Celldex, Horizon and YM raising millions to fund drug programs; Novartis' tricky task of gaining FDA nod for vax against deadly brain infections;

@FierceBiotech: Heart muscle-cell gel can treat cardiac damage, maybe carry drugs as well--FierceBiotechResearch. Article | Follow @FierceBiotech

@JohnCFierce: Russia VC, now in Boston, will build clinical trial services infrastructure in Russia. They are throwing $$ around. Release | Follow @JohnCFierce

@RyanMFierce: Actelion and Auxilium have inked a deal for the development Xiaflex in Canada, Brazil, Australia and Mexico. More | Follow @RyanMFierce

@FierceMedDev: $WMGI saw Q4 net sales decline 8% vs. prior-year period ($126.9M vs $138.3M same period of 2010). Release | Follow @FierceMedDev

> The Infectious Disease Research Institute in Seattle has begun an early-stage clinical trial of a visceral leishmaniasis vaccine. Article

> Horizon Pharma ($HZNP) has struck of loan agreement to bring in $60 million to pay off $22.4 million in existing debt and fuel the commercialization of its arthritis drugs. Release

> Roche ($RHHBY) is expected to extend its offer to scoop up DNA sequencer maker Illumina ($ILMN) without boosting its initial $5.7 billion offer. Report

> Celldex Therapeutics ($CLDX), a developer of immunotherapies, has priced a public offering of its common stock from which it expects to net $37.7 million. Release

> An ex-Pfizer outsourcing specialist in the U.K. talked about his own CRO effort that he launched after the U.S. drug giant cut his job as part of a massive layoff. Q&A

> YM BioSciences ($YMI) has priced a $70 million offering of its common stock, saying it plans to use part of the proceeds to fund drug development. Release

Pharma News

@FiercePharma: Mead-Johnson and Danone team up to rival Nestle for Pfizer's nutrition unit, Reuters reports. News | Follow @FiercePharma

> Novartis meningitis vax faces tough fight. Item

> Field narrows in contest for Pfizer's nutrition unit. Article

> U.K. enjoys bargain-basement drug prices, report finds. Report

> GSK hits back at XenoPort in RLS drug dispute. More

> Bogus Avastin has cropped up repeatedly, WSJ finds. Story

And Finally… Forbes' Matthew Herper writes about Swiss drug giant Novartis' ($NVS) struggles to gain U.S. approval of a vaccine against deadly brain infections in infants. Item

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