Merck chief executive signals interest in medical devices

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Merck chief executive Richard Clark told analysts Friday he might consider expanding into medical devices and diagnostics as a way to revive the company's fortunes.
Clark mapped out the options for the company in a private meeting with analysts on Friday, Reuters said. The newly-appointed Merck chief told analysts that change has to come but change "is not synonymous with cutting costs."
A Merck spokeswoman confirmed to Reuters the meeting took place, adding that the drug maker is "examining options" but that no decisions have been made.
Meanwhile, closing arguments are scheduled for today in Merck's second Vioxx trial being held in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Lawyers for Merck and Frederick "Mike" Humeston, a postal worker suing the company over Vioxx, met privately with the judge in the case on Friday to negotiate the wording of instructions given to jurors before they star deliberating.
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