New chief executive officer at Lilly stresses drug development
INDIANAPOLIS John Lechleiter, a Harvard-trained chemist, has been named Eli Lilly’s chief executive officer beginning on April 1, according to published reports. He will be succeeding Sidney Taurel who has announced his retirement from the Fortune 500 company.
Lechleiter will be the ninth leader in the company’s 131 years, and make a salary of $1.4 million, with a possible bonus of $2 million depending on the company’s performance, according to published reports.
A new leader seems to be a positive change for the company as its best-selling drug Zyprexa, an anti-psychotic, will lose its patent protection in three years, and its other top-selling drugs Cymbalta, Gemzar and Humalong, will expire two years after, further increasing the company’s pressure to introduce new products to the market.
According to the new chief executive officer, the introduction of new drugs will be his main priority, and is optimistic in this development. “As many challenges as we have in this industry today, it’s also a time of tremendous opportunity when you look at how much more we know about the human biology that underlies the mechanisms of disease,” said Lechleiter.
GMDC’s Blough passes away at 58
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. GMDC on Thursday announced that Doug Blough, longtime director of communications for the association, passed away on March 22 at the age of 58 after a battle against pancreatic cancer.
“Doug made huge contributions to GMDC and its success over the years and he’ll be missed by all of us privileged to have worked with him,” stated David McConnell, GMDC president and chief executive officer. “He fought against this insidious disease and to the very end maintained the sense of dignity, kindness and caring for others that were at the core of who he was and how he’ll be remembered by all of us who were privileged to have known him.”
A resident of Colorado Springs since 1975, Blough’s relationship with GMDC spanned more than two decades as he served as an outside vendor providing visual communications services until he joined the staff management team in December of 1999. His tenure as a GMDC employee continued until the end of 2005 when he retired to spend more time with his wife Linda and pursue his passion for fine art digital imagery.
Even after his retirement from staff duty he was retained as a contractor who continued to manage GMDC’s creative and communication activities as well as serving as the Association’s liaison interfacing with the trade press and managing its public relations programs.
“Throughout his long tenure with GMDC Doug played a significant role in creating and managing the GMDC brand and was beloved in the industry as a person who always had a smile and a good word to say to anyone he ever encountered,” the association stated.
“Doug talked to me just a week ago about his anticipated passing with a sense of calm that amazed me and he actually played a big role in the planning of his funeral,” McConnell said. The funeral is being held Friday, March 28. McConnell is delivering the eulogy. “In these conversations and the planning process with [his wilfe] Linda he was consistent in stressing that it was very important that his passing be a celebration of his ife and who he was … not a time of sadness.”
The family has asked that in lieu of flowers donations be made to:
The Blough Children Educational Fundc/o US Bank6 South Tejon StreetColorado Springs, Colorado 80903Attention: L. Specht
Otsuka settles Abilify allegations for $4 million
TOKYO Otsuka Pharmaceuticals has agreed to pay $4 million to resolve allegations that it marketed its schizophrenia drug Abilify for off-label uses with Bristol-Myers Squibb, according to published reports.
Squibb settled its issue with Abilify back in September by agreeing to pay $515 million to settle allegations that it overcharged the government for drugs and promoted medicine like Abilify for unapproved uses.
The accusations came from the Justice Department, which stated that the companies of promoting the drug for use in children, and as a remedy for dementia, without FDA approval. Now, the drug is required to carry a black-box warning for use in dementia-related psychosis.
Otsuka will pay the government about $2.3 million and the remainder to states’ Medicaid programs, the company said in a statement. It agreed to a corporate integrity agreement, without specifying the length of the compliance and monitoring pledged. The agreement requires the company to maintain compliance programs to monitor business practices.
Over 12.5 million prescriptions have been written as of June 2007 for Abilify, according to IMS.