PHARMACY

GSK sponsors community health event in St. Louis, part of nationwide tour

BY Alaric DeArment

ST. LOUIS — GlaxoSmithKline is sponsoring a national campaign to investigate ways to build healthier communities in the United States and has made its latest stop, in St. Louis, the company said Wednesday.

The program, "A Conversation on Community Health," began in Philadelphia in September, with The Atlantic magazine acting as host and GSK underwriting it. According to the St. Louis Regional Health Commission, about 31% of adults in the city are obese, while the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America ranks the city among the 10 most challenging places to live with asthma, though the health commission estimates that 11.4% children there have been diagnosed with it.

"At GSK, we’re always asking ourselves what we can do to be a better partner in the communities in which we serve patients to ensure that they have the resources and opportunities they need to live healthier lives," GSK president for North America Pharmaceuticals Deirdre Connelly said. "While there are many innovative and effective local community programs doing great work across St. Louis and in other cities across the United States, we believe it’s possible to work together even more effectively to drive greater collective impact."

The events are designed to find ways health organizations, public officials, advocates and citizens can improve health at the local level. In St. Louis, The Atlantic will convene a summit of regional experts in medicine, public health, academia, government, business and philanthropy, including a panel discussion featuring such people as St. Louis Regional Health Commission CEO Robert Fruend; St. Louis Department of Health commissioner Melba Moore and others.


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PHARMACY

J&J subsidiary seeks approval for Type 2 diabetes drug

BY Alaric DeArment

RARITAN, N.J. — A subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson is seeking regulatory approval for a new Type 2 diabetes drug.

J&J division Janssen Research & Development announced Wednesday that it had filed with the Food and Drug Administration for a drug combining the experimental drug canagliflozin and immediate-release metformin, a common generic drug for diabetes.

The company also submitted a regulatory approval application to the FDA for canagliflozin in May 2012.


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ViroPharma launches hereditary angioedema campaign

BY Alaric DeArment

EXTON, Pa. — Drug maker ViroPharma has launched an education campaign focused on a rare, debilitating and life-threatening genetic disorder.

The company announced Wednesday the launch of the unbranded campaign focused on hereditary angioedema, particularly the emotional and psychological burden faced by patients with the disease, which results from deficiency of the human plasma protein C1 inhibitor and causes attacks of swelling and pain.

The company said HAE patients can experience multiple attacks per month, but attacks are highly variable and unpredictable, causing patients to experience anxiety, depression and isolation.

"Through this campaign, we hope to illustrate that HAE is not just an acute clinical condition, but can also be an emotional and psychological burden to patients," ViroPharma associate director of marketing Frank Nazzario said. "HAE is a life-altering disease that interferes with work, school, travel and social life."


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