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Archive for the ‘Daiichi Sankyo’ Category

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Had a great time last week at the SPBT conference. Planning to get out a summary post later this week…

TODAY’S NEWS:

Big news for Novartis: FDA panel unanimously recommends approval for oral MS drug – A Food and Drug Administration panel has unanimously backed the safety and effectiveness of Novartis’  multiple sclerosis treatment fingolimod. The panel voted 25-0 in support of fingolimod’s “substantial evidence of effectiveness” in treating patients with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis. That makes it likely the drug will be the first oral MS treatment to gain FDA approval, beating Merck, Sanofi  and Teva – all of which are developing their own oral MS drugs – to the punchmore

Glaxo cuts 700 more sales/marketing positions – A Glaxo spokeswoman said 700 sales and marketing staffers (and related support staff) have taken buyout offers in recent months, while others’ jobs are being cut. She declined to give a total figure, but said the cuts are affecting “a variety of different positions in the U.S. pharma commercial staff.”more

Uncomfortable links being investigated – ARB high blood pressure drugs/cancer; Daiichi‘s Benicar and heart disease; troubling new data on GSK‘s Avandia and heart disease.

A “pill mill” in Kansas and multiple fatalities from the “lollipop of death.”

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Fresh from the tube this weekend: the first ever DTC commercial for medical devices?

JUST FOR FUN

This may just be the most hideous website “designed” by man. Do not click with any consumables in your mouth…

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Review of this week’s snow-impacted ePharma Summit conference is now up on the blog!

TODAY’S NEWS

Benicar for kiddies – Olmesartan medoxomil (Benicar), approved in 2002 to treat high blood pressure in adults, has been sanctioned by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat the same condition in children aged 6 to 16, drug maker Daiichi Sankyo said Thursdaymore

Ouch. More cuts at The Medicines Co. – Medicines Co said it would cut 43 jobs, or 26 percent of its field-based workforce, by the end of February, and take a related charge of $3.5 million in the first quartermore

Billy Tauzin leaving as head of PhRMA – The head of the influential trade association for drug manufacturers announced Thursday night that he is leaving his job. The development comes amid uncertainty over the fate of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, which the drug association had backed after striking a deal with the White House and Senate Democrats to limit costs to the industry in the legislationmore

J&J launches new social media initiatives.

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PLUS

Visual treat – Out-of-this-world coral photos. Yum.

JUST FOR FUN

31 Awesome benches. Oddly amusing!

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FDA to Zeltia: NO – An FDA advisory committee has handed Spain’s Zeltia a crushing blow, deciding against a combination therapy that includes its lead cancer drug Yondelis (trabectedin) by a vote of 14 to 1. The news cost Zeltia 35 percent of its share price…more

FDA to Shire: Fast-track – Shire plc, the global specialty biopharmaceutical company, announces it has received Fast Track designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for velaglucerase alfa, its enzyme replacement therapy in development for the treatment of Type I Gaucher disease…more

Pfizer: We want to be #3! – Pfizer Inc. plans for its worldwide sales of medicines for treating cancer to increase 10-fold by 2018, said Andreas Penk, regional president of the company’s cancer business in Europe. Pfizer, the world’s biggest drugmaker, had about $2.5 billion in cancer-medicine sales in 2008, according to the company. Pfizer plans to become the third-largest maker of cancer treatments, up from about seventh now…more

Daiichi chief talks about Effient.

Med Device firms and Kickbacks – Several large medical device companies have been accused of marketing their products for unapproved uses while charging the federal government, according to documents unsealed in Houston federal court…more

PLUS – What if I was to go back into Pharma Sales?

AND – some recent stats on physicians on-line (globally). Pretty big. And while we’re at pretty big, here is the horrendous tangle that could be the future of healthcare here in the U.S.

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Finally – FDA approves DSI/Lilly blood thinner Effient. Narrow indication with warnings, however – The approval makes Lilly‘s Effient the first real competition to the blood thinner Plavix, the world’s second-best selling medication made by Sanofi-Aventis and Bristol-Myers Squibbmore

Debate ignited over newer vs. older schizophrenia drugs – Schizophrenia patients given a cheap older drug are less likely to die prematurely than people on newer treatments, despite the older product’s well-known adverse side effects, Finnish researchers said on Mondaymore

Sermo and AMA get into a public spat. Who represents doctors, really?

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OK, so it’s a “baker’s three” (8) today. Makes up for yesterday’s zero…!

Patent-holder urges FDA to NOT approve prasugrel (from Lilly/Daiichi Sankyo).

Novartis getting cold feet at the Alcon altar? – Novartis betrothed itself to Alcon, but it may not follow through with the engagement. CEO Daniel Vasella told Bloomberg that his company might just pass on its option to buy a majority stake in the eye-care companymore

Abbott and AstraZeneca apply for combo drug approval – CERTRIAD is an investigational compound containing the active ingredients of CRESTOR and TRILIPIX under development by Abbott and AstraZeneca for the treatment of mixed dyslipidemiamore

Hope for treating resistant TB? – An experimental drug that starves the bacteria responsible for tuberculosis makes conventional therapy five times more effective against drug-resistant TB, doctors reported on Wednesday. The company-run study found that the Johnson & Johnson drug TMC207, if added to a standard cocktail of five other TB medicines, cleared traces of the tuberculosis bacteria in the sputum of 48 percent of the volunteers after eight weeks. Only 9 percent of patients given the five older drugs alone showed that type of improvement…more

Genzyme buys up rights to Campath from Bayer (for potential MS treatment)

Takeda‘s nex-gen diabetes drug (alogliptin) delayed in Europe also. Major blow.

Questions swirling around Roche/Genentech‘s Avastin – Cancer researchers are beginning to ask why Roche‘s very expensive and very lucrative drug Avastin is not providing bigger survival gains for cancer patients… “Is it a home run drug? No,” says Jennifer Litton, a breast cancer specialist at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. “When I’ve seen it work, it works phenomenally, but we need to get smarter as to who those people are that get those dramatic responses.”more

PLUS – what is J&J up to? Here’s the preview

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Ortho-McNeil launches Facebook page for adult ADHD sufferers.

Lilly and Amylin teaming up to produce once-a-week diabetes pen.

Good stuff on Merck KGaA‘s oral MS drug. That company and Novartis both bringing groundbreaking new ones to market.

LATE BREAKING – big cuts at Seattle’s ZymoGenetics.

And, hey, why not a bit of speculation to spice up the day? Should Sanofi buy Biogen?

Finally, a bit of Training Fresh Air. I really like this approach by Daiichi-Sankyo.

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I like this approach, taken by Daiichi-Sankyo. A lot. – Designed to improve a reps’ knowledge and understanding of hypertension and related cardiovascular disease, ASH’s Hypertension Accreditation Program will train more than 700 Daiichi sales team members in the first year of the program…To achieve accreditation, sales reps will undergo rigorous training (approximately 10 hours of home study prior to the live course, 13 hours of intense classroom training over two days, and six hours of homework) that concludes with a one-hour written exam administered by ASH…In 2008, a “Hot Spot” survey conducted by the online physician community Sermo revealed that physicians prefer to interact with more highly-trained reps who are better educated and prepared to engage in higher-level discussion about relevant diseases and available treatments.

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