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Merck Co Inc

BUSINESS
March 27, 2007 | From Reuters
Merck & Co. and Schering-Plough Corp. plan to dig more deeply into the lucrative market for cholesterol-lowering drugs by developing a pill that combines their drug Zetia with Lipitor, the world's bestselling medicine. Pfizer Inc.'s U.S. patent on Lipitor is expected to expire as soon as 2010, paving the way for other companies to make generic versions of the blockbuster drug. Pfizer is not involved in the deal.
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BUSINESS
March 13, 2007 | From Bloomberg News
Merck & Co.'s Vioxx painkiller helped cause an Idaho mail carrier's heart attack, a New Jersey jury found, ordering the drug maker to pay him and his wife $47.5 million in a retrial of a case the man originally lost. Jurors in Atlantic City imposed actual damages of $20 million and punitive damages of $27.5 million after ruling that Vioxx was partly to blame for Frederick Humeston's 2001 heart attack.
BUSINESS
March 3, 2007 | From Reuters
Jurors in New Jersey found that Merck & Co. failed to provide adequate warnings about health risks tied to its withdrawn arthritis drug Vioxx in one case, but they decided that it gave adequate warning in another in two suits tried simultaneously.
BUSINESS
March 1, 2007 | From Bloomberg News
Merck & Co. raised its earnings forecast for the first quarter on higher demand for new drugs including a cervical cancer vaccine and a diabetes pill. First-quarter profit probably will be 63 cents to 67 cents a share when costs for job cuts and plant closings are excluded, said Whitehouse Station, N.J.-based Merck. The forecast beat the average estimate of 59 cents a share, excluding restructuring costs, of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
BUSINESS
February 21, 2007 | From Times Staff Reports and the Associated Press
Merck & Co., bowing to pressure from parents and medical groups, is immediately suspending its lobbying campaign to persuade state legislatures to mandate that adolescent girls get the company's new vaccine against cervical cancer as a requirement for school attendance. The drug maker, which announced the change Tuesday, had been criticized for quietly funding the campaign, via a third party, to require that 11- and 12-year-old girls get the three-dose vaccine in order to attend school.
BUSINESS
February 15, 2007 | Kathy M. Kristof, Times Staff Writer
And you thought your tax bill was bad. Pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. agreed Wednesday to pay $2.3 billion to settle a long-standing tax dispute with the Internal Revenue Service over a series of partnerships the company used in the 1990s to cut its income taxes. The deal was the second-largest reported tax settlement after a $3.4-billion deal reached in September with British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline. Still, the settlement was significantly less than the $3.
BUSINESS
February 14, 2007 | From Reuters
The Food and Drug Administration said it was notifying healthcare providers and consumers about reports of about 28 cases of infants suffering a serious bowel condition after receiving Merck & Co.'s new vaccine against rotavirus. The FDA said it was not clear how many of the 28 reported cases were caused by the vaccine. It said the condition, known as intussusception, can occur in the absence of vaccination.
BUSINESS
January 31, 2007 | From Bloomberg News
Merck & Co.'s profit fell as generic competition eroded sales of its top-selling cholesterol pill Zocor, and Wyeth reported a fifth straight earnings increase on demand for new arthritis and pneumonia treatments. Merck, the third-largest U.S. drug maker, said Tuesday that net income dropped 58% in the fourth quarter, partly because of costs for acquiring a gene technology that won a Nobel Prize last year. Madison, N.J.
BUSINESS
January 31, 2007 | From the Associated Press
Merck & Co. is helping bankroll efforts to pass state laws requiring girls as young as 11 or 12 to receive the drug maker's new vaccine against the sexually transmitted cervical-cancer virus. Some conservatives and parents' rights groups say such a requirement would encourage premarital sex and interfere with the way they raise their children, and they say Merck's push for such laws is underhanded. But the company said its lobbying efforts had been aboveboard.
BUSINESS
January 19, 2007 | From Bloomberg News
Merck & Co. was granted a mistrial Thursday when a Los Angeles jury couldn't reach a verdict after six days of deliberations in a case over the heart attacks of two men who used the company's Vioxx painkiller. California Superior Court Judge Victoria Chaney sent the jury of seven women and five men home after they deadlocked. A lawyer for the plaintiffs said the case would probably be retried in April. Merck, which faces 27,000 Vioxx suits, has won eight of 12 cases tried so far.
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