Nail-biting at Genentech as layoffs start; Lacking votes, TorryPines delays dissolution;

> Pink slips have started flying at Genentech's South San Francisco headquarters. In the wake of its buyout by Roche, the company has been in the throes of restructuring, with a major management reshuffle and now job cuts. Genentech report

> TorreyPines Therapeutics says that 62 percent of its shareholders failed to vote on a proposal to approve the liquidation and dissolution, causing the company to delay its plans. Release

> Johnson & Johnson has officially completed the acquisition of drug developer Cougar Biotechnology. Report

> Abraxis BioScience announced the appointment of Rick Rodgers as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, succeeding David O'Toole. Release

> Addex Pharmaceuticals says the second preclinical milestone has been achieved in an exclusive collaboration and license agreement with Merck focused on developing an emerging type of drugs, called allosteric modulators, for treatment of Parkinson's disease and other undisclosed indications. Release

> Anti-TNF therapies for arthritis and other autoimmune diseases--including Amgen's Enbrel, Johnson & Johnson's Remicade, and Abbott Laboratories' Humira--appear to increase the risk of tuberculosis in certain patients, French researchers have found. Report

Pharma News

> Proving that Washington is a land of shifting sands, a backlash is growing against the government's cost-cutting deals with pharma and other healthcare groups. Report

> Seeking clarity about those much-watched animal health spinoffs? Have we got a story for you. A second round of bids for Merck and Schering-Plough's veterinary businesses are due next week, sources tell Reuters, with a final decision expected by month's end. Meanwhile, Pfizer and Wyeth are selling off some animal health assets, too. Report

> The U.S. government is gearing up for a big-time surge in swine flu this fall, with plans for a government-funded vaccination campaign as well as massive public-health mobilization. Report

> Are investors and analysts jumping to conclusions about the halted Niaspan/Zetia trial? As Merck's shares dropped on news that the study was stopped early, a Deutsche Bank analyst said that the negative reaction was "extremely premature and probably unwarranted." Report

And Finally... The U.S. House overwhelmingly approved a $373 million funding increase for FDA, the largest boost in the agency's history; the $2.99 billion budget awaits approval in the Senate. Report

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