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CDC: 2011-2012 influenza season lowest on record

BY Michael Johnsen

ATLANTA — The 2011-2012 influenza season was one of the mildest and latest seasons on record, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The peak percentage of outpatient visits for influenza-like illnesses of 2.4% was the lowest reported since the system began in its current format in 1997. The peak percentage of visits for ILI during those 14 seasons ranged from 3.2% for the 2002-2003 season to 7.7% during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic.

During the 2011-2012 season, the CDC reported that influenza activity peaked in the week ended March 17.

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Survey: Summertime BBQ a challenge for many heartburn sufferers

BY Michael Johnsen

CINCINNATI — Summer is the time when barbecue aficionados are most likely to feel heartburn’s effects, according to a new study released by Procter & Gamble on behalf of its Prilosec OTC brand Tuesday.

Nearly half (46%) of Americans with frequent heartburn identified barbecue season as the time of year when they are most likely to suffer from heartburn symptoms. And more than half (63%) of chronic heartburn sufferers admitted that their condition frequently interferes with them having fun.

One-in-3 people surveyed reported they had avoided a barbecue because of their heartburn symptoms; 74% reported it would be worse to forget their heartburn medicine than their sun block when going on vacation this summer; and 60% have had to adjust plans while on vacation due to heartburn symptoms.

 


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Elizabeth Arden acquires licenses for Justin Bieber, Nicki Minaj fragrance brands

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — Elizabeth Arden has acquired from Give Back Brands the global licenses and certain related assets for the Justin Bieber and Nicki Minaj fragrance brands.

Someday, the first fragrance from popstar Justin Bieber, launched in U.S department stores in spring 2011. The second fragrance, Justin Bieber’s Girlfriend, is launching in U.S. department stores this summer. The first fragrance from R&B/hip hop artist Nicki Minaj is scheduled to launch at U.S. department stores this fall.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The company stated that it expects the transaction to be accretive to earnings beginning in the first half of fiscal 2013. Excluding the impact of this transaction, the company confirmed its fiscal 2012 guidance for net sales growth of 5% to 5.5% compared with the prior fiscal year, net income per diluted share of $1.95 to $2 and a gross margin increase of 200 to 250 basis points over fiscal 2011.

This guidance also excludes any expenses related to the previously announced acquisition of the Ed Hardy, True Religion and BCBGMaxAzria fragrance licenses, the company stated.

Elizabeth Arden’s brand portfolio includes Elizabeth Arden skin care, color and fragrance products; Prevage anti-aging formulas; the celebrity fragrance brands of Britney Spears, Elizabeth Taylor, Justin Bieber, Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, Taylor Swift, and Usher; the designer fragrance brands of Juicy Couture, Alfred Sung, BCBGMaxAzria, Ed Hardy, Geoffrey Beene, Halston, John Varvatos, Kate Spade, Lucky Brand, Rocawear and True Religion; and the lifestyle fragrance brands Curve, Giorgio Beverly Hills and PS Fine Cologne.

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