Roche hands back rights to diabetes drug; Syndax preps pivotal lung cancer study;

@FierceBiotech: Merck cuts 51 jobs as it closes Inspire site. Story | Follow @FierceBiotech

@JohnCFierce: Novartis halts Afinitor breast cancer study on positive data; preps new app for blockbuster market. Article | Follow @JohnCFierce

> Japan's Chugai Pharmaceuticals says that Roche has handed back the rights to an experimental diabetes drug--CSG452--after completing a pipeline review. Story

> Execs at Syndax are in Amsterdam this week, where they will unveil new data on their mid-stage lung cancer drug entinostat. The company is laying the foundation for a late-stage study of the drug, which is slated to begin next year. Story

> ReNeuron has struck a deal with Angel Biotechnology on manufacturing  its stem cell therapy for stroke. Report

Pharma News

@FiercePharma: Medicare won't drop Avastin for breast cancer. Item | Follow @FiercePharma

> Study: Pfizer's Chantix raises heart risks 72%. Report

> New breast cancer data bolsters Novartis' Afinitor. Story

> Teva nabs $23M with risky U.K. launch of Lipitor copy. Piece

> Harvard docs punished for undisclosed pharma ties. News

Manufacturing News

> McKesson VP reveals secret to meeting distribution challenges. News

> Baxter beats environmental goals in 2010. Item

> For PwC, ops and business strengths drive PRTM buy. Article

> Vax industry braces as China nears global manufacturer status. Item

> Republicans question drugmakers in heparin probe. Report

> How MIT's Hockfield can drive a pharma manufacturing makeover. Story

Biotech IT

> MD credibility helps convert social media users to trial volunteers. Item

> Google Health going out with a whimper. News

> Open-source start-up TLS lands seed funding. Report

> Hackers, some helpful, penetrate big-name pharma and healthcare. Article

> IBM, others herd trial data to cloud. Item

> India trains IT savvy on drug trials, safety. News

Biotech Research News

> Brain stem cells are fruitful and multiply. Item

> Autism experts skeptical of study linking disorder to environment. Report

> Scientists crack histamine code that could lead to better allergy relief. News

And Finally... The Los Angeles Times turns the spotlight on the state stem cell agency's million dollars in pay for two top figures and wonders whether the steep salaries will harm its chances for a new $3 billion stem cell initiative. Report