After Strong Quarter, Biogen To Focus On Drugs In Pipeline

After Strong Quarter, Biogen To Focus On Drugs In PipelineAfter Strong Quarter, Biogen To Focus On Drugs In Pipeline

In other news, Novartis blamed its weaker-than-expected sales on the pace at which the U.S. government approves new drugs and insurers choose to cover them. Meanwhile, a major Johnson & Johnson shareholder is pushing the management to separate into three divisions.

Reuters: Biogen Focuses On Drugs In Pipeline After Strong Quarter Biogen Inc eased investor nerves on Wednesday and its shares surged more than 9 percent after the company reported better-than-expected sales of its most important multiple sclerosis drug, Tecfidera, and issued a 2016 outlook in line with Wall Street estimates. Biogen’s quarterly results should help put a difficult 2015 in the rear view mirror and allow for a renewed focus on potentially important drugs the U.S. biotech company is developing. (Berkrot and Grover, 1/27)

Reuters: U.S. Insurers Dragging Feet On Covering New Drugs, Novartis Says Getting U.S. government and commercial insurers to cover new medicines can now take longer than in Europe, Swiss drugmaker Novartis said on Wednesday, blaming U.S. delays for weaker than expected sales of a key heart failure treatment. Last year, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved 45 novel drugs, the most since the all-time record of 53 in 1996. (Miller and Hirschler, 1/27)

Reuters: Investor Pressures J&J To Consider Split Up: Sources Artisan Partners, a major shareholder in Johnson & Johnson, has urged several activists to pressure the consumer products giant to consider major changes that include a potential split, according to sources and documents. Artisan has asked Johnson & Johnson’s management to consider separating its three divisions – consumer products, pharmaceuticals and medical devices – into standalone companies in hopes of unlocking up to $90 billion in enterprise value, said sources familiar with the matter. (O’Donnell, 1/27)

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

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