Oxford BioMedica strikes pact with Novartis; Novo Nordisk profits surge;

@FierceBiotech: ICYMI, check out newest Industry Voices: Time to Take Fecal Transplantation Seriously. Feature | Follow @FierceBiotech

@JohnCFierce: Seems likely to me that Merck is going to cut open R&D and do some major surgery. Perlmutter is two weeks on the job. | Follow @JohnCFierce

@RyanMFierce: Just talked to Semantelli about IMS Health deal: IMS Health acquires social media analytics startup Semantelli. Report | Follow @RyanMFierce

> Oxford BioMedica struck a deal with Novartis ($NVS) to manufacture clinical grade material with its LentiVector gene delivery technology. Release

> Novo Nordisk ($NVO) today handed investors a 28% bump in first-quarter profits as it rode better-than-expected sales of both its insulin products and its diabetes treatment Victoza. Its net income was 5.98 billion kroner ($1.1 billion), Bloomberg reported. Yet in mid-morning trading in the U.S., shares were off 1.25%.  Report

Pharma News

@FiercePharma: Scary-odd news from Bloomberg: Amgen blood drugs may help victims survive nuclear attack. Story | Follow @FiercePharma

@EricPFierce: FDA tests the waters on Plan B, approves it for girls 15 and older, off the shelf but requires proof of age. Report | Follow @EricPFierce

> Novo's exceptional first quarter still disappoints. Report

> Amgen blood drugs may help humans survive nuclear attack, FDA says. Article

> Lagging Januvia weighs on Merck's none-too-pretty first quarter. More

Medical Device News

@FierceMedDev: Natera hauls in $54.6M for prenatal Dx. News | Follow @FierceMedDev

@MarkHFierce: An MRI scan to measure rain atrophy could predict MS, a new University at Buffalo study has determined. More | Follow @MarkHFierce

 @DamianFierce: Join us for a trip through why a repeal of the medical device tax is unlikely to happen any time soon. Editor's corner | Follow @DamianFierce

> Hospira pulling the plug on troubled devices. Report

> Fresenius Medical watches profits slip amid U.S. struggles. Article

> Cardiovascular Systems addresses U.S. govt. info request in insider trader investigation. Item

Biomarkers News

> Dozens of new biomarkers gauge ovarian cancer survival prospects. Report

> Investigators profile a lethal tumor cell that could spur metastasis. Article

> Verastem gears up for companion Dx mesothelioma treatment trial. More

> Brain atrophy could predict MS, study finds. Story

> Key biomarker measure + CT scan predict melanoma survival odds. Item

Drug Delivery News

@MichaelGFierce: Merck, Celgene cancer nanomeds combined for better delivery. Report | Follow @MichaelGFierce

> Researchers open window through blood-brain barrier. Story

> ClearPoint MRI-guided device sheds light on drug delivery to the brain. Editor's corner

> 'Spider' protein can deliver stable vaccines in high concentration. More

> Insuline's InsuPatch delivery device suffers FDA setback. Item

And Finally… Researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard University have discovered a possible new mechanism to halt the disease process in Alzheimer's. Blocking the activity of a little-known protein could clear beta-amyloid plaques that form in the brains of Alzheimer's patients--a hallmark of the disease. Story