Eli Lilly CEO Addresses US Shortfall in Scientific Innovation

Patricia Van Arnum PharmTech editor In a speech before the Detroit Economic Club last week, John C. Lechleiter, chairman, president, and CEO of Eli Lilly, addressed what he regards as declining competitive scientific advantage in the US and the policies that he thinks are important for the US not to lose its position in the life sciences. Read more »

The Unkindest Cuts of All

Erik Greb PharmTech editorThese days, mandatory furloughs and staff cuts have employees in all industries nervously glancing over their shoulders. The pharmaceutical industry is no exception. Last week, Merck (Whitehouse Station, NJ) revealed plans to reduce its workforce by 15% by the end of 2012. Read more »

Repairing the Engine of Drug Innovation

Patricia Van Arnum PharmTech editor

In a speech last week to the City Club of San Diego, John Lechleiter, chairman and chief executive officer of Eli Lilly, offered very candid remarks about the state of innovation in the pharmaceutical industry, saying that the engine of biopharmaceutical innovation is “broken.” His comments may be a bitter pill to swallow in light of escalating investment in research and development (R&D), but his frankness may just be the remedy the industry needs to reinvent itself. Read more »

Can Insurance Companies Help Improve Health?

Angie Drakulich PharmTech editorUnitedHealth Group, a Minneapolis-based healthcare company, recently announced that it would soon provide a price break to members who correctly use certain asthma and antidepressant drugs. The news was reported in a Wall Street Journal article by Peter Loftus of Dow Jones Newswires.  

To get the $20 copay discount, members must refill their prescriptions within about 30 days after their last prescription runs out. Eligible drugs include GlaxoSmithKline’s Advair, AstraZeneca’s Symbicort, Eli Lilly’s Cymbalta, Wyeth’s Effexor XR, and Wyeth’s Pristiq. The discount applies to members who have a normal copay of $50 on these drugs, meaning the new copay would be $30, according to Loftus’ article. Read more »

Counterfeit Pharmaceuticals on the Internet

Alexis Brekke Pellek PharmTech editorGerman authorities busted a counterfeit-drug ring yesterday selling fake Viagra (Pfizer, New York) via Internet pharmacy websites, according to an Agence France-Presse report. After a months-long investigation involving 60 customs officers, seven prosecutors and 25 tax investigators, raids in five cities produced 46,000 counterfeit Viagra tablets, frozen bank accounts in Austria, Switzerland, Spain, Belgium, France, and Turkey, four confiscated luxury vehicles, 15,000 euros ($21,000) in cash, and four people in police custody. Read more »

Pharma Marketers May Have to Get More Creative

Angie Drakulich PharmTech editorWe’ve all seen trademarked skeletons, wall charts, calendars, paperweights, and supplies in doctors’ offices. And it’s blatantly clear that these items came from pharmaceutical companies—their names are written all over them. But soon, those long waits in the examining room before the doctor comes in may be quite boring because there won’t be much to look at. Read more »

Biologics: A Gamble or Safe Bet?

Patricia Van Arnum PharmTech editorPfizer announced this week that following a successful completion of its $68-billion acquisition of Wyeth, it will divide its research activities into two separate organizations, one for small molecules and one for biologics and vaccines. The reorganization is but a microcosm of Big Pharma’s larger strategic interest to strengthen its position in biologics with the hopes of improving its return on research and development (R&D). But is the calculus of intensifying R&D into biologics correct? Read more »

Eli Lilly Interested in Smaller Acquisitions, Not Mega-Merger

Alexis Brekke Pellek PharmTech editorEli Lilly & Co. (Indianapolis) CEO John Lechleiter earlier this week told the Financial Times that he is not interested in becoming part of the recent mega-merger trend (see Pfizer+Wyeth, Merck+Schering-Plough and Roche+Genentech). Rumors and speculation have had some thinking Lilly+Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) would be the next big thing, but Lechleiter specifically ended rumors of that combination and remained critical of Big Pharma’s recent big deals. Read more »

Lilly Offers $6.5 Billion for ImClone

Alexis Brekke Pellek PharmTech editorImClone and Eli Lilly announced Monday that Lilly offered to buy the company for $6.5 billion. Lilly turned out to be the $70-per-share mystery suitor, as was rumored last week. The acquisition will strengthen Lilly’s oncology portfolio, which includes “Gemzar” and “Alimta,” and now, ImClone’s “Erbitux.” Read more »

ImClone in Negotiations with Mystery Bidder

Alexis Brekke Pellek PharmTech editorWhen it rejected both of Bristol-Myers Squibb’s bids of $60, then $62 per share, ImClone said it had been approached by “a large pharmaceutical company” offering $70 per share, or $6.1 billion, subject to due diligence. Some wondered whether this was a bluff. Now, it seems the mystery suitor may be closer to owning the New York-based biotech company. Read more »

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