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BUSINESS
July 13, 2006
Jurors ended their first day of deliberations without a verdict in a lawsuit against Merck & Co. Inc. over whether its pain-relieving drug Vioxx contributed to a New Jersey woman's heart attack.
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BUSINESS
March 10, 2009 | William Heisel
Big Pharma got bigger on Monday with Merck Co.'s announcement that it would acquire rival Schering-Plough Corp. in a cash-and-stock transaction worth $41.1 billion. And the deal is being made easier by U.S. taxpayers. Faced with tough competition from generics, fewer potential blockbuster drugs in development and the prospect of a government overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system, drug makers are consolidating. In January, the world's largest pharmaceutical company, Pfizer Inc.
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BUSINESS
December 14, 2007 | From Times Wire Services
The government should reject Merck & Co. Inc.'s third bid to sell a cholesterol-lowering pill without a doctor's prescription, an advisory panel ruled. Advisors to the Food and Drug Administration voted 10 to 2 with one abstention against Merck's proposal for a low-dose, over-the-counter version of its cholesterol fighter Mevacor. FDA officials usually follow the panel's recommendations.
BUSINESS
October 23, 2008 | times wire services
Drug maker Merck & Co. said it would slash 7,200 jobs as part of a new restructuring program that comes as its third-quarter profit plunged 28% because of a hefty restructuring charge and flat sales. The maker of allergy and asthma treatment Singulair and cervical cancer vaccine Gardasil said it would cut nearly 13% of its workforce to lower overhead and become more competitive in its second major restructuring in less than three years. Merck shares closed down $1.96 at $28.01. Whitehouse Station, N.J.-based Merck took a $612-million charge for restructuring, reducing net income for its third quarter to $1.09 billion, or 51 cents a share.
BUSINESS
August 23, 2005 | From Reuters
Britons who believe they suffered after taking Merck & Co. Inc.'s painkiller Vioxx plan to sue the drug maker in the U.S. courts next year, a law firm said. Attorney Gerard Dervan said it made sense for the 150 British plaintiffs to pursue Merck in the U.S. courts because British authorities had so far decided not to provide legal aid and British courts could force the plaintiffs to pay Merck's costs if they lost.
NATIONAL
April 13, 2007 | From Times Wire Reports
A painkiller proposed as a successor to Vioxx should not be approved, a panel of federal health advisors recommended to the FDA. The nonbinding 20-1 vote was on the prescription drug Arcoxia, made by Merck & Co. Inc. A Food and Drug Administration drug safety expert had told the panel the drug might substantially increase the risk of stroke and heart attack and was no more effective for pain relief than other medicines in the same class.
BUSINESS
December 25, 1996 | Times Staff and Wire Reports
Merck & Co. Inc., claiming exclusive rights to distribute a chicken pox vaccine in the United States and Canada, sued four affiliates of SmithKline Beecham in an effort to block them from distributing their vaccine in the United States. Named as defendants are SmithKline Beecham U.S. affiliates SKB Pharmaceuticals Co., SKB Holdings Corp., SKB Corp. and the Belgian affiliate SKB Biologicals. No one at SmithKline's U.S. offices in Philadelphia could be reached for comment.
BUSINESS
December 1, 2004 | From Reuters
New York filed a lawsuit Tuesday against Merck & Co. Inc., claiming the state's pension fund lost $171 million from its investment in the drug maker after the company recalled its Vioxx painkiller. New York State Comptroller Alan Hevesi said he was seeking to be the lead plaintiff in a shareholder class-action suit against Merck and aimed to have the shareholder cases against the company consolidated in U.S. District Court in New Jersey.
NEWS
May 22, 1992 | MAURA DOLAN, TIMES ENVIRONMENTAL WRITER
Spurred by advances in biotechnology, drug companies are showing renewed interest in exploring nature for new medicines. At the forefront of the trend is pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. Inc., which has entered into an agreement with a scientific institute in Costa Rica to screen plants, insects and microorganisms found in the tropical nation's lush forests.
BUSINESS
April 20, 1993 | From Associated Press
Fifteen major U.S. and European pharmaceutical companies on Monday announced that they will share information from AIDS research efforts in an attempt to reduce drug-development time. After more than a year of formal discussions, the group, which includes Merck & Co., Pfizer Inc., Glaxo of Britain and Switzerland's Hoffman-La Roche, has agreed to exchange clinical data and drug supplies so that antiviral medicines can be tested in the best possible combinations.
BUSINESS
April 16, 2008 | From the Associated Press
Two new reports involving the painkiller Vioxx raise fresh concerns about how drug companies influence the interpretation and publication of medical research. The reports claim that Merck & Co. frequently paid academic scientists to take credit for research articles prepared by company-hired medical writers, a practice called ghostwriting.
BUSINESS
February 8, 2008 | From the Associated Press
In one of the biggest U.S. healthcare fraud settlements ever, Merck & Co. will pay $671 million to settle claims it overcharged the government for four popular drugs and bribed doctors to prescribe its drugs, federal prosecutors said Thursday.
BUSINESS
February 7, 2008 | From the Associated Press
At least three generic versions of the popular osteoporosis treatment Fosamax are headed for pharmacy shelves with the expiration of the drug's main patent Wednesday, bringing patients hefty savings. Two of the biggest makers of generic drugs, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. and Barr Pharmaceuticals Inc., said Wednesday they would immediately begin selling generic Fosamax, which is made by Merck & Co.
BUSINESS
February 6, 2008 | Bill Berkrot, Reuters
Fred Hassan rode to the rescue of a foundering Schering-Plough Corp. in 2003, and by 2006, with a remarkable turnaround declared complete, the company was back on a growth trajectory. But the highly regarded chief executive unexpectedly finds himself at the center of a firestorm involving the cholesterol drug that fueled the company's reversal of fortune. The furor over Vytorin threatens the reputation of the drug industry's golden boy and, some say, his job. Schering-Plough and Merck & Co.
BUSINESS
January 26, 2008 | From Reuters
U.S. regulators said Friday that they would review whether to take action over Merck & Co. and Schering-Plough Corp.'s popular cholesterol drug Vytorin after a study showed it was no better than a generic in preventing the buildup of fatty plaque in blood vessels. The Food and Drug Administration said it had not received a final report on the study, called Enhance. The agency's review of Vytorin will take about six months after final results are received, the FDA said.
BUSINESS
January 23, 2008 | From Bloomberg News
Merck & Co. and Schering-Plough Corp. suspended television ads Tuesday for the cholesterol pills Vytorin and Zetia after a study questioned the benefit of the medicines. The Vytorin commercials were among the most widely aired drug ads, featuring people dressed as food items to show the pill lowers cholesterol from food as well as from genetics. The ads were voluntarily and temporarily halted, Schering-Plough spokesman Lee Davies said.
BUSINESS
January 29, 1998 | DIANE SEO, Diane Seo is a frequent contributor to The Times
Balding men, take notice. The battle for your business has begun, with an extra-strength version of Rogaine pitted against a new hair-growing pill called Propecia. Be prepared for a bombardment of print and television ads this year, as the makers of the two products lure customers with scientific findings, catchy phrases and even testimonials from balding sports stars. The marketing battle began last month after Merck & Co. received approval from the U.S.
BUSINESS
November 15, 2007 | Daniel Costello, Times Staff Writer
The $4.85-billion settlement offered last week by pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. to patients stricken by heart attacks and strokes after taking the company's painkiller Vioxx could mean the end to one of the most unpleasant and costliest chapters in the pharmaceutical industry's history. But could it unravel? About 47,000 plaintiffs have until March 1 to decide whether to take immediate payouts estimated to range from $50,000 to $1.5 million.
BUSINESS
January 19, 2008 | From Reuters
More than 3,000 former users of Merck & Co.'s withdrawn Vioxx pain drug have signed up to take part in a $4.85-billion settlement deal that a federal judge said Friday was in the best interests of both sides. Lawyers for Merck and plaintiffs who claim to have been harmed by Vioxx were in U.S. District Court to give a status report on the settlement to Judge Eldon Fallon, who had presided over all federal Vioxx trials and is overseeing the settlement process.
BUSINESS
December 14, 2007 | From Times Wire Services
The government should reject Merck & Co. Inc.'s third bid to sell a cholesterol-lowering pill without a doctor's prescription, an advisory panel ruled. Advisors to the Food and Drug Administration voted 10 to 2 with one abstention against Merck's proposal for a low-dose, over-the-counter version of its cholesterol fighter Mevacor. FDA officials usually follow the panel's recommendations.
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