PHARMACY

Kinney Drugs, SLU negotiate deed restrictions

BY Michael Johnsen

CANTON, N.Y. St. Lawrence University has helped to hip-check national drug retailers Walgreens and Rite Aid out of coveted corners here for the next 50 years, the local daily Watertown Daily News reported Wednesday.

According to the paper, Kinney Drugs negotiated deed restrictions with SLU within the last five months on two properties—near the SLU golf course at routes 68 and 11—that will prevent for 50 years a store that sells prescriptions.

“We’ve heard the kind of rumors that everyone else has,” university spokeswoman Macreena Doyle told the paper. “We were given the impression that this was highly valuable property and we looked for some of that value.”

The deed restrictions reportedly cost Kinney $200,000, and precludes any development of a drug store, dollar store or health and beauty aids store on the vacant property, but allows for a convenience store, food store, restaurant or supermarket so long as it doesn’t have a pharmacy.

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European Commission approves marketing of Celgene drug

BY Alaric DeArment

BOUDRY, Switzerland The European Commission has approved the marketing of a cancer drug by Celgene International Sarl, the Swiss biotech company announced Tuesday.

 The company described Vidaza (azacitidine) as the first epigenetic cancer therapy to significantly extend survival for patients with intermediate-2 and higher-risk myelodysplastic syndromes and acute myeloid leukemia. 

“The European Commission approval of Vidaza is recognition of the significant survival benefited afforded by this therapy for critical hematological malignancies,” Celgene Europe president Philippe Van Holle.

“We will now begin working with local regulatory authorities on a country-by-country basis for reimbursement and distribution for all European Union member states.”

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Teva chief confident bill on follow-on biologics to appear in Congress

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK The chief executive officer of Teva North America is confident that a bill to create a regulatory pathway for follow-on biologics will appear in Congress next year, according to published reports.

Bill Marth, chief executive of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries? North America division, told Reuters Tuesday that there was a “very good chance” that Congress would introduce a bill to allow follow-on biologics, also known as biosimilars, in 2009. 

Several large drug makers have already announced plans to create biosimilar divisions, including Merck & Co., Eli Lilly & Co. and AstraZeneca, which announced its own plan earlier this week.

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