Five things for pharma marketers to know: Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Martin Shkreli, CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, told CBS News that he plans to cut the controversial price hike for toxoplasmosis treatment Daraprim but did not say by how much. Turing was the target of public outrage after his company acquired the drug and subsequently raised its price by 5,000%. The company's chief communications officer stepped down this week.

Amgen and Allergan reported positive Phase-III results for their biosimilar version of Genentech's cancer treatment Avastin, known as ABP 215. The two drugmakers found that the drug had a clinically equivalent efficacy and safety profile when treating patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer. Amgen and Allergan are collaborating on the development and commercialization of four oncology biosimilars.

An Australian study found that patients who receive text message reminders with personalized health information were more likely to adopt healthy habits, like eating right, smoking less and exercising more. Researchers sent messages on random weekdays at varying times, personalizing brief messages with patient names that contained advice on lifestyle changes, according to Reuters.

AstraZeneca released preclinical data for more than 50 of its medicines for a crowd-sourcing initiative, known as the Dream Challenge, aimed at identifying effective cancer therapy combinations. The released information also includes data of 10,000 tested combinations and how effective each one of those cocktails is in treating cancer.

The FDA approved Taiho Pharmaceutical's advanced colorectal cancer treatment, Lonsurf. Lonsurf reduced the risk of death by 32% compared to the placebo in clinical trials. The FDA recommended that blood counts be recorded at certain stages of treatment after some patients saw a significant decrease in their blood cell count while taking the drug.


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