Company news: Roche, Wolters Kluwer, Janssen, WorldOne

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Health and legal reform in China is prompting publisher Wolters Kluwer to expand its China workforce, reported Bloomberg. The news source said plans include increasing headcount by 17% over the next six months, or a total of 50 people. Bloomberg said this would bring the total to 300 employees.

Pascal Soriot's seat at Roche will not be cool for long. The company announced Wednesday that the COO of Roche Diagnostics, Daniel O'Day, will assume the COO duties of Roche Pharma as of September 1. Soriot starts his new job as AstraZeneca's chief executive October 1.

The FDA has given Janssen prostate cancer drug Zytiga priority review for patients who have not undergone chemotherapy. The application is for use among patients with metastic castration-resistant prostate cancer who are asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic and have not benefited from androgen-deprivation therapy.

Healthcare marketing research firm WorldOne expanded its board of directors with the addition of Kerry Hicks, the founder and former CEO of HealthGrades. A destination for consumers seeking information on doctors and hospitals launched in 1998, HealthGrades grew to nearly one million daily visitors across its online properties. Hicks led the publicly traded firm for 11 years, before facilitating a sale to Vestar Capital Partners for $295 million in 2010, and remains chairman of the HealthGrades board. WorldOne beefed up its online network when it bought Sermo this year. “Kerry's appointment to our Board adds a seasoned industry veteran and visionary at a critical time,” said WorldOne CEO Peter Kirk in a statement. MM&M's profile of Kirk will be available online this Friday, Aug. 31.

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