meet supply targets for its COVID-19 vaccine, Europe is struggling to live up to promises to protect its 764 million people from the disease. Johnson & Johnson’s shot, approved in the EU last week, could help fill the gap—and the pharma has turned to Catalent to speed up production. Catalent said Wednesday […]

In another Merck executive switch, Chief Marketing Officer Nally exits and CCO Clyburn steps up

Merck & Co.’s chief marketing officer is leaving the company, marking another leadership swap at the top of the company as CEO Ken Frazier prepares to retire. Michael Nally, chief marketing officer of Merck’s Human Health business, will depart at the end of March. The company has tapped commercial officer Frank Clyburn to slide into the role—and take another […]

Horizon, Roche’s Genentech, AbbVie and Neurocrine rank as top pharma places to work in annual poll

A whopping 97% of Horizon Therapeutics employees say it’s a great place to work. It’s no wonder the company tops Fortune’s annual list of best places to work in pharma and healthcare. Horizon led Fortune and Great Place to Work’s list, with Roche’s Genentech, AbbVie, Neurocrine Biosciences and United Therapeutics rounding out the top five. Horizon marks […]