PHARMACY

FDA approves multiple myeloma drug

BY Alaric DeArment

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new drug made by Celgene for treating the cancer multiple myeloma, the agency said Friday.

The FDA announced the approval of Pomalyst (pomalidomide) for patients whose disease has progressed after treatment with other cancer drugs.

Multiple myeloma is a form of blood cancer that mostly affects older people and comes from plasma cells in the bone marrow. About 21,700 Americans are diagnosed with it, and 10,710 die every year from the disease, according to the National Cancer Institute.

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PHARMACY

Va. pharmacy students visit state legislators

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — An annual event at the Virginia state General Assembly drew several students from a local pharmacy school.

Hampton University said 24 of its students visited the General Assembly in Richmond, Va., on Jan. 30 to participate in Virginia Pharmacy Day, organized every year by the Virginia Pharmacist Association. 

The event combined a health fair — with cholesterol, diabetes and blood pressure screenings — and legislative visits with state representatives to discuss pharmacy-related issues.

Members of the school’s National Community Pharmacists Association chapter developed informaitonal brochures on diabetes, high cholesterol and blood pressure to disseminate to state legislators.

"Meeting with the legislators and sitting in on the House and Senate sessions allows them an opportunity to voice their concerns and hopefully assist in the passage or denial of laws that impact the profession, and the provision of care to the patients we serve," Hampton University pharmacy professor Ebony Andrews said. "I want them to see that they have the power to make a difference if they take the time to get involved."

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FDA approves Warner Chilcott ulcerative colitis drug

BY Alaric DeArment

DUBLIN — The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new drug from Warner Chilcott for treating ulcerative colitis, the drug maker said.

Warner Chilcott announced the approval of mesalamine in the 400-mg strength.

The company plans to market the drug under the brand name Delzicol and launch it in March.

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