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BUSINESS
March 7, 2009 | Associated Press
Swiss drug developer Roche Holding on Friday boosted its hostile tender offer for biotechnology pioneer Genentech Inc. to $93 a share, or $45.7 billion in total, after its initial bid failed to pick up much support from shareholders. For weeks, Genentech's board had been calling Roche's $86.50 bid too low, with much of Wall Street saying shareholders probably wouldn't bite at the offer.
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SCIENCE
February 28, 2009 | Thomas H. Maugh II
Landscapers excavating for a koi pond in Boulder, Colo., found a cache of blood-spattered weapons and tools, but instead of calling the police, they summoned an archaeologist from the University of Colorado, six blocks from the site. Douglas B.
BUSINESS
January 31, 2009 | Associated Press
Swiss drug maker Roche Holding surprised Wall Street with plans for a lower-than-expected and hostile $42.1-billion buyout offer for Genentech Inc. on Friday, a move some consider a tactic to force negotiations with the biotechnology behemoth. The $86.50-a-share offer, $2.50 less than an offer rejected in July, sparked some concern from analysts that key personnel at the biotech pioneer could leave, depending on any potential deal.
BUSINESS
January 27, 2009 | TIMES WIRE REPORTS
Amgen Inc.'s profit grew 15% in the fourth quarter, mostly as a result of lower expenses, the company said Monday. Amgen's profit rose to $961 million, or 91 cents per share, compared with $835 million, or 76 cents, a year earlier. Revenue was essentially unchanged at $3.75 billion, as sales rose for its anti-infection drug Neulasta and rheumatoid arthritis treatment Enbrel while sales of its anemia drugs declined further. Excluding one-time costs, Amgen said it earned $1.12 billion in the quarter, or $1.06 per share, up from $1.09 billion, or $1 per share, a year earlier.
BUSINESS
December 10, 2008 | Associated Press
Drug maker Merck & Co. said Tuesday that it was taking steps to become a leader in generic biotechnology drugs and sales in emerging markets. During its annual business briefing, Merck tried to reassure investors it had the right strategy to resume growing -- after recently announcing another major restructuring and forecasting lower profit and flat revenue in 2009 because of generic competition, the recession and other problems.
SCIENCE
December 6, 2008 | Times Staff and Wire Reports
A test strain of genetically modified cotton was accidentally harvested and mixed in with other harvested cotton in Texas last month, but Food and Drug Administration officials said this week they do not believe the incident poses safety concerns. About a quarter of a ton of the experimental cottonseed engineered to contain a protein that produces a pesticide was combined with about 60 tons of commercial cotton growing nearby. About half the cotton was processed into cottonseed oil and animal feed and used in feedlots before the mistake was discovered.
BUSINESS
November 15, 2008 | Times Wire Services
Pfizer Inc. said it had launched a biotechnology research unit focused on developing stem-cell-based treatments for a wide range of conditions. The unit, called Pfizer Regenerative Medicine, will be located in two of the global hubs for biotech research -- Cambridge, England, and Cambridge, Mass. New York-based Pfizer plans to invest about $100 million in the project over the next three to five years.
BUSINESS
October 23, 2008 | times wire services
Biotech drug maker Amgen Inc. said Wednesday that its profit leaped in the third quarter, thanks to a comparison with a prior-year quarter weighed down by acquisition and restructuring charges. Because of higher sales and favorable exchange rates, the company raised its full-year earnings outlook even as it reported declining U.S. sales for its bestselling medication. Amgen earned $1.16 billion, or $1.09 a share, compared with $201 million, or 18 cents, a year earlier. Excluding one-time acquisition and restructuring costs, Amgen said it would have earned $1.23 a share, up 14% from the prior year.
OPINION
June 9, 2008
Re "U.S. defends food policy," June 5 Your story perpetuates the fallacy, encouraged by the biotechnology industry, that genetic engineering increases crop yields. In fact, nearly all of the crops in the U.S. Department of Agriculture's database of approved genetically engineered varieties have been modified for resistance to certain insects or to tolerate applications of herbicides. None has been shown to increase intrinsic crop yields, nor do any have traits for drought tolerance.
OPINION
April 28, 2008 | Bryan A. Liang, Bryan A. Liang is executive director of the Institute of Health Law Studies, California Western School of Law and co-director of the San Diego Center for Patient Safety, UC San Diego School of Medicine.
A toy plane has a handful of parts. A Boeing 747 has several million. This makes sense. Toy planes are small, simple models, while 747s are large, high-performance aircraft that travel more than 500 mph with thousands of component systems acting together. The model costs a few dollars because it's easy to manufacture. The 747 costs about $225 million because of its highly complex nature, testing and the need to ensure safety.
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