Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals

Novartis, the Swiss pharmaceutical company, will appear before the Indian Supreme Court Wednesday to appeal against a patent rejection for a popular cancer drug. A decision in favor of the company could have a devastating impact on cheap supplies of many kinds of generic drugs for poor patients.
Appalled by the announcement of a collaboration between the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and General Motors (GM) on a breast cancer drug trial, activists today criticized the project as a profit-seeking move for the automobile corporation and the pharmaceutical companies involved.
Two patents granted in the United States between 2000 and 2002 and another for which an application has been filed have put "maca", a high altitude Andean plant that is used by indigenous people in Peru, at the centre of a new battle against biopiracy, which involves the construction of an international network against the misappropriation of traditional knowledge.
Eli Lilly, an Indianapolis based company, that has sold insulin products to diabetes patients since 1921, has quietly raised some U.S. prices 700 percent in the last 20 years by marketing so-called improved versions to consumers. Novo Nordisk, a Danish company, has also profited handsomely from this practice.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been accused of bribing doctors in China in order to boost sales. Chinese government officials say they have uncovered evidence of a bribery scheme involving 700 travel agencies who were used to funnel as much as three billion yuan ($480 million) in payments.
Scalpers are doing a booming business in key medical drugs by taking advantage of U.S. patients and hospitals when they are desperate for supplies from the poorly regulated $46 billion global contract-manufacturing industry.
As you already know, the governments of the western hemisphere and their corporate bosses are signing our names to the Free Trade Agreement of the Americas as we speak. This secret treaty's being made to destroy activist victories, privatize public services, and gut public safeguards; to roll back everything that 500 years of resistance has won.
AIDS activists are preparing rallies and demonstrations Thursday in several cities around the world to protest against global soft-drink giant Coca-Cola, which they charge must do more to help and treat its HIV-infected workers and their families in sub-Saharan Africa.
Early in March, Bausch & Lomb received a troubling phone call from a New Jersey eye doctor. Dr. David S. Chu, a specialist in cornea diseases, alerted the company that three of his recent patients had been afflicted with a microbe that caused a potentially blinding eye infection.
Merck's lobbying campaign for mandatory vaccination of school girls provided funding for a prominent women's non-profit. The ensuing uproar has created a backlash against the pharmaceutical giant.