Sandoz sues Novo Nordisk over diabetes drug
NEW YORK — Generic drug maker Sandoz is suing Danish drug maker Novo Nordisk over a generic version of a drug used to treat diabetes, according to published reports.
Bloomberg reported that Sandoz, the generics arm of Swiss drug maker Novartis, was suing Novo Nordisk in a Detroit federal court, hoping the court would find that the Sandoz generic version of Novo Nordisk’s Prandin (repaglinide) did not infringe on the latter company’s patent covering the drug.
Sandoz is hoping to bring the drug to market before the drug loses patent protection, according to Bloomberg. The patent is scheduled to expire in June 2018, according to Food and Drug Administration records.
Breast cancer drug may cause heart health problems among those with history of heart disease, diabetes
NEW YORK — A new study published in the Annals of Oncology found that a certain breast cancer drug may pose an increased risk of heart problems in elderly patients with a history of heart disease and/or diabetes.
After examining the records of 45 women between the ages of 70 and 92 years that have been treated with trastuzumab since 2005, 12 of the patients (26.7%) developed heart problems. Additionally, 33% of the women with a history of heart disease developed either asymptomatic and symptomatic heart problems as a result of taking trastuzumab, compared with only 9.1% of women without such a history, and 33.3% of women with diabetes developed problems, compared with only 6.1% without the condition. When trastuzumab treatment was stopped, all but one of the women fully recovered, while five of them were able to restart the treatment.
Study author César Serrano, who conducted the research while working as a clinical fellow at the Department of Medical Oncology Breast Cancer Centre at the Vall d’Hebron University Hospital in Barcelona, said that "this is the first study specifically to assess trastuzumab-related cardiac toxicity and the cardiovascular factors that are associated with an increased risk in a selected population of elderly breast cancer patients."
Serrano, who now is a postdoctoral research fellow at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, said that based on the results, "[we] think that it is reasonable to refer elderly breast cancer patients to a cardiologist if one or more cardiovascular risk factors are present before or during treatment with trastuzumab. Moreover, a closer surveillance of early symptoms and cardiac function is highly recommended."
Loblaw to extend Get Checked Now program
BRAMPTON, Ontario — Canada-based drug store chain Loblaw has extended its Get Checked Now diabetes program, the company announced Thursday.
The program, which is offered at participating in-store Loblaw pharmacy and DRUGstore pharmacy locations, offers personalized computerized diabetes risk assessments, as well as a customized printout for patients. This year, however, Loblaw said the Get Checked Now program will offer two types of education sessions led by a Canadian Diabetes Association community presenter, as well as diabetes-friendly cooking classes and dietitian-led store tours, which will show patients how to read food labels and make healthy food choices.
"Working with the Canadian Diabetes Association is another example of Loblaw’s commitment to help Canadians live healthier lives," Loblaw SVP pharmacy Bobbi Reinholdt said. "Our pharmacists can provide personalized diabetes risk assessments at any time as well as education on managing diabetes, including diabetes medication reviews. Loblaw and its pharmacies aim to support Canadians’ healthier lifestyle goals in a one-stop shop experience."