|Medicis shares gain on generic delay. PDL BioPharma settles with Novartis. After the bell: Novavax soars on HHS contract|
|By Staff and Wire Reports|
|Monday, 28 February 2011 19:45|
After the bell, shares of Novavax, Inc. (Nasdaq:NVAX) soared more than 38% after it was reported that the company has received a contract from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for the development of flu vaccines. The contract is worth $97 million over three years and carries an option to extend the contract for an additional two years for a total potential contract value of $179 million.
"The 2009 H1N1 pandemic demonstrated the need for technologies that can provide vaccines more rapidly," HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said in a statement Monday. "These next-generation flu vaccines hold the potential to be even more effective and to make the first and last doses of vaccine available sooner than existing flu vaccines by weeks and months which can save more lives during a pandemic as well as during seasonal flu outbreaks."
Shares of Novavax were up 26 cents or 11% to $2.60 in Monday trading. In extended trading, shares added 99 cents to $3.59.
Shares of Medicis (NYSE:MRX) surged more than 24% Monday after it was reported late Friday that the company has settled with Teva Pharmaceuticals, delaying marketing of a generic version of its flagship acne product, Solodyn, until 2018. As part of the settlement, Teva will pay royalties to Medicis to produce 65mg and 115mg strength versions of Solodyn.
Shares jumped $6.27 to $32.09.
PDL BioPharma, Inc. (PDL) (Nasdaq:PDLI) gained more than 14% today after the company announced that it has resolved all disputes with Novartis. According to the settlement, Novartis has agreed not to oppose PDL's patent in Europe for an eye-care drug using PDLI technology. In turn, PDLI has agreed to share a portion of European sales of the drug, Lucentis. Novartis agreed to withdraw its challenge in the European Patent Office of PDL's Queen patent. PDL will continue to pursue its claims against Genentech Inc. and Roche Ltd.
More than 15 million shares traded hands as the stock gained 69 cents to $5.55.
Nile Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq:NLTX), jumped more than 7% Monday after the company focused on the development of novel therapeutics for heart failure patients, announced that it will collaborate with Medtronic, Inc. (NYSE:MDT) on the clinical development of Nile's proprietary natriuretic peptide, cenderitide (formerly CD-NP), for heart failure and renal disease applications.
"We are very pleased to partner with Medtronic on cenderitide," said Joshua Kazam, Chief Executive Officer of Nile Therapeutics. "This collaboration will be an important step on our path to developing cenderitide as a potential new therapy for patients with cardiovascular and renal disease following hospitalization for acute heart failure."
Shares traded as high as $0.72 before settling the day at $0.60 cents, up 4 cents.
Aeterna Zentaris Inc. (NASDAQ:AEZS) (TSX:AEZ.to) today announced that it had received a net sales milestone of $2.5 million from Cowen Healthcare Royalty Partners, L.P. This milestone was payable pursuant to the previously announced sale to Cowen Royalty of Aeterna Zentaris' rights to royalties on future net sales of Cetrotide, covered by the Company's license agreement with Merck Serono, and was contingent on 2010 net sales of Cetrotide reaching a specified level.
Anika Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq:ANIK) today announced that Kansas City-based Visco Technologies LLC will serve for the next five years as a U.S. distributor for ANIKAVISC, the Company’s viscoelastic for cataract surgery. Anika recently received U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for the ANIKAVISC product. For more than 20 years, the Company has manufactured premium ophthalmic viscoelastics for companies including Bausch & Lomb, Staar Surgical and HOYA Surgical Optics.
Juergen Engel, Ph.D., President and CEO of Aeterna Zentaris stated, "We are pleased to have reached this $2.5 million milestone which will be incremental to advance perifosine, AEZS-108 and other innovative oncology compounds from our extensive product pipeline."
Derma Sciences, Inc. (Nasdaq:DSCI), a medical device and pharmaceutical company focused on advanced wound care, today announced receipt of 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the Company’s patent-pending MEDIHONEY® Gel Wound and Burn Dressing. This latest MEDIHONEY line extension is dispensed from a tube and is comprised of Active Manuka (Leptospermum) honey blended with natural-based gelling agents.
FUJIFILM Corporation and Merck (NYSE:MRK), known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, today announced they have entered into a definitive agreement by which Fujifilm will acquire the Merck BioManufacturing Network, a leading provider of contract manufacturing and development services for the biopharmaceutical industry and wholly owned by Merck.
"Fujifilm continues to build upon its ongoing commitment to delivering pharmaceutical business," said Shigetaka Komori, president and chief executive officer of FUJIFILM Corporation. "This acquisition provides an important addition to our pharmaceutical business with diverse capabilities and technical expertise in production of protein therapeutics."
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:REGN) today announced that in a second Phase 3 study (PRE-SURGE 2) in gout patients initiating allopurinol therapy, ARCALYST (rilonacept) met the primary and all secondary study endpoints. The primary endpoint was the number of gout flares per patient over the 16-week treatment period.
Santarus, Inc. (NASDAQ:SNTS) and biotech company Pharming Group NV (NYSE Euronext:PHARM) today announced the receipt of a "refusal to file" letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the RHUCIN (recombinant human C1 inhibitor) Biologics License Application (BLA) submitted by Pharming. In the letter the FDA indicated that the BLA was not sufficiently complete to enable a critical medical review.
Synta Pharmaceuticals Corp. (NASDAQ:SNTA), a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing, and commercializing small molecule drugs to treat severe medical conditions, today announced that a Phase 2b/3 clinical trial of ganetespib (STA-9090) in combination with docetaxel in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) will be initiated in the second quarter of 2011.
Trius Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq:TSRX) today announced results from its Phase 1 clinical trial to evaluate the ability of torezolid to penetrate into the lung for potential use to treat lung infections. In this study a 200 mg dose of torezolid phosphate was administered orally once-daily for three days to healthy adult volunteers. The trial achieved its primary goal of establishing the steady-state plasma pharmacokinetics and distribution of active drug into epithelial lining fluid (ELF). The same 200 mg once-daily dose of torezolid phosphate is currently being tested in a Phase 3 clinical trial for acute bacterial skin and skin structure infections (ABSSSI).
BIOLASE Technology, Inc, (NASDAQ: BLTI) , the World's leading dental laser manufacturer and distributor, today announced that it completed a very successful showing at the 146th Chicago Dental Society Midwinter Meeting, one of the largest dental shows in the country.