Healthcare Roundup – Pfizer pledges $100M to fund for new antibiotics, Pressure builds on J&J to halt global talc sales

Published on: July 10, 2020
Author: Amy Liu

Pfizer pledges $100M to fund for new antibiotics

Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) announced that it pledged $100M to Antimicrobial Resistance Action Fund (AMR).

The fund will address global public health need for new antibiotics due to rise of antibiotic-resistant infections.

AMR is a collaboration among more than 20 biopharmaceutical companies that aims to bring 2-4 new antibiotics to patients by 2030.

“As the COVID-19 pandemic has shown, we must invest in the development of medicines now so that we are prepared to help prevent the next public health crisis.” said Chairman and CEO Albert Bourla.

Pressure builds on J&J to halt global talc sales

More than 170 nonprofit groups are calling on Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) to stop selling its talc-based baby powder worldwide after the company said in May that it would discontinue the product in the U.S. and Canada.

J&J’s choice to continue marketing baby powder in international markets, often to Black and Brown consumers, contradicts a commitment to fighting racial inequality, declared Janette Robinson Flint, the executive director of Black Women for Wellness.

“Decades of independent scientific studies by medical experts around the world support the safety of Johnson’s Baby Powder,” according to the company. “We continue to offer this product in many other regions around the world where there is higher consumer demand.”

Johnson & Johnson still faces thousands of lawsuits from consumers and their survivors claiming its talc products were contaminated with asbestos and caused cancer.

FDA OKs Mylan Humira biosimilar

Mylan N.V. (NASDAQ:MYL) and collaboration partner Fujifilm Kyowa Kirin Biologics Co., Ltd. (OTCPK:FUJIF) announce the FDA nod for Hulio (adalimumab-fkjp), a biosimilar to AbbVie’s (NYSE:ABBV) top seller Humira.

Per Mylan’s July 2018 license agreement with AbbVie, it will be able to launch Hulio in the U.S. in July 2023.

Humira generated $14.9B in sales for AbbVie in 2019.

MYL up 3% premarket on light volume.

Wall Street analysts currently lean bullish on the stock.

AIM ImmunoTech teams up with Roswell Park for combo trial in COVID-19 patients with cancer

AIM ImmunoTech (NYSEMKT:AIM) is up 8% premarket after entering into a clinical trial agreement (CTA) with Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center to support the latter’s Phase 1/2a trial of Ampligen (rintatolimod) in combination with interferon alfa-2b, in cancer patients with COVID-19. Roswell Park is the sponsor of the new clinical trial.

The initial Phase 1 portion of the study is planned to evaluate 12-24 patients receiving both Ampligen and interferon alfa-2b at escalating doses.

Once the Phase I portion is complete, the Phase 2a portion of this study will be initiated, with patients randomized into two arms: one receiving the two-drug combination and a control group who will not receive Ampligen or interferon alfa-2b but will receive best available care.

AIM ImmunoTech is helping to fund the study and will provide Ampligen (rintatolimod) at no charge.

AstraZeneca nabs accelerated review in U.S. for new use of Brilinta

Under Priority Review status, the FDA has accepted for review AstraZeneca’s (NYSE:AZN) supplemental marketing application seeking approval of Brilinta (ticagrelor) for the reduction of subsequent stroke in patients who experienced an acute ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack.

The agency’s action date is in Q4.

The blood thinner was first approved in the U.S. in July 2011 for acute coronary syndromes.

Shares up a fraction premarket.

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