Ambrilia shutters facility, sheds jobs; Upbeat cancer vax data buoys Generex shares;

> Shares of Generex shot up after the company reported positive mid-stage data for its cancer vaccine. Report

> Amylin reported that its experimental once-weekly form of Byetta proved superior to the twice-daily injectable version of the drug in a clinical trial. Story

> The CEO of Germany's MediGene says he would prefer to wait for more data on the prospective cancer blockbuster EndoTAG-1 before inking a partnership deal. Data from Phase II should be ready in the first half of 2010. Story

> ZymoGenetics says that its partner Bayer won't be applying for approval of its surgical bleeding control product Recothrom in Europe. The move came "in response to indications from the regulatory authorities that approval would not be forthcoming without additional clinical trial data." Story

> Shares of Chelsea Therapeutics were buoyed this morning by news that the FDA had signed off on plans to adjust the primary endpoint and enroll more patients for its Parkinson's disease treatment trial of Droxidopa. Story

> Alexza Pharmaceuticals has submitted its NDA for Staccato (AZ-004) to the FDA. AZ-004 is an inhalation product candidate being developed for the rapid treatment of agitation in patients with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. Alexza release

Pharma News

> As rumored last month, French executive Serge Weinberg is set to join the Sanofi-Aventis board as non-executive chairman, Paris newspapers are reporting. Story

> Eli Lilly won FDA approval for its long-lasting injectable version of Zyprexa, the blockbuster antipsychotic. Dubbed Zyprexa Relprevv, the injection sustains delivery for up to four weeks, the company said, basing its application for approval on a 2,054-patient study. Report

> Pfizer taketh away earlier this year, when it slashed its dividend in half to help pay for the Wyeth acquisition. Now, the company giveth back. It's boosted its quarterly payment to investors by 13 percent, to 18 cents. And it's pledging more increases "barring significant unforeseen events." According to the Wall Street Journal, this latest increase alone will cost the company nearly $650 million a year. Story

> More proof that China's where it's at for pharma reps. Japan's Takeda Pharmaceutical has brought Pfizer on board to help market its blockbuster diabetes drug Actos there, aiming for its fast-growing market for diabetes meds. Report

> GlaxoSmithKline is the latest drugmaker to open its doctor-payment files. GSK posted on its website a 121-page list of the more than 3,700 U.S. doctors paid during the second quarter for consulting and speaking on its behalf. The total: Some $14.6 million. The average: $3,909. Report

Biotech Research News

> The Washington Post weighs in today with a detailed look at the surge of new research work that is going into epigenetics, a field that has already spawned a string of new biotechs and promises to deliver many more. Report

> A research group at Karolinska Institutet, in collaboration with American and European scientists, has discovered that an inorganic polymer, polyphosphate, plays a key role in both inflammation and the formation of blood clots. Report

> The therapeutic promise of activating Sirt1 to spur weight loss and increase longevity has already generated significant R&D interest. Now researchers at Brown University, Rhode Island Hospital and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center say that Sirt1 in the brain has the potential to keep people thinner. And that discovery could point the way to new obesity drugs. Story

> A group of engineers are taking a leaf from the book of nature and using it to develop a new drug delivery technology, as well as new therapeutics. Report

> PFKFB3, a gene often studied by cancer researchers, has been linked to the metabolic inflammation that leads to diabetes. And understanding how it works means scientists could find ways to prevent or cure diabetes, according to a study by Texas AgriLife Research appearing in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. Story

> Australian physicians used a new stem cell therapy to essentially "reset" the immune system of a patient with multiple sclerosis, allowing him to walk again. Report

And Finally... Females can be too attractive to the opposite sex--too attractive for their own good--say biologists at UC Santa Barbara. They found that among fruit flies too much male attention directed toward attractive females leads to smaller families and, ultimately, to a reduced rate of population-wide adaptive evolution. Release