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Big pharma News

Op-Ed: The patent gene debate: who owns your genes?

The Federal Court of Australia has rejected an appeal of a ruling that allows companies to patent isolated human genes. This reignites the debate: who owns your genes - you or the company that extracts them?

U.K. drug companies more open on animal research

Several U.K. research groups have agreed to publicly disclose more information about their animal subjects and the number of animal experiments undertaken each year.

Is government needed for antibiotic development?

Major pharmaceutical companies are hindering the development of new antibiotics, according to the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (U.K.).

Drugmakers ordered to pay $9 billion for hiding cancer risks

Japan's biggest pharmaceutical company has been hit with a $6 billion penalty for concealing cancer risks associated with its Actos diabetes drug while Eli Lilly and Co, Takeda's co-defendant in the case, was ordered to pay $3 billion in punitive damages.

You might not be able to afford this life-saving Hepatitis C drug

There's a new drug regimen being touted as a potential cure for a dangerous liver virus that causes hepatitis C. But it costs $84,000 -- or $1,000 a pill.

'Big pharma' is not necessarily the most successful

The size of a company and its economic resources is not tied to getting a drug to market, according to a new report. The success of small companies sometimes challenges the might of "big pharma."

Op-Ed: Can 'Big Pharma' move towards greater transparency?

In a move described as 'transparent', the major drugs companies have agreed to share data from clinical trials with researchers, patients, and the public.

Campaign launched for African healthcare workers

A campaign has been launched to provide training for healthcare providers in sub-Saharan Africa. This is part of UN sustainable development initiative.

Big Pharma pays record money to medical doctors

Spending by major pharmaceutical companies to U.S. doctors exceeded $1 billion in 2012, according to some newly released figures.

Cancer drug prices 'could put patients at risk'

A group of medics have warned that the inflated prices charged by pharmaceutical firms for drugs to treat cancer are threatening patients' lives.

AstraZeneca announces massive job cuts

The pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca has announced two rounds of significant job cuts in an attempt to boots its profitability.

Missouri pharma company fined $2.5 million for polluting river

The pharma company Teva has been fined by U.S. authorities for pumping a fluorescent green discharge into a river at its plant in northeast Missouri.

Pharma companies funding Interpol to crack down on fake drugs

More than two dozen of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies have agreed to provide funding and support to Interpol to prevent the sale and distribution of counterfeit prescription drugs.

Johnson & Johnson and Novartis breach European antitrust rules

The European Commission is investigating ‘big pharma’ companies Johnson and Johnson and Novartis for a possible breach of antitrust laws.

Increase in U.S. prescription drug spending

U.S. consumers spent $263 billion on prescription drugs in 2011, a rise of 2.9% compared with 2010. Most of this increase relates to price increases imposed by ‘big pharma’.

Vodaphone and GSK collaborate on mobile vaccinations

Smartphone maker Voadaphone and the ‘big pharma’ company GSK have announced that they are to work together to help vaccinate more children against common infectious diseases in Africa.

Painkiller pills recalled due to higher dosage risk

The pharmaceutical company Mylan has voluntarily recalled three types of painkiller tablets due to the risk that the tablets are more potent than the label indicates. The risk is that consumers could overdose.

More compounding pharmacies closed in Massachusetts

Boston - Following the reports about the contaminated sterile medicines produced by the NEEC pharmacy, the State of Massachusetts has closed three more compounding pharmacies due to concerns over risks to patients.

Top Science Scandals of 2012

Each year the science magazine 'The Scientist' presents its major science scandals of the year. For 2012 there are some interesting finds.

Gold dust ‘missing’ from Pfizer Lab, Missouri

Around $700,000 worth of gold dust has been reported "missing" from a Pfizer medical research lab in Missouri. It is likely that the gold dust has been stolen.

GlaxoSmithKline loses appeal in French 'gay sex addict' case

A Frenchman suffering from Parkinson's disease who claimed he developed addictions to gambling and sex following treatment with a drug made by pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), has been awarded substantial damages.

FDA find insects in medicine production area

An inspection by the U.S. FDA has found leaking ceilings and insects inside a pharma facility used for the manufacture of medicines.

Fifty years on Grünenthal issue thalidomide apology

One of the most tragic cases associated with medicines was the thalidomide scandal of the 1950s and 1960s, where improperly tested medicines were given to pregnant women. Some fifty years on, the company responsible have issued a public apology.

Ineffective typhoid vaccine recalled

A vast stock of a typhoid vaccine, intended to immunize travelers against typhoid fever, has been recalled by the pharmaceutical company who manufactured it. The reason for the recall was that the vaccine simply did not work.

Drugs company ordered to pay patient $5 million

The ‘big pharma’ company Wyeth and Pharmacia & Upjohn have been ordered by a judge to pay a woman over $5 million after she developed breast cancer after using a hormone drug.

Drugs firm fined $2 million for sales fraud

The drugs company Altec Medical has been fined a $2 million for taking part in an illegal re-selling of drugs designed to circumvent accepted routes of sale.

Teva Phamaceutical investigated for business practices

Teva Pharmaceutical, a major drugs manufacturer and importer of medicines into the US, is the target of a federal bribery investigation.

Fake medicines ‘swamp’ European customs

The most valuable items seized by customs officials in Europe for the last year were counterfeit pharmaceutical products. Customs officers seized 27 million fake medicines in 2011, according to a recently released report.

New drug to combat ‘hidden’ HIV

Scientists have demonstrated the potential of new drug which can dislodge reservoirs of hidden HIV in patients receiving treatment.

Congress Passes Generic Drug Act

In the US new law has been passed which is designed to get cheaper, generic drugs to the market faster and as a means for the US FDA to raise money by charging the manufacturers of generic drug products.
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GlaxoSmithKline headquaters in Brentford, London, England
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A new report suggests the pharmaceutical industry played a major role in the 2009 swine flu pandemic...
A new report suggests the pharmaceutical industry played a major role in the 2009 swine flu pandemic declaration.
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