Megadeals and iconic mergers in the pharmaceutical space took center stage at the 2019 Morgan Stanley Global Healthcare Conference, and three executives from top players in the industry took turns touting their massive acquisitions and the future of the combined companies.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.'s acquisition of Celgene Corp. has hit some bumps in the road since being announced in January, but CEO Giovanni Caforio said Celgene's pipeline is a strong indication that everything is on track.
"The pipeline has continued to progress and particularly on the Celgene side because of the large number of late-stage assets and expected launches," Caforio said.
Pfizer Inc. CFO Frank D'Amelio said after the company's Upjohn generics arm joins with Mylan NV, what remains of the New York pharmaceutical giant will be "a dramatically different company than what we've been in the past."
AbbVie Inc. CEO Richard Gonzalez said the June acquisition of Allergan PLC was a way to help offset any challenges AbbVie could face in 2023 when competition to Humira — the best-selling drug in the world in 2018 — enters the market.
"When you combine all of these assets together, you will end up with a strong, high-performing biopharmaceutical company that is underpinned by four or five different major growth franchises, all having the ability to be able to grow over the long term," Gonzalez said of the deal.
STORY: Megadeal Roundup: Bristol-Myers, Pfizer, AbbVie chiefs deliver merger updates
Chart of the week
STORY: Healthcare added 23,900 jobs in August; growth slows for 2nd straight month
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Sept. 11 that Aimmune Therapeutics Inc.'s peanut allergy drug has potential for children, but the agency questioned the drug's benefit for adults.
US FDA: Aimmune peanut allergy drug effective in children; adult benefit unclear
The U.S. drug regulator posed few questions to an advisory committee set to review Aimmune Therapeutics Inc.'s peanut allergy immunotherapy drug AR101. Analysts forecast a high chance of approval following the largely "positive" briefing documents.
Number of uninsured children in US increased by 425,000 in 2018
The number of uninsured children in the U.S. increased by 425,000 in 2018, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. The increase was driven by a drop in enrollment for public programs like Medicaid.
Pelosi's foreign drug pricing measure puts Trump, Republicans in a tight spot
By mirroring the Trump administration's foreign drug pricing index, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made a savvy move, which may give her the upper hand in getting legislation adopted or in putting her political rivals in a tight spot.
US health leaders head to Congo to reinforce commitment to end Ebola outbreak
Top U.S. health officials are headed to the Democratic Republic of Congo to get a ground view of the ongoing Ebola outbreak and reinforce the United States' commitment to ending the spread of the virus.
Federal health agency sets stricter penalties for Medicare, Medicaid fraud
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services set stricter penalties for providers that commit Medicare and Medicaid fraud in a Sept. 5 finalized rule. The agency also outlined a new "affiliations" authority in the finalized rule.
In other news
A supposed drug pricing plan from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., circulated around Washington, D.C., recently.
US House work ongoing on drug pricing legislation, Speaker Pelosi's office says
A document circulated in Washington on Sept. 9 by lobbyists claiming it was the drug pricing plan from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., quickly sparked interest but was just as swiftly debunked by her office.
AVEO shares surge after drug extends kidney cancer patients' lives in study
The Cambridge, Mass.-based company was evaluating the drug in a trial against Bayer AG's Nexavar in a phase 3 study named TIVO-3.
BeiGene shares rise after drugmaker disputes short seller's claims
BeiGene Ltd. CEO John Oyler disputed a short seller's claims that the Chinese drugmaker had misreported its sales, leading to a partial recovery in the stock following a two-day decline.
Clock is ticking on drug pricing bills, Trump's health plan, US FDA nominee
Congress is back and faces a jam-packed agenda, including finishing its work to lower drug prices; and President Donald Trump is expected to unveil his health plan this month and must soon name a nominee to head the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Amgen halts 2 early-stage multiple myeloma studies due to cardiac complications
Amgen Inc. has stopped enrollment in two early-stage clinical trials for two separate multiple myeloma drugs as possible heart damage was identified in patients during one of the studies.
Celgene drug improves survival for hard-to-treat blood cancer in phase 3 trial
Celgene's acute myeloid leukemia drug CC-486 helped improve the survival of patients with the difficult-to-treat cancer who had undergone a certain type of therapy during a phase 3 clinical trial.
Cannabis: Hashing Out a Budding Industry
Sept. 19, 2019 | 2 p.m.-3 p.m. ET
The cannabis industry is growing rapidly with no signs of a slowdown, with some estimates indicating that the global legal market size will reach $66.3 billion by the end of 2025. What does the future hold for this budding industry with increasing legal acceptance?
Join our upcoming complimentary webinar in which industry experts will provide an overview of growth in the space, recent trends in M&A activity, and the impact of U.S. regulations on the industry.
Essential Healthcare is a weekly collection of critical developments across the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, healthcare provider, healthcare technology and medical equipment industries that draws on exclusive analysis and value-added content from the Healthcare News team at S&P Global Market Intelligence. Subscribe now to get Essential Healthcare delivered to your inbox every week.