AstraZeneca announced it would cease future development of AtheroGenics' experimental heart drug AGI-1067 after multiple clinical failures. The move will cost AstraZeneca $83 million and means AtheroGenics will reacquire all worldwide rights to AGI-1067, which it said it will continue to develop in a statement. Meanwhile, AstraZeneca reported an 11% increase in pretax profits during 1Q07 on a 13% rise in sales. Net pretax income was $2.27 billion, as the British pharmaceutical company reaped the benefits of a weaker dollar. Reuters consensus estimates called for pretax profits of $2.22 billion.
Sources: Press Release, Reuters, ShareCast, Briefing.com
Commentary: AstraZeneca to Buy MedImmune for $15.6 Billion • AtheroGenics' Heart Drug Shows Promise on Secondary Goals • AtheroGenics' Uncertainty Continues, Will Remain for Some Time
Stocks/ETFs to watch: AstraZeneca (AZN), AtheroGenics (AGIX). Competitors: Pfizer (PFE), Amgen (AMGN), Biogen (BIIB), Bristol Myers Squibb (BMY), Glaxosmithkline (GSK), Eli Lilly (LLY), Teva (TEVA), Merck (MRK), Schering-Plough (SGP), Sanofi-Aventis (SNY). ETFs: iShares S&P Global Healthcare Sector (IXJ), Pharmaceutical HOLDRS (PPH), Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT)
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