Watson inks deal with Itero
MORRISTOWN, N.J. Watson Pharmaceuticals will work with a venture-backed firm to develop a biosimilar treatment for female infertility, the generic drug maker said Thursday.
Watson said it had signed a deal with Itero Biopharmaceuticals to develop and commercialize Itero’s recombinant follicle stimulating hormone, or rFSH, currently in preclinical development. Watson will pay Itero licensing fees and milestone payments, though the amounts were not disclosed.
“Acquiring the rights to Itero’s rFSH product represents our first in-licensing of a biosimilar development project and demonstrates the execution of our plan to build a pipeline of biosimilar products through both internal development and external partnering with high-quality biopharmaceutical companies such as Itero,” Watson president and CEO Paul Bisaro said. “This project will capitalize on the world-class biologics capabilities of our Eden Biodesign group and represents a substantial step in Watson’s goal to build a significant position in the global biopharmaceutical marketplace.”
Pfizer, Samsung Medical Center form liver cancer research partnership
NEW YORK Treatments for liver cancer could emerge from a new research partnership between the world’s largest drug maker and a medical center in Korea.
Pfizer and the Samsung Medical Center in Seoul announced Wednesday a collaboration to analyze tumors from Korean patients and generate genetic profiles that they said could direct therapies and improve the outcomes of liver cancer patients.
“We are pleased to have an opportunity to work with the world’s No. 1 pharmaceutical company, Pfizer, to better understand cancer in Korean patients, with the goal of being able to send a new message of hope for patients with liver cancer across the world, especially in Asia,” Samsung Medical Center president Choi Han-Yong said.
Census Bureau reports retail sales for June
WASHINGTON The Census Bureau announced that advance estimates of retail and food services sales for June dropped 0.5% to $360.2 billion, compared with the previous month. However, sales rose 4.8% when compared with the year-ago period.
The Census Bureau also disclosed that total sales for the April through June 2010 period were up 6.8% from the same period a year ago, perhaps showing that an economic turnaround indeed is underway.
In related news, advance estimates were not available for drug store sales, although the Census Bureau noted that the market share for this business sector has remained relatively the same from month to month. Health and personal care stores saw a near 0.5% gain, increasing from $21.6 to $21.7 million. Grocery stores, however, dropped from $43.6 million to nearly $43.4 million.
“Today’s data shows consumers continue to take a cautious approach towards shopping,” said NRF president and CEO Matt Shay. “However, growth in key areas such as electronics, apparel and department stores is an encouraging sign as we enter the back-to-school shopping season.”