PHARMACY

Impax licenses migraine drug rights from AstraZeneca

BY Alaric DeArment

HAYWARD, Calif. — Impax Pharmaceuticals said Wednesday that it obtained exclusive U.S. commercial rights to a drug for migraine headaches made by AstraZeneca.

Impax Pharmaceuticals, the branded drugs arm of Impax Labs, said it would make quarterly payments of $130 million to AstraZeneca during 2012, afterward paying the Anglo-Swedish drug maker tiered royalties on future sales of the drug Zomig (zolmitriptan). Impax is licensing Zomig’s orally disintegrating tablet and nasal spray formulations. Zomig had sales of $163 million during the 12-month period ended in September 2011, according to Impax.

"We are pleased to obtain a licensing agreement for Zomig, consistent with our goal to increase the revenue and financial contribution of our Impax Pharmaceuticals business to Impax Labs," Impax Pharmaceuticals president Michael Nestor said. "The Zomig product franchise fits well with the capabilities of our neurology-focused specialty sales force."

 


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PHARMACY

NACDS Foundation releases second wave of funding via Community PREP

BY Allison Cerra

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The charitable arm of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores once again has released funding that will support 15 new residencies for recent pharmacy graduates.

The NACDS Foundation said that the funding, made through the Community Pharmacy Residency Expansion Project, will award an additional $750,000 in grants to support the residencies. The $1.5 million Community PREP program, established in December 2010, helps expand educational opportunities for recent pharmacy school graduates by pairing them with faculty members and preceptors to oversee residents’ learning experiences in patient-centered pharmacy practice sites, NACDS Foundation said.

“Community PREP provides essential funding to expand hands-on clinical research and education opportunities for community pharmacy’s future leaders,” NACDS Foundation president Kathleen Jaeger said. “Under the expert guidance of pharmacy veterans, residents will hone their abilities to deliver patient-centered health services and contribute to the evidence-base for community pharmacy-based clinical practice. These educational partnerships between pharmacy schools and community pharmacy practice sites provide exceptional opportunities to advance research and pharmacy education, and ultimately improve patient healthcare outcomes.”

Click here for an application.


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Study: Link between diabetes drugs, pancreatic cancer risk unclear

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK — A new study published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology examined the possible link between pancreatic cancer and drugs designed to treat diabetes, and found the association to be unclear.

Researchers conducted a case-control study based on the British-based General Practice Research Database, which included drug prescriptions, diagnostics, hospitalizations and fatality information. The researchers also took into consideration such factors as body mass index, smoking, alcohol consumption and diabetes duration.

After examining 2,763 case patients that had a recorded diagnosis of pancreatic cancer, the researchers found that long-term use of metformin was associated with a decreased risk of pancreatic cancer only in women. Meanwhile, use of sulfonylureas and of insulin were associated with an increased risk of pancreatic cancer, they noted.

Click here for the full study.


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