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NEWS
July 10, 2015 | By Walter F. Naedele, Inquirer Staff Writer
When Dr. Marvin E. Jaffe joined the former Merck, Sharp & Dohme Research Laboratories in 1970, son Jonathan said, he hit his stride. "During his career at Merck," his son wrote in an appreciation of his father, "he was responsible for bringing a number of first-in-class drugs" to market, such as Sinemet for Parkinson's disease and Mevacor for cholesterol treatment. And referring to the joint venture with the firm AB Astra, his son said, Dr. Jaffe "had an integral role in the Astra-Merck alliance, which resulted in the development" of the heartburn drug Prilosec.
NEWS
April 6, 2015
The title of Kenneth Rowen Heimlich was reported incorrectly in an obituary Friday. Dr. Heimlich was former executive director of pharmaceutical research and development for Merck, Sharp & Dohme.
NEWS
April 4, 2015 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Kenneth Rowen Heimlich, 82, of West Chester, former director of research for Merck, Sharp & Dohme, died Tuesday, March 17, of Alzheimer's disease at his home. Born to Herman and Lula Heimlich in Rockford, Ill., Dr. Heimlich grew up in Indiana. He earned a bachelor of science degree in 1954, a master's degree in 1956, and a doctorate in 1958, all in pharmaceutical chemistry from Purdue University. Dr. Heimlich was director of pharmaceutical research and development for Merck, Sharp & Dohme Research Laboratories in West Point.
BUSINESS
December 10, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
Merck & Co. dove deeper into the antibiotic drug market Monday when it agreed to buy Cubist Pharmaceuticals for $9.5 billion, including debt. The deal would pay Cubist stockholders $102 per share in cash, which Merck calculates is a 35 percent premium to Cubist's average closing price in the preceding five trading days. The agreement includes $8.4 billion for the shares and assumption of about $1.1 billion in company debt. Merck is based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., and has large facilities in Upper Gwynedd and West Point, Montgomery County.
BUSINESS
November 27, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
Dr. Mel Kohn is at the intersection of the governmental, nonprofit, and corporate efforts directed at the Ebola crisis in West Africa. Kohn, who lives in Philadelphia, works for Merck & Co. in West Point, Montgomery County. He joined Merck Vaccines after 14 years of work in public health for the State of Oregon. With the drugmaker's office of corporate philanthropy funding the trip, he and Merck colleague John Grabenstein visited Sierra Leone in October as part of a group put together by the Virginia-based nonprofit Project HOPE and invited by the Sierra Leone government.
BUSINESS
November 26, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
Itching to compete and join the fight to solve one of the world's most talked-about health concerns, Merck & Co. got back in the business of making Ebola vaccine Monday. The pharmaceutical giant announced that it will pay at least $30 million to license a potential drug from a small, Iowa-based company called NewLink Genetics Corp. NewLink will get a second payment of $20 million once the next phase of clinical trials starts, which might be in the first months of 2015 - a sign of the accelerated process.
BUSINESS
October 28, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
A bit more than a year after announcing plans to cut 8,500 jobs, including hundreds in the Philadelphia suburbs, Merck & Co. chief executive officer Ken Frazier said Monday that the drugmaker was on track to deliver the $2.5 billion in annual cost savings that he promised to Wall Street. "Last October, we launched a multiyear initiative to transform Merck and build a platform for sustained future growth," Frazier said in a statement. "One year later, we delivered solid third-quarter results and are making steady progress in our transformation, including divesting noncore assets, reducing our expense base, and investing in our promising new product launches and pipeline.
BUSINESS
September 24, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
The other Merck said Monday that it would spend $17 billion to buy the chemical company Sigma-Aldrich Corp., based in St. Louis. Merck KGaA of Darmstadt, Germany, made Monday's announcement. Merck & Co. is based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., and has a big operation in Montgomery County. Both companies make pharmaceutical products. They are separate corporations now, but it was not always so. Amid the death, destruction, and fear of foreigners during World War I, the U.S. government announced in 1917 that it would seize several companies with German connections.
BUSINESS
September 15, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
Merck & Co. said on Sept. 4 that the Food and Drug Administration approved what Merck said was a groundbreaking cancer treatment that it hopes will cure many patients and generate billions of dollars in revenue. On the same day, Bristol-Myers Squibb said bunk to that, alleging patent infringement in a lawsuit in federal court in Delaware, where both global pharmaceutical giants are registered. Bristol-Myers, whose version of that type of cancer drug was approved in Japan in July, hoped the legal move would thwart Merck in the industry race to sell expensive cancer medicine.
BUSINESS
September 6, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
In a huge boost to the research efforts of drugmaker Merck & Co., the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved a new type of drug that unlocks the body's immune system to attack cancer cells. Merck, which is based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., and employs thousands of people in Montgomery County, had staked much of its future hopes on approval and then sales, which analysts expect will generate billions of dollars a year. The chemical name of the drug is pembrolizumab and its brand name will be Keytruda.
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