Content about Specialty pharmacy

January 13, 2014

A drug maker has started a program to find the genetic determinants of human disease and speed the discovery and development of new drugs. The program includes a five-year project that it said would be one of the largest of its kind in terms of the number of patients involved.

TARRYTOWN, N.Y. — A drug maker has started a program to find the genetic determinants of human disease and speed the discovery and development of new drugs. The program includes a five-year project that it said would be one of the largest of its kind in terms of the number of patients involved.

January 13, 2014

Gov. Rick Snyder of Michigan has signed into law a bill that will allow medical marijuana to be sold in pharmacies if the federal government legalizes it for that purpose, according to published reports.

NEW YORK — Gov. Rick Snyder of Michigan has signed into law a bill that will allow medical marijuana to be sold in pharmacies if the federal government legalizes it for that purpose, according to published reports.

January 13, 2014

New York state has begun to legalize medical use of marijuana, albeit in limited form, according to published reports.

NEW YORK — New York state has begun to legalize medical use of marijuana, albeit in limited form, according to published reports.

Currently, 20 states and the District of Columbia allow the dispensing of marijuana for medical use, two of which — Colorado and Washington — have legalized recreational use, while Maryland allows medical use as a legal defense in criminal cases.

January 10, 2014

The Food and Drug Administration has approved two drugs made by GlaxoSmithKline for use together in patients with advanced melanoma that can't be removed by surgery or has spread to other parts of the body, the agency said Friday.

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved two drugs made by GlaxoSmithKline for use together in patients with advanced melanoma that can't be removed by surgery or has spread to other parts of the body, the agency said Friday.

The FDA announced the new approval for Mekinist (trametinib) and Tafinlar (dabrafenib). The agency originally approved the two drugs for use as single agents for the same indication in May 2013.

January 10, 2014

The Food and Drug Administraiton has approved a liquid formulation of an HIV drug made by Merck, the company said.

WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. — The Food and Drug Administraiton has approved a liquid formulation of an HIV drug made by Merck, the company said.

Merck announced the approval of Isentress (raltegravir) for oral suspension, aimed at small children with HIV. The drug may be used by patients as young as four weeks, and the full line of formulations of Isentress now includes the orlal suspension, as well as chewable tablets and film--coated tablets. The company plans to launch the oral suspension in the third quarter of this year.

January 9, 2014

Administering high-touch, expensive and complex medications to patients intravenously in their homes — or in a setting other than a hospital — is essentially a large-scale bid to “reduce costs by transferring non-self-administered drugs to the most cost-effective and clinically appropriate site of care,” said pharmacist Michael Einodshofer, senior director of specialty strategy and innovation at Walgreens Specialty Pharmacy.

Administering high-touch, expensive and complex medications to patients intravenously in their homes — or in a setting other than a hospital — is essentially a large-scale bid to “reduce costs by transferring non-self-administered drugs to the most cost-effective and clinically appropriate site of care,” said pharmacist Michael Einodshofer, senior director of specialty strategy and innovation at Walgreens Specialty Pharmacy.

January 9, 2014

Forest Labs will buy privately owned drug maker Aptalis for $2.9 billion, Forest said Thursday.

NEW YORK — Forest Labs will buy privately owned drug maker Aptalis for $2.9 billion, Forest said Thursday.

Aptalis specializes in making drugs for gastrointestinal disorders and cystic fibrosis, with sales of $688 million in fiscal year 2013. More than 60% of its sales come from the ulcer treatment Carafate (sucralfate), the inflammatory bowel disease treatment Canasa (melamine) and the cystic fibrosis drug Zenpep (pancrelipase).

January 9, 2014

Mylan has launched a generic drug for preventing rejection of transplanted organs, the company said Thursday.

PITTSBURGH — Mylan has launched a generic drug for preventing rejection of transplanted organs, the company said Thursday.

The generic drug maker announced the launch of mycophenolic acid delayed-release tablets in the 180-mg and 360-mg strengths. The drug is a generic version of Novartis' Myfortic. As the first company to file a completed regulatory approval application for the generic, Mylan is entitled to 180 days in which to compete exclusively against Novartis' product before the Food and Drug Administration can approve additional generic versions.

January 9, 2014

Vulnerable patients, including seniors and cancer patients, suffer from lack of access to needed painkillers as efforts to combat diversion and misuse of controlled substances often result in drugs not getting into the hands of those who need them, according to a new pharmacist survey by the National Community Pharmacists Association.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. —Vulnerable patients, including seniors and cancer patients, suffer from lack of access to needed painkillers as efforts to combat diversion and misuse of controlled substances often result in drugs not getting into the hands of those who need them, according to a new pharmacist survey by the National Community Pharmacists Association. 

January 9, 2014

The clinical development director of Rx.com Pharmacy Benefit Coalition is among the first few dozen pharmacists to receive a specialty pharmacy certification, the company said.

FORT WORTH, Texas — The clinical development director of Rx.com Pharmacy Benefit Coalition is among the first few dozen pharmacists to receive a specialty pharmacy certification, the company said.

January 9, 2014

A confluence of healthcare trends has expanded a lucrative, if challenging, opportunity for pharmacies able to invest in its potential.

A confluence of healthcare trends has expanded a lucrative, if challenging, opportunity for pharmacies able to invest in its potential.

January 8, 2014

Takeda Pharmaceutical has started a late-stage clinical trial program of its experimental drug for inflammatory bowel disease in Japan, the company said Wednesday.

OSAKA, Japan — Takeda Pharmaceutical has started a late-stage clinical trial program of its experimental drug for inflammatory bowel disease in Japan, the company said Wednesday.

Takeda announced the start of two phase-3 trials of MLN0002 (vedolizumab) in patients with severe ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. The trials are designed to find out the efficacy, safety and effects on the body of the drug, particularly to see if patients show a response after 10 weeks of treatment and disease remission after 60 weeks.

January 2, 2014

A new mobile app-driven social network devoted to medical marijuana has attracted $150,000 in seed money from an investment group.

DENVER — A new mobile app-driven social network devoted to medical marijuana has attracted $150,000 in seed money from an investment group.

MassRoots announced Thursday that it had closed the seed investment from members of the ArcView Group. The social network, launched in July 2013, has more than 25,000 active users. MassRoots allows users to maintain their privacy and anonymity by not requiring their name, email or phone number to join.

January 2, 2014

The number of new drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration fell by more than 30% in 2013 compared with 2012, according to agency records.

NEW YORK — The number of new drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration fell by more than 30% in 2013 compared with 2012, according to agency records.

December 30, 2013

The Food and Drug Administration has declined to approve a drug made by Genzyme Corp. for certain forms of multiple sclerosis, the company said Monday.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — The Food and Drug Administration has declined to approve a drug made by Genzyme Corp. for certain forms of multiple sclerosis, the company said Monday.

December 30, 2013

The owners of the compounding pharmacy linked to a nationwide meningitis outbreak that has killed dozens and sickened hundreds have agreed to set up a fund of more than $100 million to compensate victims and creditors.

BOSTON — The owners of the compounding pharmacy linked to a nationwide meningitis outbreak that has killed dozens and sickened hundreds have agreed to set up a fund of more than $100 million to compensate victims and creditors.

Legal firm Brown Rudnick announced that the owners of the New England Compounding Center had reached a settlement with bankruptcy trustee Paul Moore, its creditors and the victims to set up the fund, money from which will be distributed to creditors as well as victims who received injections of tainted steroids from NECC.

December 27, 2013

The Food and Drug Administration has approved an HIV pill made by Gilead Sciences for patients who are switching from other therapy regimens, the company said.

FOSTER CITY, Calif. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved an HIV pill made by Gilead Sciences for patients who are switching from other therapy regimens, the company said.

Gilead said the FDA approved its single-pill regimen, Complera (emtricitabine; rilpivirine; tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) for use in adult patients who have suppressed their infections on stable antiretroviral regimens and are replacing their current regimens. The FDA originally approved the drug in 2011.

December 27, 2013

Drug maker Shire is extending the deadline for its offer to buy Exton, Pa.-based ViroPharma for $4.2 billion, Shire said Friday.

DUBLIN — Drug maker Shire is extending the deadline for its offer to buy Exton, Pa.-based ViroPharma for $4.2 billion, Shire said Friday.

The company said it had extended the expiration date of its tender offer for ViroPharma until Jan. 9. The offer had previously been planned to expire on Thursday. Shire announced the $50-per-share offer last month.

December 26, 2013

In the late 1980s, “Star Trek: The Next Generation” introduced viewers to the replicator, which could make food, beverages and other items materialize out of thin air.

In the late 1980s, “Star Trek: The Next Generation” introduced viewers to the replicator, which could make food, beverages and other items materialize out of thin air.

The idea of Captain Picard instantaneously getting his favorite brew by telling a machine “Tea, Earl Grey, hot” won’t happen any time soon. But with the advent of 3-D printing, it’s a lot closer to reality than one might think.

December 26, 2013

Now, a year later, as the company completes its 50th year in business and the country awaits a period of change in health care unlike anything seen in at least that time, CVS Caremark executives are quite confident that its unique hybrid structure and its ability to leverage the three core parts of its business — either individually or together, in varying combinations to serve a multitude of needs — aligns more effectively with the long-term trends in health care and puts the company in a unique position at a singular moment in history.

In 2012, DSN presented an in-depth report on CVS Caremark’s integrated pharmacy business model — part big retail pharmacy chain, part big PBM, part big retail clinic operator — and the innovative products and solutions that were coming out of the organization, particularly where the three parts of the business came together, its “integration sweet spots,” as company executives referred to them.

December 23, 2013

Two experimental drugs under development by Biogen Idec are effective in reducing bleeding episodes in patients with two forms of hemophilia when administered as a preventive treatment, while also reducing the need for frequent injections, according to late-stage clinical trial data.

NEW YORK — Two experimental drugs under development by Biogen Idec are effective in reducing bleeding episodes in patients with two forms of hemophilia when administered as a preventive treatment, while also reducing the need for frequent injections, according to late-stage clinical trial data.

December 23, 2013

The Food and Drug Administration has approved revisions to the labeling of a leukemia drug made by Ariad Pharmaceuticals that allow the company to resume selling it, the company said.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved revisions to the labeling of a leukemia drug made by Ariad Pharmaceuticals that allow the company to resume selling it, the company said.

December 23, 2013

The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new treatment made by Danish drug maker Novo Nordiskfor a rare, genetic bleeding disorder, the agency said Monday.

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new treatment made by Danish drug maker Novo Nordiskfor a rare, genetic bleeding disorder, the agency said Monday.

December 23, 2013

The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new drug made by United Therapeutics for treating pulmonary arterial hypertension, the company said Monday.

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new drug made by United Therapeutics for treating pulmonary arterial hypertension, the company said Monday.

The FDA approved Orenitram (treprostinil) extended-release tablets for treating certain PAH patients to improve exercise capacity. PAH is a disease in which abnormally high blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs causes the right side of the heart to work harder than normal, according to the National Library of Medicine.

December 19, 2013

Bristol-Myers Squibb is selling its diabetes business to AstraZeneca for up to $4.3 billion as part of an effort to focus more on specialty drugs, the company said Thursday.

NEW YORK — Bristol-Myers Squibb is selling its diabetes business to AstraZeneca for up to $4.3 billion as part of an effort to focus more on specialty drugs, the company said Thursday.

BMS said AstraZeneca would pay $2.7 billion upfront, as well as up to $1.4 billion in milestone payments and up to $225 million on the condition of certain assets being sold. The companies have had a diabetes drug-development partnership since 2007.