Five things for pharma marketers to know: Tuesday, May 10, 2016

BIO launched a campaign called "Time is Precious"

1. A number of major U.S. investors met with lobbying group Biotechnology Innovation Organization, to implore them to better defend the industry against drug pricing criticism. Representatives from Fidelity Investments, T. Rowe Price Group, and Wellington Management were present at the meeting, according to unnamed sources. (Bloomberg)

2. An experimental pancreatic vaccine,algenpantucel-L, manufactured by NewLink Genetics, failed to extend survival of patients in a Phase-III trial. The vaccine was created to harness the patient's immune system to kill cancer cells. (The Street)

3. The South African government is negotiating with Roche to cut the price of its breast cancer drug Herceptin. The drug costs $32,745 to treat one person and is unaffordable for most women, the country's health minister said. (Reuters)

4. Epirus BioPharmaceuticals is cutting 40% of its workforce and suspending its lead drug development program. The company stopped its Phase-III trial of a biosimilar version of Johnson & Johnson's Remicade. (Boston Business Journal)

5. ICYMI: FDA commissioner Robert Califf told attendees at an industry conference that Congress must “carefully craft” the 21st Century Cures legislation. Califf warned that the FDA could face significant risks if drugs are approved too quickly and noted that the FDA requires a “stable source of funding.” (Bloomberg)