Lexicon slashes staff; Alkermes raises $250M in cash; Hoppenot to helm Incyte;

@FierceBiotech: Merck's fast and furious MK-3475 #immunotherapy team guns for a quick approval. Story | Follow @FierceBiotech

@JohnCFierce: Interesting to see Sanofi and Roche going deeper into RNAi as Merck bails out, takes a big writeoff for Sirna. Makes sense, though. In or out. | Follow @JohnCFierce

@DamianFierce: With $125M Alexion deal, Moderna has pulled in more than $500M over the past year and change. More | Follow @DamianFierce

@EmilyMFierce: European industry-academic partnership seeks miRNA therapies for neurodegenerative diseases. Article | Follow @EmilyMFierce

> Alkermes ($ALKS) will start 2014 flush with cash. Invesco is delivering $250 million through the purchase of shares. The Dublin-based biotech says it plans to use the money for general purposes, but the amount raises the distinct possibility that Alkermes has a deal or two in mind. Release

> Texas-based Lexicon Pharmaceuticals is axing 115 staffers, 45% of the total, in a restructuring. The CEO, Arthur T. Sands, says he's also on the way out once a successor can be found. Release

> Incyte ($INCY) has named Herve Hoppenot, the former president at Novartis Oncology, as the company's new CEO. Release

> Pieris AG reports that it has achieved its third milestone with Daiichi Sankyo on its lead program for Anticalin. Release

Medical Device News

@FierceMedDev: Appeals court reaffirms injunction on Boston Scientific's Guidezilla catheter. More | Follow @FierceMedDev

@MarkHFierce: Detailed medical imaging of the skin is drawing investor interest in the U.K. Release | Follow @MarkHFierce

@MichaelGFierce: ICYMI: Global nanomed market, driven by brain delivery, is expected to reach $177B by 2019. Item from FierceDrugDelivery | Follow @MichaelGFierce

@EmilyWFierce: O.C. medical device firm sees great potential in Indian market, expands sales. More | Follow @EmilyWFierce

> St. Jude points to solid Q4 growth in an early earnings release. Story

> Ivantis' $46.5M Series B will propel multiple trials for a tiny eye stent. Article

> Cancer Dx startup Microlin Bio envisions $25M IPO. Item

Pharma News

@FiercePharma: AC Immune begins first trial of a tau-targeting Alzheimer's vaccine. Story from FierceVaccines | Follow @FiercePharma

@TracyStaton: And still FiercePharma's best-read special report: Top 10 Drug Patent Losses of 2014. Report | Follow @TracyStaton

@EricPFierce: There are 3,000 compounding pharmacies making sterile drugs. Just 11 have volunteered for FDA oversight. Story from FiercePharmaManufacturing | Follow @EricPFierce

@CarlyHFierce: Adcock Ingram forges ahead with its African expansion while CFR deal stalls. Friday's story | Follow @CarlyHFierce

> FDA's latest action further imperils Ranbaxy's U.S. sales. Story

> Look for an M&A scramble in 2014, with pharma chasing deals at ever-higher prices. Report

> Chinese corruption probe expands as officials detain former Sinopharm exec. More

CRO News

> Quintiles partners up to boost its commercialization business. More

> Theorem aligns with BioTelemetry to dial up its cardiac market share. Report

> CROS NT buys into biometrics with its latest acquisition. News

> Pfizer taps risk-sharing researcher Avillion for cancer PhIII. Story

> JSS eyes Canadian dominance with buyout of rival CRO. Article

> GoBalto goes global with expansion into U.K. and Singapore. Item

Biotech IT News

> New York Genome Center taps U. of Buffalo for computing horsepower. Report

> Pfizer trialing video game designed to diagnose Alzheimer's. Item

> Merge wipes $15M from backlog after discovering ex-employee faked contracts. News

> Merck invests in an FDA-cleared mobile diabetes management business. Article

> Analyst: CROs like Covance and Icon will take the lead on IT and genomics. Story

> Early Google investor picks Maverix from the genome data analysis crowd. More

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