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Archive: May, 2012

POSTED: Thursday, May 31, 2012, 7:16 AM

Catalent Pharma Solutions said in a statement that it recently signed a "definitive agreement" to sell its U.S. commercial packaging operations based in Northeast Philadelphia and Woodstock, Ill., to a company affiliated with Frazier Healthcare, which is a West Coast-based venture capital firm.

The Catalent statement said "the transaction is subject to certain closing conditions and is expected to close in the next few months."

Catalent is controlled by the Blackstone Group. Blackstone paid about $3.3 billion to Cardinal Health for Catalent in 2007.

POSTED: Wednesday, May 30, 2012, 2:18 PM

All or part of Catalent Pharma Solutions, which has a big facility in Northeast Philadelphia and another in Mount Laurel, is about to be sold by the Blackstone Group to Frazier Healthcare, a West Coast-based venture capital firm, sources said.

Catalent contracts with pharmaceutical companies to manufacture and package medicine.

Neither the price of the transaction nor whether Blackstone is selling all or part of Catalent could be determined Wednesday afternoon.

POSTED: Wednesday, May 30, 2012, 9:58 AM

Endo Health Solutions is lobbying both sides of the political aisle for protection of its Lidoderm patch as Congress moves forward with bills to fund the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, according to a report in Wednesday's New York Times.

The Times reported that Endo hired a former Democratic Congressman to lobby Democrats and a former aide to Republican Rep. Fred Upton (Mich.), who leads the House committee overseeing FDA authorization, to urge Republicans to write rules into the legislation that would require greater testing of some generic products.

Endo is based in Chadds Ford. The prescription lidoderm patch is used for treatment of after-shingles pain.

POSTED: Tuesday, May 29, 2012, 6:30 PM

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday evening that consumers and health care professionals should be wary of counterfeit versions of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries’ Adderall 30 milligram tablets that are being sold on the Internet.

Brand-name Adderall is made by Shire Pharmaceuticals and is approved to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD) and narcolepsy, but Teva and other companies make generic versions approved by the FDA. The prescription drug is classified as a controlled substance, meaning pharmacists are supposed to keep closer track of how and when they dispense the drug.

The FDA said its preliminary lab tests revealed that the counterfeit version of Teva’s Adderall 30 mg tablets contained the wrong active ingredients. The correct version of Adderall contains four active ingredients – dextroamphetamine saccharate, amphetamine aspartate, dextroamphetamine sulfate, and amphetamine sulfate. The FDA said the fake versions, instead of these active ingredients, contained tramadol and acetaminophen, which are ingredients to treat acute pain.

POSTED: Thursday, May 24, 2012, 10:49 AM

Teva Pharmaceuticals' new chief executive officer Jeremy Levin said Thursday morning that he has changed the leadership lineup in hopes of helping the global drug company regain more of the U.S. generic market in the face of increasing competition.

Chief financial officer Eyal Deshah said the company has "instituted a cost-cutting and efficiency program throughout Teva's operations," but a spokeswoman later said via email that there have been no layoffs, including in the Americas division, which encompasses facilities in the Philadelphia area.

Teva, which is based in Israel, has four regional divisions: Europe, the Americas, Asia and EMIA (Eastern Europe, Israel, the Middle East and Africa).

POSTED: Wednesday, May 23, 2012, 6:56 AM

UPDATE: Late Wednesday afternoon, an FDA panel voted 6-4 against recommending approval of the Johnson & Johnson blood thinning drug Xarelto for use in reducing blood clots.

As mentioned here earlier today, the panel was asked to wrestle with concerns that the drug caused fatal internal bleeding in too many patients in clinical trials and that too many participants dropped out of the trials without J&J figuring out what happened to them.

According to the Associated Press report from the hearing in Silver Spring, Md., the panel decided those concerns were too great to approve the application. The FDA does not have to follow panel votes, but usually does.

POSTED: Tuesday, May 22, 2012, 8:42 AM

The University City Science Center announced it has opened a fifth-round of applications for its QED Proof of Concept financing program for life sciences and digital health technology.

Researchers at 21 universities and research institutions in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware can compete for funding and business guidance in hopes turning their project into a new and profit.

The program will award up to $200,000 to up to four projects, with 16 other projects getting advice from insiders in the business.

POSTED: Monday, May 21, 2012, 8:40 AM

Auxilium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. of Malvern said Monday that it struck a marketing agreement with GlaxoSmithKline to help sell Testim, Auxilium's prescription testogerone gel for men.

GSK will use its much bigger sales force to promote the replacement therapy to doctors, particularly primary care physicians, who would write prescriptions for the drug. GSK already has a range of cardiovascular, metabolic and urology drugs that might be promoted to the same group of doctors.

GSK is based in London, but has a big Center City presence and facilities in the Philadelphia suburbs.

About this blog
David Sell blogs about the region's pharmaceutical industry. Follow him on Facebook.

For Inquirer.com. Portions of this blog may also be found in the Inquirer's Sunday Health Section.

Reach David at dsell@phillynews.com.

David Sell
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