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Archive for September, 2009

TODAY’S NEWS

Novartis’ new MS drug (FTY 720) looking good in Phase III trials. New results just released.

Vertextakeover target? For a company looking to expand into Hepatitis C, Vertex is a prime candidate.

Boston Scientific and J&J making peace with the lawyer-enriching stent suits.

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PLUS

Careful of those press releases, pharma execs. They could land you in jail! Of course, mishandling data can get you publicly fired. And, from bNet Pharma, the 10 weirdest drug stories of the month.

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There’s a huge amount of stuff going on in pharma social media this month. Here’s a distillation of news and resources for your perusal:

> Google’s Sidewiki – now users can leave comments on any site (including yours). Game-changer? Annoyance? What do you think?

> Slideshow – Pharma’s Top 10 Efforts in Social Media

> An interview I gave last week (archived here) on Pharma and Social Media, via BlogTalkRadio. Good for intro’ing your colleagues to the basics, and an encouragement to move forward with low-risk strategies.

> Where are the doctors hanging out? Healthcare Professionals Social Networks (globally) (slideshow). Plus, Sermo Panels Express – you can immediately tap into physician focus groups with this service.

> Prepping for the FDA public forum on Social Media/Web 2.0 in pharma – a series of interesting posts and survey results (ongoing) over at John Mack’s blog.

> 8 Tips to help you own YouTube search results. From Jon Richman‘s Dose of Digital blog. And, from Ogilvy PR, 10 Rules of Using YouTube for Pharma and Healthcare Marketing

> From last week’s PharmaMed conference. A summary by Ellen Hoenig. An iPhone experiment that worked (ever wondered what I look like “live”? – here’s your chance!). The collected Twitterstream for the conference (via CoverItLive).

Craig DeLarge: Reflections on Pharma New Media Adoption. Timely and timeless thoughts.

Coming up in October:

DigitalPharma

Oct. 19-21 - eXL’s Digital Pharma conference, Bridgewater, NJ. This event will be quite progressive, with more of an informal “unconference” format to maximize interaction. I’ll be co-leading a pre-conference workshop on the 19th on social media, and live-blogging/Twittering. Here’s a discount code for 15% your registration: P615WOO

PLUS – My fall conference schedule (updated)

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SocialRx – page with resources and links for pharma professionals interested in social media (plus free e-book!)

PharmaCentral – a portal for easily viewing what’s new with pharma blogs and news.

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Where to get your overview of Social Media in Pharma? Right here: http://bit.ly/socialrx

TODAY’S NEWS

Pharma’s new hot properties - vaccines.

Boehringer Ingelheim pressing forward with its experimental DPP-4 inhibitor for diabetes – Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced the conclusion of the linagliptin pivotal Phase III clinical trials, including more than 4,000 patients in 40 countries worldwide. Phase II data for linagliptin were presented earlier this year at the annual American Diabetes Association (ADA) Scientific Sessions. Full results from the Phase III trials will be presented at international scientific congresses in 2010 and beyond...more

Merck’s diabetes drug Januvia significantly lowers blood sugar – A post-hoc analysis, presented at the 45th Annual Meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD), of data pooled from studies of 104 weeks in duration showed ‘Januvia®’ (sitagliptin), when taken alone or in combination with metformin, provided significant blood sugar lowering over two yearsmore

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Has the game changed in a dramatic way in pharma social media? I think it may be likely – my initial thoughts on Google’s Sidewiki tool, which allows user commentary on ANY site.

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Take a look at the screen shot below, from Pfizer’s homepage. Believe it or not, I, or anyone else, can now leave comments “on” any website (such as Pfizer.com) using a new tool (currently in beta) from Google, called Sidewiki.

PfizerSidewiki2

Game-changer? You bet.

While the use of Google’s Sidewiki has ramifications across the entire web, for every type of site or industry, I’m going to focus here on the pharma industry. Because in pharma, it’s all about controlled messaging via corporate sites, and by and large, the idea of people being able to freely comment on (just about) anything is anathema.

The locus of control has just shifted. You can turn off comments on websites and blogs, but now, people can have their say, and the comments are accessible right there via Sidewiki when people come to your site.

How does this work? Google is not the first to try to allow user-generated commentary on any site, but they are certainly the biggest and most sophisticated. All you have to do is have a Google account, download the Google toolbar for your browser (currently IE and Firefox), and activate the Sidewiki capability. That’s it. More detailed explanations of how it works and how to get started are here and here.

MackSidewiki2

I decided to go to fellow blogger John Mack’s site and leave a Sidewiki comment there (above). Now John allows (and welcomes) comments, of course, but with Sidewiki, that is irrelevant. And even for those sites where comments are reviewed before approval, Sidewiki allows commentary completely apart from the intervention or approval of the site owner.

How will this change the game with regulatory issues? Well, it’s a big monkey wrench. A pharmaceutical company already cannot control what people say about it, or its products, on various sites. But now people can express themselves with annotations that are, in essence, sidebarred on company sites! Can a company be held liable for, say, off-label discussions that happen on Sidewiki in association with a product site?

It’s a good thing that the FDA will hold hearings in November about the use of social media/Web 2.0 in pharma communications, because we now have a new issue to put on the table. How does industry and its regulatory bodies view user-generated content that cannot be controlled, yet exists in conjunction with company-sponsored sites?

Some question whether the adoption rate of Sidewiki will be significant enough to make a huge difference. It’s a fair question, but I don’t believe that’s the point. The really important thing is: the wall has been breached. I’m not sure there’s going to be any going back as this kind of (pretty much inevitable) approach evolves – it’s a Pandora’s box.

The rules of the game just changed again. There’s going to be a lot of mixed feelings about this one…

UPDATE: Fellow industry blogger Phil Baumann was thinking about the same theme today! Read his valuable thoughts. And Wendy Blackburn chimes in with some good input on what pharma can or cannot do about Sidewiki.

Want more on Pharma Social Media? Here’s the end-of-the-month roundup.

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Now Available – Archived interview on Social Media in Pharma last Friday with Paul Chaney – feel free to forward the link (http://bit.ly/29kAoN) to your colleagues.

TODAY’S NEWS

Abbott wins the bidding for Solvay’s drug unit - Abbott Laboratories will announce today the €5bn ($7.3bn) acquisition of Solvay’s pharmaceutical company, bringing a five-month takeover battle to an end and highlighting continued consolidation in the industry. The US drugmaker beat UCB of Belgium and Nycomed of Switzerland to buy the division, which is valued at between €4.5bn and €5bnmore

The Medicines Company gets encouraging results from Angiomax study – The Medicines Company today announced the presentation of 2-year clinical results from the landmark HORIZONS-AMI Trial. The trial showed that patients who had suffered the most severe form of heart attack were significantly less likely to suffer cardiac death and had better overall survival if treated with Angiomax® (bivalirudin) while undergoing angioplasty compared with those treated with heparin plus a platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitor (GPI) during angioplasty...more

Merck‘s diabetes drug Januvia with pancreatitis link? Merck says no, but FDA concerned.

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PLUS

Is the Apple iPhone 3GS good enough to record the video of an entire conference presentation? Well, yes, it kinda can. Here are the results of my little experiment, from last week’s PharmaMed conference.

Coming up next month:

DigitalPharma

Oct. 19-21 - eXL’s Digital Pharma conference, Bridgewater, NJ. This event will be quite progressive, with more of an informal “unconference” format to maximize interaction. I’ll be co-leading a pre-conference workshop on the 19th on social media, and live-blogging/Twittering. Here’s a discount code for 15% your registration: P615WOO

———-

Subscribe to the Impactiviti blog via e-mail (which will bring you Impactiviti Daily – a brief of the day’s top pharma news)

Sign up for the Impactiviti Connection twice-monthly e-newsletter (see sample)

Connect with Steve Woodruff

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Tune in TODAY – I’ll be doing a live on-line interview on Social Media in Pharma with Paul Chaney – starts at 1 pm EST (just use the call-in number – see the link). Also, here’s a page on my site with all sorts of social media resources for pharma professionals: http://bit.ly/socialrx

TODAY’S NEWS

AstraZeneca’s new Plavix-competitor Brilinta expected to go big - It is the first antiplatelet drug to demonstrate it can reduce cardiovascular (CV) deaths compared to the current gold standard treatment, Plavix (clopidogrel) in patients with acute coronary syndromes (ACS). Results of the 18600 patient Phase III PLATO trial comparing the two drugs, were revealed at the recent European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress in Barcelona…Platelet expert Dr Victor Serebruany agreed the mortality data is ”marvelous,” with 107 extra lives saved compared to Plavix. “It has never been seen before and no one expected it,” he saidmore

Big oncology news (approval for new lymphoma drug) today – Allos Therapeutics Inc. said Friday that regulators approved its injectable drug Folotyn as a treatment for peripheral T-cell lymphoma, a group of rare, agressive blood cancers, sending its shares soaring. Allos said the Food and Drug Administration granted accelerated approval, allowing the company to market Folotyn for use in patients whose cancer has returned or not responded to previous treatment. Allos expects to begin selling the drug in October. There are no drugs on the market that treat peripheral T-cell lymphoma, Allos saidmore Plus, some future hope from Roche on melanoma?

So the FDA is finally going to start wresting with social media in pharma! Here’s what companies need to do to prepare for the hearing this fall. And here also.

This bothers me.

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PLUS

An interview with the President and CEO of Sanofi-Aventis US (Gregory Irace), on the big changes they are undergoing to re-structure the company, and the way they deliver information.

Coming up next month:

DigitalPharma

Oct. 19-21 - eXL’s Digital Pharma conference, Bridgewater, NJ. This event will be quite progressive, with more of an informal “unconference” format to maximize interaction. I’ll be co-leading a pre-conference workshop on the 19th on social media, and live-blogging/Twittering. Here’s a discount code for 15% your registration: P615WOO

———-

Subscribe to the Impactiviti blog via e-mail (which will bring you Impactiviti Daily – a brief of the day’s top pharma news)

Sign up for the Impactiviti Connection twice-monthly e-newsletter (see sample)

Connect with Steve Woodruff

Read Full Post »

We’ll be giving live updates of the PharmaMed conference from Princeton on Sept. 23 and 24th – but also, you can get a live stream (using CoverItLive) of all the tweets coming from various social media users at the conference (and interacting from outside the conference using the #PharmaMed hashtag) on Twitter.

Launch the CoverItLive window: Click Here

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Twitter: @swoodruff

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See the newly-re-launched Impactiviti Collection e-newsletter! Here’s a link to the on-line sample; you can sign up to receive the Connection (~every two weeks) right here.

TODAY’S NEWS

Pfizer and Wyeth to sell off some Animal Health assets to Boehringer-Ingelheim.

Speaking of B-I, here’s a presentation from them on how they successfully use Twitter. Boehringer is one of the more engaged and interactive companies in the space.

Eli Lilly‘s Alimta improves survival for lung cancer.

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PLUS

Podcast today discussing latest social media in pharma developments, and upcoming Digital Pharma conference in October. Archived here.

JUST FOR FUN

Is it candy? Or medicine? This poster‘s both funny and a bit…scary.

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Subscribe to the Impactiviti blog via e-mail (which will bring you Impactiviti Daily – a brief of the day’s top pharma news)

Sign up for the Impactiviti Connection twice-monthly e-newsletter (see sample)

Connect with Steve Woodruff

Read Full Post »

See the newly-re-launched Impactiviti Collection e-newsletter! Here’s a link to the on-line sample; you can sign up to receive the Connection (~every two weeks) right here.

TODAY’S NEWS

It’s going to be a big week for Social Media in Pharma. Here’s the scoop.

Cancer drug Nexavar shows efficacy in breast cancer – Bayer and Onyx Pharmaceuticals‘  cancer pill Nexavar has demonstrated impressive results in treating breast tumours, brokerage Baird said on Monday, citing an abstract from a medical congress…Patients given Nexavar plus Xeloda had a 74 percent improvement in the time they lived without their disease progressing….more

AstraZeneca and Nektar Therapeutics in big licensing deal – Under the agreement, AstraZeneca will develop Nektar’s late-stage drug to treat opioid-induced constipation, NKTR-118, and NKTR-119, which is in its early-stage studies to treat pain without the side effects of constipationmore

Avastin for melanoma? That could be exciting. Melanoma has been notoriously resistant to everything thrown at it.

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PLUS

Everything you always wanted to know about Instructional Design Models. It’s actually a lot more than I want to know! Hat tip: Ellen Wagner

JUST FOR FUN

100% accuracy for the weather? Announcing…The Weather Channel Classic! (spoof)

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It’s only Monday morning and already the news hopper here at Impactiviti is brim-full with pharma social media stuff. That’s a good thing!

The Biggest Deal – Finally, after months of cajoling from all quarters (and John Mack gets a big handclap for his relentless calls to make this happen), the FDA has decided to call a public hearing on the use of social media/Web 2.0 approaches to pharma communications. This makes a lot of us very happy! Fabio Gratton put this post out on Friday as the news broke, and you’ll also want to read John Mack’s overview of the specific questions FDA will seek to address. One word of caution – there can be a very long time lapse between holding hearings, and taking action, when you’re dealing with FDA. But hey – it’s a step in the right direction, anyway, and long overdue!

Also, finally, the FDA is now on Twitter. It’s just one-way communications about drug info, but once again – a start.

And, while we’re at it, the use of social media tools among healthcare professionals is getting more attention.

Plus, this week’s conference on Pharma Marketing (with lots of emphasis on eMarketing/Social Media:

PharmaMed

I’ll be speaking at this conference on “Where’s the low-hanging fruit in pharma social media?, and live-blogging/Twittering. There will also be a tweetup at Princeton’s Triumph Brewery on Wednesday evening – here’s the invite.

How about a live streaming audio event on Tuesday. Sure – there’s an app for that. John Mack hosts a discussion with some of the organizers of the upcoming Digital Pharma conference (yes, I’m included – I’m planning to be at four ePharma conferences this fall) at 11:00 am EST. Sign up here!

From last Friday – my listing of your Top Four Pharma Social Media resources.

Oh, and why is J&J leading the pack in pharma social media? Read this interesting interview with Marc Monseau. In my mind, here’s the money quote:

One of the unique aspects about Marc’s Twitter profile is that he openly represents Johnson & Johnson without losing his personal identity. This might not sound particularly groundbreaking; yet most pharmaceutical corporate Twitter profiles are stripped of personal identity, whilst most pharmaceutical communicators use Twitter for personal, non-corporate communication only and are cautious about mentioning their pharmaceutical employer.

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Subscribe to the Impactiviti blog via e-mail (which will bring you Impactiviti Daily – a brief of the day’s top pharma news) Here’s today’s edition.

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