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Headlines > February 2004

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French workers protest at Merck HQ

27-Feb-2004 - Around 80 workers from Merck KGaA's French site at Lacassagne in Lyon have taken part in a protest at the company's headquarters in Darmstadt, Germany, against the planned closure of...

More consolidation on the cards for Yamanouchi?

27-Feb-2004 - The merger between Yamanouchi and Fujisawa is the first step towards creating a global mega-player, but additional tie-ups will be required if the new entity is to join the top...

Sigma-Aldrich expands in India

27-Feb-2004 - Chemicals company Sigma-Aldrich is to build an $8 million (€6.5m) laboratory-scale production facility for pharmaceuticals in Hyderabad, India, that will act as a feeder site for its plants elsewhere.

Technology 'holding back' drug discovery

27-Feb-2004 - The explosion of modern technologies such as high-throughput screening and combinatorial chemistry in the mid-1990s could be responsible for the current lack of new drugs in development, according to a...

New machines make short work of leak testing

27-Feb-2004 - Italy's Bonfiglioli Pharma Machinery has launched a new machine for testing that freeze-dried vials contain a vacuum that is much faster than current methods.

Pharmatron automates tablet-testing line

27-Feb-2004 - Switzerland's Dr Schleuniger Pharmatron has launched a new handling system for its 8M testing machine that reduces the amount of operator time to conduct quality control of the weight, thickness,...

Boehringer to make prostate cancer antibody

26-Feb-2004 - Boehringer Ingelheim has won a contract to develop a commercial-scale manufacturing process for a new prostate cancer drug in development at fellow German company Micromet.

Russia gets tough with drug counterfeiters

25-Feb-2004 - In Russia, the Health Ministry suspended the licences of 321 companies manufacturing or trading in counterfeit medicines last year, and a further 200 may also lose their licences following ongoing...

Yamanouchi and Fujisawa to merge

25-Feb-2004 - Predictions that 2004 could see another wave of consolidation in the pharmaceutical industry were lent further weight yesterday by the announcement that Japanese drug majors Yamanouchi and Fujisawa intend to...

Slowdown in R&D spending set to end?

25-Feb-2004 - A new study has provided a 'cautiously optimistic' estimate of spending on drug discovery and other areas of R&D over the next couple of years, which will be music to...

Vertex makes progress with novel anticancer class

25-Feb-2004 - One of the hallmarks of cancer is that errors occur when the chromosomes of cells divide and separate during cell division. Researchers have spent many years trying to identify the...

Software gives fast-track to improved enzymes

24-Feb-2004 - Scientists in the US have developed a new software package that can predict the activity of enzymes, potentially improving the design of new drugs and industrial reagents.

Bush names Medicare candidate

23-Feb-2004 - As reported last week, Mark McClellan looks set to leave his post as Commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to run the agency that oversees Medicare and...

Akzo cuts staff at Diosynth unit

23-Feb-2004 - Dutch chemical company Akzo Nobel followed through on its plans to cut costs at its pressured Diosynth subsidiary by slashing staff at the unit, which has been hit by a...

New contracts boost Lonza

23-Feb-2004 - Lonza has signed two new agreements for the supply of monoclonal antibody-based drugs that provide an early fillip for its contract manufacturing business, which was adversely affected by overcapacity in 2003.

RFID system for pharma use

23-Feb-2004 - MeadWestvaco Intelligent Systems has launched a radio frequency identification (RFID) inventory system that enables manufacturers to more accurately monitor drug delivery from production to pharmacy distribution.

FDA sees big role for RFID in drug counterfeiting war

19-Feb-2004 - The US Food and Drug Administration issued its final report on ways to combat pharmaceutical counterfeiting and identifies radiofrequency identification (RFID) as a primary means of tackling the problem.

Cardinal drops plans for Irish plant

19-Feb-2004 - Cardinal Health has said that it will not be proceeding with a $100 million (€78m) information technology and manufacturing facility in Longford, Ireland.

UK packaging firm Jaycare sold to VC group

19-Feb-2004 - UK pharmaceutical packaging firm Jaycare has been sold to venture capitalists for the second time in four years, in a deal worth more than £45 million (€67m).

Accenture to orchestrate RFID studies

19-Feb-2004 - Management consultancy firm Accenture has formed a group of industry leaders that will work together to evaluate the potential of new radio frequency identification (RFID) technology to improve pharmaceutical product...

Drug development model 'must be replaced'

19-Feb-2004 - The development of new drugs, rooted within the pharmaceutical industry, is inefficient and unsustainable and a new model is needed to reduce the cost of medicines and improve access to...

Acquisition creates new force in analytical optics

19-Feb-2004 - Germany's Heraeus Noblelight has acquired UK company Cathodeon in a move that allows it to broaden the range of optic lamps it supplies for analytical machines.

'Unnatural' natural products as a source of new drugs

19-Feb-2004 - Researchers in the US have developed a way of making synthetic polyketides - structures which form the backbone of a number of drugs for cancer and infectious diseases - that...

Record year once again at Teva

18-Feb-2004 - Israel's Teva Pharmaceutical Industries has reported strong increases in sales across its branded, generic and active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) operations in the fourth quarter of 2003, as net income rose...

Process automation - no longer for a select few

18-Feb-2004 - UK laboratory equipment specialist Lab-Plant says it can bring process automation within the reach of the majority of laboratories, pilot plants and mini-production facilities with the launch of its Lab...

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