ALSO NOTED: Takeda, Abbott split TAP; Alseres raises funds; investigators close in on another case of drug counterfeiting;and m

> As expected, Takeda is paying Abbott $1.5 billion to disband a joint venture launched 30 years ago. In the deal to break up TAP, Abbott will keep the cancer drug Lupron and 300 sales people. Takeda will keep Prevacid and two experimental therapies along with 5,000 staffers. Release

> Alseres Pharmaceuticals has raised $5 million. Release

> Nereus Pharmaceuticals says that enrollment has begun in a Phase Ib study evaluating the vascular disrupting agent NPI-2358 in combination with standard chemotherapy in patients with non-small cell lung cancer. Release

> A Vietnamese company is beginning a human trial of a new bird flu vaccine. Report

> Hong Kong officials were quick to make sure that the recent deaths of several children in an influenza epidemic had no link to bird flu. And the city has moved aggressively to stop the spread of the flu as well as the fear it has inspired. Report

> A professor at the University of Toronto is warning that researchers may find it increasingly difficult to enlist volunteers for new trials exploring the safety and efficacy of experimental AIDS vaccines. Volunteers opted out of Merck's international STEP program because they feared that they would test positive for HIV because of the antibodies produced by the vaccine. Report

And Finally...The fevered search to find the cause to the fatal reactions to heparin is closing in fast around another case of drug counterfeiting in China. Article