HEALTH

Shire, Acceleron Pharma ink development deal

BY Alaric DeArment

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. British drug maker Shire is working with Cambridge, Mass.-based Acceleron Pharma to develop treatments for serious muscular disorders, Shire said Thursday.

 

The drug maker announced that the two companies would investigate ACE-031, a drug in mid-stage clinical trials as a treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a rare and fatal muscle disorder with no current treatment. The drug belongs to a class known as activin receptor type IIB, or ActRIIB molecules.

 

 

The two companies will work together to advance ACE-031 into a global phase-2 and -3 clinical program designed to demonstrate disease modification in patients with DMD.

 

 

Under the agreement, Shire will pay Acceleron $45 million upfront, and the latter company will be eligible for milestone payments of up to $453 million for ACE-031 and other molecules. If the drug manages to win regulatory approval, Acceleron will have rights to commercialize it in the United States and Canada, while Shire will have rights in other countries.

 

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Watson gets FDA approval for generic Yasmin

BY Alaric DeArment

MORRISTOWN, N.J. The Food and Drug Administration has approved a generic oral contraceptive made by Watson Pharmaceuticals, the drug maker said Tuesday.

 

Watson announced the FDA’s approval of Zarah (drospirenone and ethinyl estradiol tablets) in the 3 mg/0.03 mg strength. The drug is a generic version of Bayer’s Yasmin.

 

 

Watson said it has started shipping the drug, though Bayer’s patent litigation suit against the company concerning the drug remains pending in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

 

 

Yasmin and generic versions had sales of around $97 million during the 12 months ended in June, according to IMS Health.

 

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Periscope thinks pink with new lighted folio

BY Allison Cerra

RIDGEWOOD, N.J. A maker of deluxe e-reader covers has released a new version of its lighted folio.

Periscope released its new pink lighted folio in line with National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the company said. Available for a suggested retail price of $49.95, the Periscope lighted folio is an “all-in-one” item that features a retractable Periscope twin LED reading light, deluxe cover and notebook/pen holder in one fashionably designed pink leatherette unit.

“With today’s debut of the pink lighted folio for both the [Amazon] Kindle 2 and [Barnes & Noble] Nook e-readers, and with National Breast Cancer Awareness Month occurring in October, we decided there was no better time to show our support of those whose lives have been affected by breast cancer,” Periscope president Eric Fisherman said. “The new pink lighted folio makes an ideal gift choice for gift-givers who wish to give a gift that has a greater significance. Now every time a consumer uses their pink lighted folio, they will be reminded of all those whose lives have been touched in any way by breast cancer.

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