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Pfizer completes Icagen acquisition

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK — Icagen officially is a wholly owned subsidiary of Pfizer.

As part of the transaction, which first was announced in July, Icagen now will be part of Pfizer’s worldwide research and development organization and also will be integrated into Neusentis, Pfizer’s pain, sensory disorders and regenerative medicine research unit.

The aggregate transaction value, which includes the value of the shares that already were owned by Pfizer, was about $56 million.

“We’re excited that Icagen, a global leader in pain research, has now joined Pfizer,” said Ruth McKernan, Pfizer SVP and chief scientific officer of Neusentis. “We have worked closely with Icagen for several years and have the utmost respect for their expertise. Their understanding of ion channel mechanisms will enhance our ability to develop novel drugs for the treatment of pain and related disorders.”


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Prevent Blindness America debuts diabetic eye disease awareness campaign

BY Allison Cerra

CHICAGO — A volunteer eye health and safety organization has introduced a new program that seeks to educate the public on the potential effects diabetes may have on one’s vision.

Prevent Blindness America said its "Live Right, Save Sight!" campaign provides free information on diabetic eye disease — including such complications as diabetic retinopathy, an eye disease that weakens the small blood vessels in the retina — including risk factors, treatment options and Medicare benefits, as well as a dedicated Web page at PreventBlindness.org/diabetes. The organization also outlines recommendations to diabetics on ways to maintain their eye sight.

"The diabetes epidemic that we are facing is very serious and the resulting complications from this disease can be devastating to our health," Prevent Blindness America president and CEO Hugh Parry said. "The good news is that by making a committed effort to leading a healthy lifestyle today, we can help delay or even prevent developing diabetes and its effects in the future."


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Whole Foods supports Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign

BY DSN STAFF

AUSTIN — Whole Foods is promoting Share Our Strength’s hunger awareness campaign.

Whole Foods is supporting Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign with several promotions:

  • Whole Foods will match donations up to $25,000 of funds donated online, WholeFoodsMarket.com/holidays, to the cause;

  • When shoppers purchase gift cards from Nov. 16 through Dec. 31, Whole Foods will donate $1 for every card purchased to No Kid Hungry;

  • When shoppers purchase organic Fuji apples from Nov. 14 through Dec. 25, Whole Foods’ produce partners will donate up to $30,000 to the cause; and

  • When shoppers redeem Hain-Celestial coupons (which owns such brands as Arrowhead Mills, Terra Chips and Celestial Tea) — highlighted in Whole Foods Market’s Whole Deal sales flyer for the holidays — each coupon redeemed will garner a 40-cent donation to No Kid Hungry.

"The No Kid Hungry Campaign has an amazing mission that’s aligned with Whole Foods Market’s core values and we’re honored to team up with shoppers and vendors this holiday season to continue fighting childhood hunger," Whole Foods co-CEO Walter Robb said. "The approach to ending childhood hunger on the local, regional and national scale makes three meals a day a reality for thousands of children. As with our commitment to the Whole Kids Foundation, which aims to improve children’s nutrition, we believe that every child deserves to be nourished so they can reach their full potential."

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