Pfizer, Biocon end biosimilar insulin deal
NEW YORK — Pfizer and Indian drug maker Biocon have ended a partnership that the companies started in 2010 to develop biosimilar treatments for diabetes, the companies said.
The companies terminated the deal, which would have been worth up to $350 million, to develop biosimilar versions of insulin and insulin analog products, with Biocon manufacturing the products and Pfizer would market them. As of Monday, all rights that Biocon licensed to Pfizer, including to products distributed under the Univia and Glarvia brands, reverted back to Biocon, India’s largest biotechnology company.
"Biocon remains committed to delivering its biosimilar insulins portfolio to global markets in its endeavor to make a difference to diabetic patients across emerging and developed economies," Biocon chairman and managing director Kiran Mazumdar Shaw said. "Biocon will continue to work with its existing partners in several markets and will pursue a commercial strategy based on its own and through new alliances in other markets."
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At least one-third of rogue pharmacies under one domain name registrar, report finds
NEW YORK — One-third or more of rogue online pharmacy domains are under one Internet registrar, with two registrars accounting for more than half, according to a new report.
LegitScript, a Portland, Ore.-based company that verifies online pharmacies, went undercover posing as an online organized crime network called "Pay-Rx.biz" and approached Internet.bs, a registrar apparently based in Panama and registered in the Bahamas, saying it was interested in having Internet.bs host its illegal online pharmacies after the Food and Drug Administration, Interpol and other regulatory authorities had shut down its previous operation. LegitScript went to great lengths to show the illegality of Pay-Rx.biz’s business — including saying that it was selling such controlled medications as oxycodone without prescription, that it was selling counterfeit medicines — to the point that it "literally ran out" of ways to show how its business was illicit.
Nevertheless, LegitScript said, Internet.bs was "glad to help" and provided its president’s personal cell phone number, showing how Pay-Rx.biz could protect the more than 175 domains it registered — such as Oxycodonenoprescription.com and Noprescriptionrequired.biz — in addition to saying it would ignore notifications from regulators. It also said it would ignore alerts from LegitScript itself, which had tried to alert Internet.bs to its hosting of rogue pharmacies in 2010, but its notifications were ignored.
According to the report, Internet.bs, one of about 450 domain name registrars accredited by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, accounts for 0.2% of the total registered domains online, but between 32.9% and 44% of the rogue online pharmacy domains, not including the ones that LegitScript registered. Another registrar, ABSystems, has an additional 17.3% of rogue pharmacy domain names. Out of all the accredited registrars, 20 account for 81% of rogue online pharmacies, according to the report.
Following the release of the report, Internet.bs announced on its website that it had suspended 176 "illegal pharma domains explicitly setup by unscrupulous and pretend-to-be customers trying to fool regulators and circumvent applicable pharma regulations," listing the same domain names that LegitScript had registered. Still, Pharm4All.com, a separate rogue pharmacy that the LegitScript report named as using Internet.bs’ services and is also on the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy’s "Not Recommended Sites" list, remained active as of Monday evening.
Pharmacy is more than a business. If there are rogue pharmacies domains being hosted over internet freely, then it is the topic of worry. Strict action must be taken against offenders and those domain registrars. There are more than 10,000 drug prescriptions on internet and 97% out them do not follow the standard parameters of “United state pharmacy law and practice standard”. At present ICANN has launched .pharmacy domain to distinguish legal pharmacy products and services from rogue sellers. In addition to this, this domain helps to grow a brand and make its identification as an elite group.
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Internet.bs = a very appropriate name for the company!
Walgreens to deliver immunization data over Surescripts network
DEERFIELD, Ill. — Immunization records will be sent directly from Walgreens and Duane Reade stores to primary care providers over Surescripts’ electronic prescribing network, Walgreens said Monday.
Walgreens announced that beginning this month, the use of Surescripts’ Clinical Interoperability services to deliver immunization data from its 7,800 Walgreens and Duane Reade stores and 350 Take Care Clinics to patients’ primary care providers would improve coordination of care. The company plans to share immunization data with local and state public health agencies and Take Care Clinic patient summaries with primary care providers starting this later this year.
"Currently, Walgreens pharmacists and Take Care Health [System] providers can submit these patient records to physicians by fax or traditional mail," Walgreens SVP health and wellness services and solutions Jeffrey Kang said. "By using Surescripts’ network to provide this important information electronically, we can improve the care that patients receive by making it easier for providers to compile more complete medical histories for their patients. We know how difficult it is for patients to remember which immunizations they’ve had and when. This will help physicians have a more thorough healthcare conversation with their patients."
Walgreens said it had administered more than 5.5 million flu vaccines at stores and clinics in the 2011-2012 flu season. For those who opt-in to the new service, Surescripts will use a standard format to capture immunization details and send the record to primary care providers via fax, mail or electronically, and physicians using a Surescripts-certified electronic health record will have the option of receiving records via the Surescripts Clinical Interoperability Network.
"Pharmacies continue to lead by example in their efforts to connect care and enable healthcare providers to share and access clinical information when and where it is needed," Surescripts president and CEO Harry Totonis said. "Using their connection to the Surescripts network, Walgreens pharmacists, nurse practitioners and physician assistants will improve the coordination of care by sharing immunization records and patient summaries with patients’ primary care providers."
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