Novavax buoyed by new vax trial; FDA approves kidney cancer drug;

> Shares of Novavax were buoyed this morning by the news that it had begun a clinical trial of its H1N1 vaccine in collaboration with GE Healthcare and Avimex Labs. GE is using its single-use bioprocessing technologies to make the vaccine. Report

> The FDA has approved GlaxoSmithKline's Votrient (pazopanib) to treat kidney cancer. The oral tablet targets a protein needed to fuel tumor growth and fits into a category of drugs that include Sutent and Nexavar. GSK release

>  Hydra Biosciences is pocketing a $5 million upfront payment from Cubist Pharmaceuticals after inking a pact that "focuses on Hydra's research and development program for ion channel compounds that target the TRPA1 receptor, which is believed to have an important role in pain management." Release

> Waltham, MA-based Synageva BioPharma has added $12 million to its latest venture round. The final closing brings total funding in the round to $45 million. Synageva release

> Pacira Pharmaceuticals announced that its Phase III study of its new analgesic Exparel (DepoBupivacaine) in patients undergoing a bunionectomy procedure met its primary endpoint. Pacira release

>  Shares of Morphosys were buoyed by the news that the developer had inked a collaboration deal with Japan's Daiichi Sankyo to advance new antibodies for hospital-acquired infections. Release

>  An independent panel is recommending that BioSante Pharmaceuticals continue a late-stage study on its lead drug for sexual dysfunction in menopausal women. Story

>  AEterna Zentaris is raising $5.5 million from the sale of shares. Release

Pharma News

> Big Pharma's march toward doc-disclosure proceeds apace. Merck posted its first list of speaking fees paid to doctors and other health professionals, detailing some $3.7 million in payments for the third quarter. Report

> The good news: Pfizer delivered a big increase in third-quarter profits; 26 percent, to be exact. The bad: revenues slipped 3 percent, highlighting the fact that cost-cutting boosted earnings, not product performance. (Nonetheless, sales did beat analyst estimates.) Report

> ED drugs have won over the American College of Physicians. Report

Research News

> An enzyme known as activated protein C, or APC, was able to significantly prolong the lives of mice involved in a study of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease. Study

> A team of researchers used a newly identified human cardiac master stem cell to create a strip of heart muscle in the lab that essentially works "like slapping a Band-Aid on the heart." Report

> San Diego-based startup Fate Therapeutics has scored a stem cell tech coup, gaining breakthrough new technology that makes it easier and far less expensive to scale up the production of induced pluripotent stem cells--adult stem cells reengineered to have the same tissue-generating characteristics as embryonic stem cells. Report

And Finally... Scientists are investigating the venom of the African green mamba as a potential therapy for heart failure. Article

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