ALSO NOTED: Pharma growth sinking to historic low; Neurocrine gains Japanese partner; OccuLogix suspends development program;an

> Here's statistical confirmation of the gloom-and-doom facing Big Pharma. Worldwide sales growth will slow next year to around 5 percent from 6 to 7 percent this year, according to a new report from IMS Health. Report

> Japan's Dainippon Sumitomo Pharma will pay Neurocrine Biosciences $20 million up front plus an additional milestone payment of $10 million for the Japanese licensing rights to the insomnia drug indiplon, which has been filed for approval by the FDA. The PDUFA action date on indiplon is December 12. Release

> OccuLogix has already put itself up on the sales block as it signals its willingness to do a deal of some sort. Now the company says it is suspending development of its RHEO System for dry, age-related macular degeneration. In early October the company announced that it would consider every option in maximizing shareholder value, including a sale, but couldn't confirm whether or not it could complete a deal. Release

> ZymoGenetics is boosting spending in preparation for launching rThrombin, designed to control bleeding during surgery, causing its losses for the third quarter to go up. Report

> It's a one-two punch for AstraZeneca today. A Canadian drug maker is challenging AZ's patent on the cholesterol drug Crestor, one of its top sellers at $2 billion--and a linchpin of its profits over the next few years. Meanwhile, the company reported a 15 percent drop in profits. Report

> Score one for GlaxoSmithKline. The company won an injunction against the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, successfully blocking implementation of new rules governing patent continuances, at least temporarily. Report

> What's your pick for the most memorable drug ad of the 2006-2007 season? If you picked that Lunasta moth, you win. Report

And Finally... Nematode worms treated with lithium show a 46 percent increase in lifespan, raising the tantalizing question of whether humans taking the mood affecting drug are also taking an anti-aging medication. Release

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