Five things for pharma marketers to know: Wednesday, February 18

The Actavis brand will be used in specific regions after the Allergan acquistion
The Actavis brand will be used in specific regions after the Allergan acquistion

Pharma is failing to stick to its own marketing rules in the UK and Sweden. PMLive reports researchers at Sweden's University of Lund assessed marketing complaints and rulings between 2004 and 2012 and found companies ran afoul of industry-established marketing rules at least once a week in each country. Researchers said misleading promotions made up the majority of the violations. PMLive said the researchers also found repeat offenders, including Pfizer, Bayer, GSK and Novartis.

Actavis plans to fold itself under the Allergan brand name once the $66-billion acquisition process is finalized. “The Allergan name has represented innovation in branded pharmaceuticals, a commitment to bringing the best medicine to life and a strong partnership with physicians. Actavis CEO Brent Saunders said in a statement that new firm will still use the Actavis name in some regions “and for select product portfolios.”

Sanofi has teamed up with Dutch biotech Lead Pharma in an autoimmune disease collaboration. The duo will focus on nuclear hormone receptors called ROR gamma t. This focus will allow the two to explore treatments for conditions including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis and inflammatory bowel disease.

Gilead's HIV medication Truvada has the potential to blanket the infected and pre-infected market, but Gilead is not putting financial power behind its approved prophylactic use. Bloomberg reports that this is despite the drug's ability to protect against infection 92% of the time if taken as a daily preventative measure. Gilead explains that the preventive measure isn't a money maker, but Bloomberg notes that the drug company has focused its sales pitch on specialists as opposed to primary care physicians — a group that generally sees healthy people.

Scientists at Canada's Centre for Addiction and Mental Health may have identified a new way to attack multiple sclerosis. Lead researcher Fang Liu said in a statement that the research team has identified a new target that could stop nerve damage related to the brain transmitter glutamate. Liu's team developed a peptide that has been shown to improve motor function and reduce neuron death.


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