Five things for pharma marketers to know: Thursday, October 6, 2016

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1. Patients who take the blood-thinner Xarelto may be more likely to have serious bleeding episodes than patients taking Pradaxa, a rival medicine, according to a new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine. The analysis of 118,000 Medicare patients with atrial fibrillation found that the drug was associated with significant increases in intracranial hemorrhage and major extracranial bleeding when compared to those taking Pradaxa. (MedPage Today)

2. Medical device company ICU Medical agreed to acquire Pfizer's infusion drug business, which it acquired from Hospira in 2015 as part of a $15 billion deal. The ICU Medical deal is worth $1 billion. (Reuters)

3. Theranos is laying off 40% of its workforce, or 340 employees, closing its laboratory operations, and will no longer focus on blood testing. The FDA banned Theranos from operating medical laboratories for two years in July. (NYT)

4. Teva Pharmaceutical Industries agreed to partner with Celltrion Healthcare to commercialize two of Celltrion's biosimilar candidates in the U.S. The experimental drugs are biosimilar versions of Genentech's and Biogen's Rituxan and Roche's Herceptin.

5. A group of UnitedHealthcare customers are suing the insurer for allegedly setting up a system that overcharged them for prescription drugs. The lawsuit, that was filed in Minnesota, alleged customers were making co-payments that exceeded the cost of drugs to insurers. (Bloomberg)

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