Merck CEO focuses on acquisitions; Alkermes lays plans for ALKS8700 NDA for MS;

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> Merck ($MRK) CEO Ken Frazier is sounding distinctly more bullish about new biotech acquisitions in the wake of the market correction for the sector. "We have seen values go down over these last few weeks and we're going to continue to look for those opportunities," Frazier told analysts. Story

> Alkermes ($ALKS) says it's on track to file its MS drug ALKS8700 in 2018. "With these positive pharmacokinetic bridging results and agreement with the FDA on our regulatory strategy in hand, our path to approval for ALKS 8700 has been clarified. A key component of the program is the comparison of GI tolerability, as we see this as an opportunity to potentially provide new benefits to MS patients," said Elliot Ehrich, the CMO at Alkermes. "We remain on track to advance ALKS 8700 twice-daily into Phase 3 development with the initiation of the two-year safety study later this year, and we plan to file the NDA in 2018." Release

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