Global Health Watch: Pharma Giants, Bird Flu Breakouts, IPO Surges

Recent health news includes scrutiny of WuXi AppTec for military links, a hold on Biomea's diabetes trials, and a successful IPO by Waystar. Bird flu continues to affect U.S. dairy herds, while Italy probes antitrust issues in the eye drug market. Additionally, Eli Lilly's Alzheimer's drug shows no major concerns.

Reuters | Updated: 07-06-2024 10:30 IST | Created: 07-06-2024 10:30 IST
Global Health Watch: Pharma Giants, Bird Flu Breakouts, IPO Surges
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Following is a summary of current health news briefs.

Staff at drugmaker under U.S. scrutiny worked with Chinese military scientists

Employees of drugmaker WuXi AppTec, under U.S. scrutiny for its links to the Chinese military, co-invented altitude sickness treatments with People's Liberation Army (PLA) scientists, according to public patent records and science papers reviewed by Reuters. The news agency identified 10 patent filings that list six of WuXi AppTec's staff as co-inventors of altitude sickness drugs with six scientists from the PLA General Hospital in Beijing - China's top military medical school and research centre. The filings, which Reuters is reporting for the first time, were made in the U.S., Europe and China between 2018 and 2023.

U.S. FDA places hold on Biomea's diabetes trials

Biomea Fusion said on Thursday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had placed a clinical hold on its ongoing mid stage studies of its experimental drug for type 1 and 2 diabetes, sending its shares down 55.7% in extended trade. (This story has been corrected to change 'trial' to 'trials' in the headline and 'study' to 'studies' in paragraph 1)

J&J-backed Rapport Therapeutics raises $154 million in US IPO

Rapport Therapeutics said on Thursday that it has raised $154 million in its initial public offering in the United States at a valuation of about $601.4 million. The company said it plans to sell 8 million shares at $17 each, priced at the midpoint of its indicated price range of $16-$18 apiece.

Bird flu outbreak reported in Minnesota dairy herd, the state's first

The ongoing U.S. outbreak of avian flu in dairy cattle reached Minnesota on Thursday as the state announced its first infected herd. More than 80 dairy herds have been infected with the virus across 11 states since late March, and three dairy workers have tested positive for the virus.

Novartis, Roche unit and others face Italy antitrust probe over eye drug

Italy's antitrust regulator said on Thursday it had launched an investigation into pharmaceutical companies including Novartis and Roche-controlled Genentech for having potentially restricted competition in the sale of an eye drug. Biopharma developer Samsung Bioepis, biotechs Biogen and Genentech, and Novartis, and some of their Italian, Dutch and UK units, allegedly coordinated their commercial strategies to delay the launch in Italy of Byooviz, a drug made with ranibizumab and developed and sold by Samsung Bioepis, the watchdog said in a statement.

US FDA staff raise no major concerns about Eli Lilly Alzheimer's drug

An FDA analysis of trial data for Eli Lilly's experimental Alzheimer's drug donanemab released on Thursday revealed no red flags, but raised questions about safety of the treatment for patients with early-stage disease. The drug is a potential rival to Eisai and Biogen's Leqembi, which won approval last July.

H7 bird flu hits another Australian poultry farm in quarantine zone

A fifth poultry farm near Melbourne has been infected with a highly pathogenic strain of avian influenza, the government of Australia's Victoria state said on Friday. The farm is close to three others where an H7N3 strain of the flu had already spread and authorities said the latest detection was not unexpected.

Healthcare software firm Waystar raises $968 million million in IPO

Waystar, a private equity-owned provider of software that helps hospitals and doctors' practices manage their finances, has raised $968 million in its initial public offering, the company said on Thursday. The IPO of 45 million shares was priced at $21.50 a share, Waystar said. The pricing, which was in the middle of its indicated range, gives Waystar a fully diluted valuation of $3.69 billion.

Novo Nordisk braces for generic challenge to Ozempic, Wegovy in China

Novo Nordisk is facing the prospect of intensifying competition in the promising Chinese market where drugmakers are developing at least 15 generic versions of its diabetes drug Ozempic and weight loss treatment Wegovy, clinical trial records showed. The Danish drugmaker has high hopes that demand for its blockbuster drugs will surge in China, which is estimated to have the world's highest number of people who are overweight or obese.

Exclusive-Cows infected with bird flu have died in five US states

Dairy cows infected with avian flu in five U.S. states have died or been slaughtered by farmers because they did not recover, state officials and academics told Reuters. Reports of the deaths suggest the bird flu outbreak in cows could take a greater economic toll in the farm belt than initially thought. Farmers have long culled poultry infected by the virus, but cows cost much more to raise than chickens or turkeys.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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