PHARMACY

Ranbaxy announces collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline for breathing treatment

BY Alaric DeArment

GURGAON, India Indian drug maker Ranbaxy Laboratories announced Monday that it had submitted an approval application to India’s Drug Controller General for permission to start phase I human clinical trials of a respiratory inflammation candidate it identified last year through its collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline.

The company said it had finished all required regulatory safety and toxicity studies on the drug candidate and also plans to seek approval for phase I studies in other countries.

“The long-standing, vibrant collaboration between [GSK] and Ranbaxy has been the key for this success,” Ranbaxy senior vice president for new drug discovery research Dr. Pradip Bhatnagar said. “This achievement also reflects the discovery and development capabilities of Ranbaxy’s R&D team.”

Several companies known for generic drugs have sought to bolster their product lineups with novel drugs. On Friday, the Food and Drug Administration approved Rapaflo (silodosin), Watson Pharmaceuticals’ treatment for enlarged prostate.

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Capital Health System, Bristol-Myers Squibb to spread awareness about chronic diseases, prescription drugs

BY Jenna Duncan

PRINCETON, N.J. Bristol-Myers Squibb and Capital Health System have announced that they will co-host a health fair Tuesday, Oct.14, to highlight the importance of managing chronic diseases and disseminate information about assistance programs created to help low-income patients pay for prescription drugs.

The fair is scheduled to start at noon and run until 3 p.m. at the Capital Health System Family Health Center in Trenton. Free wellness screenings will be given and actor Joey Pantoliano will make an appearance and speak about diagnosing and treating depression.

Pantoliano will speak on behalf of the Partnership for Prescription Assistance, a nationwide network of pharmaceutical makers working to provide assistance to low-income individuals to pay for their medications for chronic illnesses.

Capital Health System also will provide free high blood pressure, diabetes, dyslipidemia and HIV/AIDS screenings, free vision tests, perform height and weight screenings and distribute information about breast, colorectal and prostate cancers.

Other health-related information provided by Capital and Bristol-Myers Squibb at the fair will cover body composition screenings for newborns, breast-feeding information for new mothers as well as bicycle safety training and demos on and car seat installations for small children.

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Appeals court sides with Amgen over Roche anemia drug patent infringement

BY Alaric DeArment

WASHINGTON Amgen won a case against Roche over a drug for anemia that the latter has tried to get into the United States market in a U.S. appeals court Friday, affirming an Oct. 3 decision by a federal judge in Boston.

Amgen said that Roche’s drug Mircera (methoxy polyethylene glycol-epoetin beta) infringed on its patents for the drugs Aranesp (darbepoetin alfa) and Epogen (epoetin alfa). Mircera is on the market in Europe, and the Food and Drug Administration approved it for the U.S. market in 2007.

“Amgen is pleased that the Court of Appeals has affirmed the preliminary injunction barring Roche from selling its [peg-erythropoietin] product in the United States in violation of Amgen’s erythropoietin patents,” Thousand Oaks, Calif.-based Amgen said in a statement.

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