Healthcare Business Recap: Pfizer Buys Nextwave, Orexigen Gets FDA Trial Approval

Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) exercises its option to purchase the privately held NextWave Pharmaceuticals, the developer of Quillivant XR, which is a treatment for attention deficit / hyperactivity disorder. The buyer will pay $255 million upfront and milestone amounts of as much as $425 million. Quillivant was okayed by the FDA in September and is expected become available in January.

It was announced that Eli Lilly and Company’s (NYSE:LLY) dulaglutide treatment for type 2 diabetes performs well in three Phase III studies, meeting the primary endpoints as measured by lower levels of hemoglobin A1c, which helps to indicate blood sugar control. Additional evaluations of dulaglutide are taking place, with two set to conclude in the next few months.

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The FDA gives its approval to exploring with Orexigen Therapeutics (NASDAQ:OREX) as to how the firm can accelerate its application for weight loss pill Contrave, which was turned down by the agency in January of 2011. The reason for rejection was the possibility of heart problems, and the firm was asked to conduct another study. Thus far 7,000 patients have been enrolled, with an additional 9,000 set be added by the end of 2012.

Medtronic’s (NYSE:MDT) CoreValve heart implant has increased the 1-year survival rates of patients in a study, along with improving their quality of life. Additionally, a trial of the firm’s Symplicity renal denervation treatment helped lower blood pressure in patients suffering from “treatment-resistant hypertension,” who indicate a high risk of “various cardiovascular events.”

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