Healthcare Roundup – States go after generic drugmakers for alleged price-fixing, Lilly’s COVID-19 treatment maybe available as soon as September

Published on: June 10, 2020
Author: Amy Liu

States go after generic drugmakers for alleged price-fixing

A coalition of 51 attorneys general in the U.S. has filed an antitrust complaint in federal court against 26 companies making generic dermatology drugs and 10 executives at these firms claiming wide-spread price-fixing, marketing allocating and bid-rigging related to over 80 different products.

Companies named in the complaint include Novartis (NVS -0.1%) unit Sandoz, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries (TEVA -3.8%), Pfizer’s (PFE -0.6%) Upjohn unit, Mylan (MYL -3.4%), Perrigo (PRGO -2.9%) and Taro Pharmaceutical Industries (TARO -1.7%).

Related tickers: Aclaris Therapeutics (ACRS -4.4%), Akorn (AKRX), Amphastar Pharmaceuticals (AMPH -2.2%), Amneal Pharmaceuticals (AMRX -8.0%), Bausch Health Companies (BHC -3.1%), Coherus Biosciences (CHRS -2.6%), Collegium Pharmaceutical (COLL -1.4%), Eagle Pharmaceuticals (EGRX -1.2%), Endo International (ENDP -5.1%), Lannett Company (LCI -4.4%), Mallinckrodt (MNK -5.0%), Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories (RDY -0.8%)

Lilly’s COVID-19 treatment maybe available as soon as September

Eli Lilly (NYSE:LLY) Chief Scientific Officer Daniel Skovronsky says the company has human trials underway with two antibody therapies. If things go well in August and September – with folks under treatment not having to move into hospitalization – it could lead to emergency use authorization, he says.

“September, October, November is not unreasonable.”

Lilly also has a third antibody treatment under study that could soon move to human trials.

Johnson & Johnson accelerates start of COVID-19 vaccine trial

Johnson & Johnson (JNJ +1.0%) unit Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies has moved the start of its Phase 1/2a clinical trial evaluating Ad26.COV2-S, its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidate, up to the second half of July from September.

The study will test the candidate’s safety and immunogenicity in 1,045 healthy adult volunteers in the U.S. and Belgium.

It is in talks with the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) to accelerate the start of a Phase 3 study pending the outcome of Phase 1s and regulatory sign-off.

FDA OKs emergency use of Illumina’s COVID-19 diagnostic test

The FDA has issued an Emergency Use Authorization for Illumina’s (NASDAQ:ILMN) COVIDSeq Test, a sequencing-based, in vitro diagnostic workflow enabling the detection of SARS-CoV-2.

The end-to-end workflow extends the options available for labs to scale diagnostic testing.

COVIDSeq uses upper respiratory specimens and delivers sample receipt to result in 24 hours using the NovaSeq 6000 Sequencing System.

The test currently has limited availability and is expected to be more broadly available this summer.

FDA OKs expanded emergency use of Quidel COVID-19 test

The FDA has amended its Emergency Use Authorization for Quidel’s (OTC:QDEL) rapid point-of-care Sofia SARS Antigen FIA test to allow it to be run on its automated Sofia Fluorescent Immunoassay Analyzer that can generate results in as little as 15 minutes.

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