PHARMACY

Study: Genetic predisposition to dyslipidemia associated with Type 2 diabetes risk

BY Allison Cerra

ATLANTA — People that are genetically predisposed to developing a condition that causes high blood cholesterol levels may be at an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, according to a new study.

The study, published in the journal Diabetes, was led by Qibin Qi of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston and included 2,447 patients with Type 2 diabetes and 3,052 control participants of European ancestry from the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. Researchers found that the genetic predisposition to dyslipidemia, a lipid disorder caused by high cholesterol, was estimated by three genotype scores of lipids: LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Qi and colleagues found, however, that among the three scores, HDL cholesterol and triglyceride genotype scores were related to elevated Type 2 diabetes risk of 3% and 2%, respectively.

"In conclusion, genetic predisposition to low HDL cholesterol or high triglycerides is related to elevated type 2 diabetes risk," the researchers said.

Click here to access the full study results.

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Mylan to challenge court decision over generic asthma, COPD drug

BY Alaric DeArment

PITTSBURGH — Generic drug maker Mylan plans to challenge a court decision that requires it to pay almost $20 million to a drug company whose product it tried to market as a generic.

Sunovion Pharmaceuticals sued Mylan and several subsidiaries in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware when the latter sought to market a generic version of Sunovion’s Xopenex (levalbuterol hydrochloride) inhalation solution, a drug for asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The jury’s verdict includes an $18 million award.

"While this is not a significant product for Mylan, we firmly believe that the jury has erred and intend to seek reversal through post-trial motions and, if necessary, an appeal of the verdict and the damages award," Mylan CEO Heather Bresch said.


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Kerr Drug encourages patients to talk to their pharmacists

BY Alaric DeArment

RALEIGH, N.C. — Kerr Drug is launching a new campaign to get people to talk to their pharmacists, the chain announced.

Kerr said it would launch the "Just Ask" marketing campaign in stores and across various marketing channels to encourage its pharmacists and patients to talk to each other about prescriptions, conditions, health practices and overall health.

"I know from working as a pharmacist that there are many reasons people don’t ask about their medicines, including confusion, embarrassment or the patient just not wanting to bother the pharmacist," Kerr CEO Tony Civello said. "The ‘Just Ask’ campaign will encourage conversations and a sharing of information because it’s the best way to avoid poor health outcomes."

Kerr noted that surveys have shown 3-in-4 people don’t always take their medicines as directed, which can lead to serious health consequences, higher medical costs and longer recovery times. Kerr’s campaign will focus on 11 conditions, such as cardiovascular diseases and diabetes, and specific questions a patient might have, such as a medication’s name and what it does; when and how to take it; how patients can save money with generics or other changes; side effects; interactions between medications and other medications, foods and alcohol; what happens when a dose is missed; and how long a patient has to take a medicine.

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