HEALTH

Prestige Brands expresses surprise over acquisition letter; will take under advisement

BY Michael Johnsen

IRVINGTON, N.Y. — Prestige Brands will take an acquisition offer from Genomma Lab Internacional under advisement, the company announced Tuesday evening.

Prestige Brands confirmed the company’s receipt of a non-binding letter from Genomma Lab Internacional, proposing to acquire all outstanding common shares of Prestige Brands at a price of $16.60 per share in cash.

"The ‘offer’ described in the letter is highly conditional, requiring, among other things, due diligence, significant financing and Genomma Lab shareholder approval," Prestige stated in a release. "Given the extensive conditionality, combined with the absence of detail and the expressed preference for a negotiated transaction, we are puzzled by Genomma Lab’s decision to go public without any attempt to first engage in discussions with, or make a proposal to, the board of directors of Prestige Brands. The company advises shareholders that they need not take any action at this time in response to Genomma Lab’s letter."

Consistent with its fiduciary duties to act in the best interests of Prestige Brands and its stockholders, and in consultation with its independent financial and legal advisors, the board of directors of the company will review the Genomma Lab letter and respond in due course, Prestige stated.

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Schumer calls on FDA to investigate inhaler product marketed as supplement

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — Sen. Charles Schumer on Tuesday announced that the Food and Drug Administration has agreed to conduct a full review of the safety and legality of the new caffeine inhaler AeroShot, distributed by Breathable Foods, which hit stores in New York and Boston this past month.

The product, a lipstick-sized disposable inhaler, allows the user to inhale a powder formulated with 100 mg of caffeine. Schumer first called on the FDA to review the safety and legality of the product in December 2011, before the product started shipping in January, with a particular focus on both how it would affect teens and its use in combination with alcohol. Schumer announced that the FDA has agreed to his request and will conduct a review of the safety and legality of the product.

Schumer also questioned whether or not the product is legally marketed as a dietary supplement. “The AeroShot caffeine inhaler is being marketed as a party enhancer; it can facilitate excessive drinking, and its effects have never been examined by independent regulators to determine their impact on the human body and in combination with alcohol, especially for adolescents,” Schumer stated. “We need to make sure that AeroShot does not become the next Four Loko, [an alcohol/caffeine combination beverage pulled off the market in 2010], by facilitating dangerous levels of drinking among teenagers and college students.”

In December, Schumer urged the FDA to request and review product safety evidence from AeroShot’s manufacturer, including whether the product is harmful to children, adolescents and the overall public health. Schumer specifically raised concerns over the potential for the product to be abused by adolescents in conjunction with alcohol. In a separate letter sent to AeroShot’s manufacturer, the American Academy of Pediatrics also raised concerns about the inhaled caffeine product and the effects of caffeine on developing neurologic and cardiovascular systems, the potential for the product to exacerbate asthma, and the risk of physical dependence and addiction. The organization also raised concerns over the impact of the powder in AeroShot being absorbed by the lungs.


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Jarrow Formulas product featured on ‘The Dr. Oz Show’

BY Michael Johnsen

LOS ANGELES — The syndicated health program "The Dr. Oz Show" last week featured Jarrow Formulas’ Carnosine supplement, Jarrow announced.

Cardiothoracic surgeon Mehmet Oz, host of the show, touted the benefits of supple skin and improved eye and mind health in the segment. "As we age, our natural Carnosine levels drop more than 60%, causing a loss in vitality," Oz said. "Now researchers are eyeing a supplement form of Carnosine that can have the same rejuvenating effects. Studies show it is a potent antioxidant that can reduce fine lines, wrinkles and even improve brain function.”

 


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