Abbott plans to split into 2 companies; Cleveland BioLabs Announces Opening Of New IND Print E-mail
By Staff and Wire Reports   
Wednesday, 19 October 2011 17:04
Below is a look at some of the headlines for companies that made news in the healthcare sector on October 19, 2011.

Abbott Laboratories, (NYSE:ABT), long known for selling a mix of drugs, medical implants and baby formula, said Wednesday it will spin off its branded drug business and become two separate companies with more distinct identities.

The split-up, announced Wednesday marks an abrupt shift for the 123-year old company, which sells a broad range of products from stents to arthritis drugs to contact lens solution. While many pharmaceutical companies weathered losses as the patents on their blockbuster drugs expired, Abbott has continued to post double-digit sales growth, chiefly because of its anti-inflammatory drug Humira. The injectable drug posted sales of $6.5 billion last year, nearly a fifth of the company's total sales.

But Abbott's reliance on the drug has been a concern for investors, overshadowing the company's performance across other businesses. Humira loses patent protection in 2016 and the company has largely been unsuccessful in developing new therapies to replace the drug.

CEO Miles White suggested Wednesday the split is about crafting two companies with clearer messages for investors.  "What happened here is the pharma piece got so big, and is so different, that these two investments make sense separately, and both are of a critical mass and size that they have great sustainability going forward as independent companies," White told analyst on a teleconference call.

Analysts said the split makes sense given that the company has evolved into two separate businesses, each with different strategies and outlooks.

News of the company's breakup overshadowed Abbott's disclosure that it set aside a mammoth $1.5 billion to cover a potential settlement for illegal drug marketing.

Company shares rose 68 cents to $53.12 in afternoon trading.


Cleveland BioLabs, Inc., (NASDAQ:CBLI), announced a new Investigational New Drug (IND) application for clinical testing of CBLB502 in a variety of oncologic patient settings has been opened with the FDA.

The Company also announced that the Investigational Review Board (IRB) at Roswell Park Cancer Institute has approved a protocol for the first trial of CBLB502 in advanced cancer patients. Alex Adjei, M.D., Ph.D., FACP, Chairman of the Department of Medicine and Senior Vice President of Clinical Research at Roswell Park Cancer Institute,will lead the trial as Principal Investigator.

This trial is based on results from preclinical studies indicating that CBLB502, a drug under development to reduce the risk of death following exposure to radiation, has anticancer properties when administered as a single agent in a number of experimental tumor models (colon and lung cancer, lymphoma and melanoma) in animals, particularly in tumors localized in the liver.

The study will evaluate the safety and pharmacokinetic profile of CBLB502 in patients with advanced cancers. Up to forty-eight patients are expected to be enrolled in multiple trial cohorts to determine the safety, tolerability, and maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of repeated administrations of CBLB502. Evaluations for any preliminary evidence of anticancer activity of CBLB502 in advanced cancer patients will also be performed.

Also Wednesday:

ADVENTRX Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NYSE Amex: ANX) today announced that the Company's Chief Executive Officer, Brian M. Culley, will present at the 10th Annual BIOInvestor Forum Conference on Wednesday, October 26, 2011 at 1:30 p.m. Pacific time, in the Sea Cliff Salon at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco.

Allied Healthcare International Inc. (NASDAQ: AHCI), a leading homecare provider of health and social care in the United Kingdom and Ireland, announced today that its shareholders had voted to adopt the merger agreement with Saga Group Limited at a special meeting of shareholders held today.

today announced the appointment of Anthony (Tony) Hooper, executive vice president, Global Commercial Operations, effective October 26th.

BioCryst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:BCRX) today announced that its third quarter 2011 financial results will be released on Wednesday, November 2, 2011.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE:BMY) today announced a series of related changes within its Senior Management Team.

Cannabis Science, Inc. (OTCBB: CBIS), a pioneering US biotech company developing pharmaceutical cannabis products, is pleased to announce that the California Medical Association has adopted an official policy recommending legalizing and regulating cannabis and American History is made, for the first time over 50% of Americans are supporting legalizing Marijuana in new Washington Gallop Poll.

Cell Therapeutics, Inc. (CTI) (NASDAQ and MTA: CTIC) management will present at the 10th Annual BIO Investor Forum on Tuesday, October 25th at 11:30 a.m. Pacific/ 2:30 p.m. Eastern/ 8:30 p.m. Central European time in the Presidio Room of the Palace Hotel in San Francisco.

Chembio Diagnostics, Inc. (OTCQB: CEMI) (PINKSHEETS: CEMI), which develops, manufactures, markets and licenses point-of-care diagnostic tests, reported that its Dual Path Platform (DPP®) technology has been or will soon be granted patent protection in a number of major markets including Japan, with the Company recently being notified that the DPP® patent has been allowed in Japan and will therefore be issued there shortly.

General Cannabis, Inc. (OTCBB: CANA) (OTCQX: CANA), a technology-based Internet marketing services company, today announced the launch of a new international grow shop directory website

Given Imaging (NASDAQ: GIVN) today announced that the company will host conference calls on Wednesday, November 2, 2011 to discuss third quarter 2011 financial results.

Intellect Neurosciences, Inc. (OTCPK: ILNS) announces that Dr. Daniel G. Chain, chairman and CEO will be presenting at the 10TH Annual BIO Investor Forum.

IntelliCell BioSciences, Inc. (OTCQB: SVFC) (PINKSHEETS: SVFC) ("IntelliCell" or the "Company"), a leader in regenerative medicine and the manufacturing of stromal vascular fraction (SVF) containing adipose derived adult stem cells, announced today it has appointed pediatrician, Dr. Sigmund Norr to its Board of Advisors.

InSite Vision Incorporated (OTCBB:INSV) announced today that it will report financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2011 on Thursday, October 27, 2011.

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:LGND) announced today that it has entered into a Captisol license agreement with SAGE Therapeutics, Inc. for the development and commercialization of Captisol-enabled® therapeutics for a broad range of debilitating central nervous system (CNS) conditions.

Luminex Corporation (NASDAQ: LMNX) today announced that it has been recognized in Deloitte's 2011 Technology Fast 500™, a ranking of the fastest growing technology, media, telecommunications, life sciences and clean technology companies in North America.

NeoGenomics, Inc. (NASD OTCBB: NGNM), a leading provider of cancer-focused genetic testing services today reported its results for the third quarter 2011.

Novelos Therapeutics, Inc.(OTCBB: NVLT), a pharmaceutical company developing novel drugs for treatment and diagnosis of cancer, today announced that on October 17, 2011, Judge Judith Fabricant granted Novelos' motion for judgment on the pleadings in the action brought in the Business Litigation Session of the Massachusetts Superior Court for Suffolk County entitled Novelos Therapeutics, Inc. v. ZAO BAM and ZAO BAM Research Laboratories (Civil Action No. 10-3801-BLS1).

Nutra Pharma Corporation (OTCBB: NPHC)
, a biotechnology company that is developing treatments for Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV/AIDS), Adrenomyeloneuropathy (AMN) and Pain, announced today that its wholly-owned subsidiary, ReceptoPharm, has received approval from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for its patent describing the composition of matter and the use of neurotoxins for the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

Nuvilex, Inc. (OTCQB:NVLX)
, announced today that their affiliate in Singapore, SG Austria, has combined cell and gene therapies in concert with its live cell encapsulation technology.

OPKO Health, Inc. (NYSE:OPK) today announced that Claros Diagnostics and Columbia University have been named as runner-up in the Medical Devices category of this year’s prestigious Wall Street Journal Technology Innovation Awards.

Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) (NYSE: SAI) announced today it was awarded a contract by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to provide preclinical services for the development of biopharmaceutical products for infectious diseases.

Verisante Technology, Inc. (TSX VENTURE:VRS) (OTCQX:VRSEF) (PINK SHEETS:VRSEF) (FRANKFURT:V3T) (the "Company" or "Verisante"), a leader in cancer imaging technology, announced today that it has obtained a licence from Health Canada to market and sell the Verisante Aura™, an innovative, non-invasive medical device for the early detection of skin cancer.

Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (Nasdaq: VRTX) today announced the submission of a New Drug Application (NDA) to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for KALYDECO™ (VX-770, ivacaftor), a medicine in development that targets the defective protein that causes cystic fibrosis (CF).

ViroPharma Incorporated's (Nasdaq: VPHM) third quarter financial results for 2011 are expected to be released on Thursday, October 27, 2011 before the open of the U.S. financial markets.

YM BioSciences Inc. (NYSE Amex: YMI) (TSX: YM) today announced that Catherine Mackey, Ph. D., former Senior Vice President of Worldwide Research and Development for Pfizer Inc., and Nicole Onetto, M.D., Deputy Director of the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR), have been proposed for nomination to the Company's Board of Directors.

ZIOPHARM Oncology, Inc. (Nasdaq: ZIOP), announced today that Jonathan Lewis, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer, will present at the 10th Annual BIO Investor Forum on Tuesday, October 25th, 2011, at 9:00 am Pacific Time, at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco, CA.

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