WellPoint/Amerigroup Merger Okayed, New Acura Product News: Healthcare Business Recap

The Justice Department is no longer concerned over the possible creation of a Medicaid managed care monopoly in most of Northern Virginia and has cleared the way for the health insurer WellPoint (NYSE:WLP) to purchase Amerigroup Corporation (NYSE:AGP). The change in the DOJ’s attitude came with Amerigroup agreeing to divest its Virginia business, Amerigroup Virginia Inc., to the Inova Health System Foundation which is contingent upon the above $4.46 billion merger to occur.

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Acura Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ACUR) has developed a next-generation pseudoephedrine formulation which will impede the extraction of pseudoephedrine from the tablets to form methamphetamine. Nexafed unites nasal-congestion relief with unique IMPEDE tech which disrupts the conversion of pseudoephedrine into methamphetamine. According to topline results from a phase 1 pharmacokinetic study in 30 healthy adult subjects, Nexafed is bioequivalent to the leading national brand product and the medication should be launched before the year’s end. In response, shares of Acura had gained more that 35 percent in late afternoon trading.

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