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Amgen completes Kai acquisition

BY Allison Cerra

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — Amgen has completed its acquisition of Kai Pharmaceuticals, a privately held company based in South San Francisco, Calif.

The deal, first announced in April, is valued at $315 million. The deal also includes the acquisition of KAI-4169, an experimental drug Kai is developing for secondary hyperparathyroidism in patients with chronic kidney disease who are on dialysis. KAI previously reported compelling mid-stage clinical results for KAI-4169 in this indication.


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Lilly gains U.S. pediatric exclusivity for Cymbalta

BY Allison Cerra

INDIANAPOLIS — Eli Lilly announced that it has met Food and Drug Administration requirements for pediatric exclusivity for its antidepressant medication.

Based on this decision by the FDA, Lilly has gained an additional six months of U.S. market exclusivity for Cymbalta (duloxetine hydrochloride), which now will expire in December 2013.

Lilly noted, however, that the approval of pediatric exclusivity does not mean that the serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor is approved for use in pediatric patients. Cymbalta only is approved for use in adults ages 18 years and older. Based on study results, Lilly will not be seeking a pediatric indication for Cymbalta, the drug maker said.


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Yakult Light to enter market

BY Allison Cerra

TORRANCE, Calif. — Yakult USA is introducing a probiotic drink to the U.S. market.

Yakult Light, which has nearly two-thirds less sugar and one-third fewer calories than regular Yakult, contains active probiotic bacteria called Lactobacillus casei strain Shirota. The product also is made with natural sweeteners and natural flavors, and is free of preservatives, gluten and high-fructose corn syrup. Unlike regular Yakult products, Yakult Light will tout blue and white packaging, with the red Yakult logo.

Yakult Light can be found on store shelves as early as mid-July, the company said.

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