HEALTH

Ostrov named B&L chairman, CEO

BY Michael Johnsen

ROCHESTER, N.Y. Bausch & Lomb on Wednesday named Gerald Ostrov its new chairman and chief executive officer, effective immediately. Ostrov succeeds Ronald Zarrella in those two posts. Zarrella retires in March and will continue with B&L as chairman emeritus.

“Jerry has extensive experience in ophthalmic businesses and consumer marketing, and is the ideal leader to take Bausch & Lomb into a new era of growth,” stated Zarrella in announcing the appointment.

Ostrov comes to B&L from Johnson & Johnson, where he was company group chairman, Worldwide Vision Care.

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Congressmen request BTC information from GAO

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman John Dingell, D-Mich., and Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Bart Stupak, D-Mich., have requested an update of the General Accounting Office’s 1995 evaluation on the potential benefits and pitfalls associated with a third-class of drugs in a letter to GAO Comptroller General David Walker, FDANews reported Tuesday.

The FDA held a meeting in October to help identify the issues and hurdles that would need to be addressed if a behind-the-counter class of drugs were to be considered. The FDA has established no timetable for a next step, such as a call for public comments and/or an advisory committee hearing, following that meeting.

The 1995 GAO report on BTC drugs concluded there were no major benefits associated with a third class.

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Virulite seeks suitor, FDA approval for new cold sore remedy

BY Michael Johnsen

COSTA MESA, Calif. Virulite, a medical device manufacturer developing a new treatment for cold sores, is looking for a U.S. suitor, having retained Compass Point Capital and Murphy Business and Financial Corporation as its mergers and acquisitions advisors, the U.K. company announced Friday.

Virulite is presently in the process of obtaining Food and Drug Administration clearance for a portable, hand held device that uses an invisible, non-thermal band of near-infrared light that, according to the company, reduces the healing time of cold cores by up to one half.

The company completed a U.S. market test of the product through Walgreens’ online distribution channel, where Virulite outsold all competing cold sore remedies, including the current market leader, the topical cream Abreva by GlaxoSmithKline, Virulite reported.

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