U.K. preps 'breakthrough' drug program; Eisai gets a new CEO;

@FierceBiotech: J&J partners with a biotech startup on a new approach to Alzheimer's. More | Follow @FierceBiotech

@JohnCFierce: I've seen plenty of instances of chutzpah in biotech, but these Northwest Bio claims cross a line into BS terrain. News | Follow @JohnCFierce

@DamianFierce: J&J, Pharmacyclics and the future of Big Pharma dealmaking. Story | Follow @DamianFierce

@EmilyMFierce: NIH faces flat funds under president's 2015 budget proposal . More | Follow @EmilyMFierce

> The Telegraph reports that U.K. officials are preparing their own version of a "breakthrough" drug designation for experimental therapies. The FDA began its BTD program at the beginning of 2013, and the U.K. appears set to travel the same road, offering a shot at an accelerated approval for new drugs which are badly needed by patients. Story

> Japan's Eisai says that Yuji Matsue has been named chairman and chief executive officer, succeeding Lonnel Coats, who is retiring in June. Release

> The FDA has agreed to review Lundbeck's NDA for intravenous carbamazepine, a formulation of the anti-epileptic drug carbamazepine. Release

> Omeros ($OMER) says it garnered positive data using OMS721 in "ex vivo studies of endothelial activation relevant to the pathophysiology of human atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome, a form of thrombotic microangiopathy." Release

Medical Device News

@FierceMedDev: Score for Georgetown U.--a team there developed a Dx that appears to predict the onset of Alzheimer's. Story | Follow @FierceMedDev

@MarkHFierce: Here are 10 M&A med tech deals announced or closed in 2013 set to have a real impact on the industry. Special Report | Follow @MarkHFierce

@MichaelGFierce: Boston Heart launches a new inflammation test for cardiovascular disease. More from FierceDiagnostics | Follow @MichaelGFierce

@EmilyWFierce: Not just for humans anymore: new medical devices for dogs measure everything from anxiety to activity level. Article | Follow @EmilyWFierce

> Surgical tool maker Invuity will boost its sales force and move to a larger HQ. More

> Olympus is selling the OP-1 plant it bought from Stryker 4 years ago. Story

> Smith & Nephew and OrthoSensor to co-market orthopedic surgical tech and tools. Item

Pharma News

@FiercePharma: Top-read this weekend: Gilead's Sovaldi sales through the roof already, analyst predicts at least $8B this year. Story | Follow @FiercePharma

@TracyStaton: RT from BioPharmaJosh: WSJ looks at how Johnson & Johnson beat out Novartis & Celgene for Imbruvica. Story via the Wall Street Journal (sub. req.) | Follow @TracyStaton

@EricPFierce: EMA wants warning on Ambien type drugs that landed Kerry Kennedy in court. More | Follow @EricPFierce

@CarlyHFierce: AstraZeneca says Nexium pills with Ranbaxy ingredient are safe to use. Article | Follow @CarlyHFierce

> A key Actos trial revs up in Vegas with demands for a $1B-plus judgment. News

> Novartis orphan drug Jakavi nabs 'blockbuster' forecasts on new data. Piece

> Long-acting hemophilia meds portend a pricing fight with older drugs. More

Biotech IT News

> Illumina backs Venter's plan to create world's largest human genome sequencing center. Story

> Big Data, social media and mobile double their share of biopharma marketing mix. Report

> Google-backed genomics alliance details data interoperability plans. Story

> FDA informatics chief: NGS is an immediate priority for the agency. Article

> Scripps shares genetic sequences of healthy elderly to boost Alzheimer's and cancer research. Article

> Eli Lilly begins sharing photos on Instagram. Brief

CRO News

> WuXi soars on manufacturing and plots another leap in 2014. Story

> INC buys its way into the Middle East with MEK deal. Article

> Celerion stretches into South Korea for translational studies. Story

> Harlan partners up for early-stage drug development. News

> Columbia Labs inches forward in its first quarter as a CRO. Story

> Quintiles' bankrollers eye another $1B in second offering. Brief

Suggested Articles

It’s been a good year for Intellia: One of its founders, Jennifer Doudna, Ph.D., nabbed the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for her CRISPR research.

After stints at Eli Lilly, Boehringer Ingelheim and Bristol Myers Squibb, Sid Kerkar, M.D., is hopping over to a small biotech.

Two long noncoding RNAs called TROLL-2 and TROLL-3 influence protein signaling to drive the progression of breast cancer, a new study revealed.