Merck once again reached for the ax this week, outlining plans to lay off 8,500 staff in a bid to save $2.5 billion a year. The reorganized company will focus R&D dollars on four areas, one of which is the vaccines business.
Top 10 pharma companies by employees
Being the largest company by any number of measures--revenues, earnings, those kinds of yardsticks--is a good thing. Being the largest by number of employees is trickier, unless yours is also the largest by those other measures. As we have seen time and again in recent years in the pharma industry, having lots of employees and falling revenues is a formula that leads to layoffs. As a whole, the top 10 companies had fewer employees at the end of 2012 than at the end of 2011. Read the full report >>
With the books closed on 2012, we can confirm--as expected--that a majority of the major FDA vaccine approvals went to trivalent influenza vaccines. (The FDA is continuing this trend with the first vaccine approval of 2013 going to Flublok.) Manufacturers, after all, need to reformulate them each season. But two new quadrivalent flu vaccines from GlaxoSmithKline and AstraZeneca also joined the ranks, scheduled to hit the market later this year. Read more >>
POPULAR COMMENT THREADS
Congress' failure to find a budget compromise and subsequent government shutdown has left CDC without the staff to carry out many of its functions, including the seasonal influenza program.
Over their 50-year history, the National Institutes of Health's (NIH) Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Units (VTEUs) have shaped immunization policy by stepping up when industry can't--or won't--run trials. This week, NIH reiterated its belief in the model by expanding its network.
While the government shutdown has cast doubt on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) ability to manage the upcoming flu season, officials can take some solace from last year's efforts. Flu vaccine uptake levels in adults, kids and health workers all trended upward last year.
As the succession of late-phase cancer vaccine flops shows, critical gaps in knowledge of the disease remain. Failure to tackle these gaps in breast cancer could see the loss of around 185,000 lives in the United Kingdom by 2030.
The interest in vaccine deals stems from a belief that tweaking the immune system can have a major impact on cancer care.
The vaccine sector appears to be in good health. After coming through a period in which low profit margins and liability concerns deterred investment, EvaluatePharma now tips the sector to grow from $25 billion to $39 billion between 2012 and 2018. Yet, in some areas, old complaints can still be heard.
From Our Sister Sites
California's Boreal Genomics pulled in an $18 million Series C financing to back further commercial growth of its genomic research tools and diagnostic test business. The company sells research tools and develops diagnostic tests focused on noninvasive tumor profiling and cancer monitoring.
California's Boreal Genomics pulled in an $18 million Series C financing to back further commercial growth of its genomic research tools and diagnostic test business.