PHARMACY

Takeda America seeks to acquire Calif. drug maker

BY Alaric DeArment

OSAKA, Japan The U.S. subsidiary of a Japanese pharmaceutical company plans to acquire a California drug maker.

Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. announced Monday that it would acquire all outstanding shares of Irvine, Calif.-based IDM Pharma. The subsidiary, Takeda America Holdings, has established Jade Subsidiary Corp. to carry out the transaction.

IDM recently won approval in Europe to market Mepact (mifamurtide), a medicine for treating post-operative non-metastatic osteosarcoma, a bone cancer, in children.

“Mepact delivers a demonstrated survival advantage for young patients with a specific type of bone cancer and provides Takeda with an approved therapy that contributes immediately to our top-line growth,” Takeda Pharmaceuticals Europe CEO Erich Brunn stated. “We envisage that the product will become a key driver in enhancing our European oncology franchise.”

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E.F. Bavis and Associates create non-pneumatic, tape-drive prescription carrier

BY Alaric DeArment

CINCINNATI Retail pharmacies that deliver prescriptions to drive-through customers via pneumatic tube have a more environmentally friendly option.

E.F. Bavis and Associates, a company that manufactures drive-through equipment for retail pharmacies, banks and quick-service businesses, has launched the Captive Carrier TransTrax, a non-pneumatic, tape-drive prescription carrier. The company said that other systems typically use 40 amps to operate, while E.F. Bavis’ uses two amps and is made with recyclable materials.

A company spokesman said that while it is conceptually similar to a pneumatic tube system, the use of a tape drive allows Captive Carrier to adjust to different vehicle heights and allows for manual retrieval in the event of a power failure.

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Genentech presents positive study results at ASCO meeting

BY Alaric DeArment

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. Positive results of phase 2 and phase 3 studies of a cancer-fighting monoclonal antibody are among the subjects that biotech company Genentech plans to present at the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s 45th annual meeting in Orlando, Fla.

Key study results will include positive phase 3 results for Herceptin (trastuzumab) in advanced HER2-positive stomach cancer and phase 2 data in metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer with trastuzumab-DM1, which uses Herceptin’s antibody to deliver a specialized cancer cell-killing agent to tumor cells. The company will also present data from two phase 3 studies of Avastin (bevacizumab), one that studied the drug as a treatment for early-stage colon cancer and another that investigated a combination of the drug with Tarceva (erlotinib) as a first-line treatment for non-small cell lung cancer.

 

“By focusing on the biology of cancer, we are able to create potential new therapies that uniquely target the disease, impede multiple growth triggers and can be used at different times during the course of treatment,” Genentech chief medical officer and EVP global development Hal Barron stated. “Biomarker research is involved in each of our cancer development programs in order to help us identify which patients may respond best to our medicines.”

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