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Samsung offers sneak peak at new wristband health tracker

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN FRANCISCO – Samsung on Wednesday announced the pending launch of a wristband and software platform it hopes developers will use to create health trackers that “can’t even be imagined yet,” Young Sohn, Samsung’s chief strategy officer, said, according to published reports.

The wristband is called the Simband and runs open platform software so that other developers can create different modules. According to a report in USA Today, Sohn said Samsung partners are already working on modules that can track medical data, such as the oxygen content of the blood.

Samsung is working with researchers at the University of California San Francisco’s digital health innovation lab to validate the accuracy of the sensors, according to the report.

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Dollar General CEO shares secret to chain’s success at shareholder meeting

BY Michael Johnsen

GOODLETTSVILLE, Tenn. — The secret to Dollar General’s success is keeping it simple, Rick Dreiling, chairman and CEO of the 75-year-old discounter, told shareholders Thursday morning. "Simple neighborhood stores, simple, frequently-needed items and everyday low prices," he said. "For 75 years, [Dollar General has focused] on helping low- and middle-income families save money and save time by offering quality, basic merchandise at affordable prices in convenient, small-box neighborhood stores." 

Dollar General is the largest discounter with more than 11,000 locations across 40 states, Dreiling said, and the company will add some 700 new stores in 2014. "We still have room to grow," Dreiling said. "We will continue to relocate, remodel and refresh our stores to build our brand and enhance our customer shopping experience."

In 2013, Dollar General’s net sales increased by 9.2% to $17.5 billion, Dreiling said. That represents $220 per square foot. Same-store sales grew 3.3%, marking the company’s 24th consecutive year of same-store sales growth.

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FDA approves Trimel Pharmaceuticals’ Natesto testosterone nasal gel

BY Michael Johnsen

TORONTO — Trimel Pharmaceuticals on Wednesday announced that the Food and Drug Administration has approved Natesto (testosterone), formerly CompleoTRT, the first and only testosterone nasal gel for replacement therapy in adult males for conditions associated with a deficiency or absence of endogenous testosterone. 

Natesto is self-administered via a nasal applicator, thereby minimizing the risk of secondary exposure to testosterone of women or children.

"In my practice, I regularly encounter men demonstrating symptoms of hypogonadism and physicians will increasingly see this as the North American population ages," said Jeffrey Rosen, the medical director and founder of Clinical Research of South Florida. "For these patients seeking to restore their testosterone levels, Natesto will offer an alternative delivery system that is safer and more convenient than the other options currently available on the market." 

According to Trimel, it conservatively is estimated that nearly 13 million American men may have low testosterone levels. Current treatment guidelines focus on the restoration of the physiological testosterone level through the use of exogenous testosterone preparations, which include topical gels applied by the hands, subcutaneous pellets, transdermal patches, intramuscular injections and oral tablets, as well as a buccal patch.

"The FDA approval for Natesto is a major achievement for our company, as it validates our clinical research and development efforts, as well as reinforces our commitment to provide innovative treatment options for patients," said Tom Rossi, Trimel Pharmaceuticals president and CEO. "Men suffering from ‘Low T’ will now have a different option to raise their testosterone levels. This novel route of administration will enable men to take this therapy in mere seconds, without worrying about the risk associated with transferring the product to women or children. We are now focused on getting Natesto to market as expeditiously as possible so that appropriate patients can have access to it."

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