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AstraZeneca Partners on miRNA Inhibitors

AstraZeneca is paying Regulus Therapeutics $28 million up front as part of a strategic alliance focused on the discovery and development of microRNA therapeutics against three specified targets in the fields of cardiovascular metabolic diseases and oncology. The payment from AstraZeneca will be made in the form of an equity investment and up front cash. Under terms of the deal Regulus will lead preclinical development,...

Firms Flock to Epic’s CTC Platform

Cancer diagnostics specialist Epic Sciences reported signing collaborations with six pharma companies centered on the application of its circulating tumor cell (CTC) capture and analysis technology to identify biomarkers that can serve as the basis of companion diagnostics. The collaborations involve 12 clinical trials that are part of 40 distinct projects measuring 18 different markers. Epic was spun out of the...

FDA Approves Tudorza Pressair for COPD

The FDA on Monday approved Tudorza™ Pressair™ (aclidinium bromide inhalation powder) for long-term maintenance treatment of bronchospasm associated with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), including chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Forest Laboratories is distributing the drug in the U.S. under a license with Barcelona, Spain-based Almirall; the two companies co-developed the drug. Tudorza is...

Pfizer-Janssen Alzheimer’s Treatment Misses ...

Pfizer said late Monday that the co-primary clinical endpoints were not met in the Phase III trial of an Alzheimer’s treatment being led by an entity of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Pharmaceuticals unit. Janssen Alzheimer Immunotherapy (AI) R&D joined with Pfizer in setting change in cognitive performance and functional performance compared to placebo as the co-primary endpoints in Study 302, a Phase III...

Merck Steps Further into HIV Space

Merck & Co. expanded its reach into the HIV arena by signing two licensing agreements for investigational drug candidates. One deal is with Chimerix, based in Research Triangle Park, NC, and the other is with Yamasa of Choshi, Japan. Merck is also planning to advance an internally developed HIV candidate, MK-1439, into a Phase IIb trial. “Despite the tremendous advances made over the past 20 years, there...

Scientists Identify Target for Obesity and Atheros...

Scientists claim that an enzyme already implicated in the control of tumorigenesis through p53 activation may also directly act to control obesity and atherosclerosis. Wip1 phosphatase is a known negative regulator of ataxia telangiectasia mutated (Atm)-dependent signaling, and knocking out the Wip1 gene, which is amplified in a range of primary human cancers, has been shown to result in tumor resistance in a number of...
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