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China Pharma and Biotech Weekly Update - Dec 8, 2010


A steady stream... of deals: GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK) is the process of completing a deal to purchase China specialty pharmaceutical player Nanjing MeiRui Pharma in a transaction expected to be worth upwards of USD 100 million. Nanjing-based MeiRui focuses on the urology therapeutic area - the company's drugs include naftopidil and finasteride, both used in the setting of benign prostatic hyperplasia, as well as tolterodine, for incontinence. GSK markets dutasteride (Avodart) outside of China for BPH.
Click on this week's SOURCE Snapshot to see Nanjing MeiRui's China registration history.
source sanpshot
In one of China's largest pharmaceutical/distribution transactions to date, Shanghai Pharmaceutical will acquire controlling ownership of pharmaceutical distributor China Health System Ltd. for up to RMB 4 billion. Consolidation continues at a brisk pace in the drug distribution sector, with Shanghai Pharma and Sinopharm, among others, buying regional distributors left and right. US distribution giant Cardinal Health has also jumped into the game, announcing the acquisition of privately-held Zuellig Pharma China last week for a whopping USD 470 million. There may be some interesting financial reporting ahead for publicly-listed Cardinal. For more on procurement and distribution, see Volumes 31 and 36 of the China Pharmaceutical & Biotechnology Review . (GBI SOURCEusers will find the article in the Special Reports section .) Also, see the past GBI Interviewwith Eric Zwisler, former head of Zuellig China, which GBI SOURCE users will find in theExclusive Interviews section.
In-licensing/Gout-licensing: Other notable transactions last week included 3SBio licensing rights to pegsiticase, a pegylated recombinant uricase used in refractory gout and other conditions, from New-Jersey based biotech EnzymeRx, and Sumitomo's announcement of a planned purchase of a 29% stake in China-based/Singapore-listed C&O (Changao) Pharmaceutical. (Another large Japanese trading house, Mitsui, recently completed a private placement of USD 12.5 million into Hutchison MediPharma.)
Pricing pressures persist: The NDRC has released a new list of national maximum drug retail prices slated to go into effect as of December 12. The new list contains 174 products which will have their maximum retail price reduced, as well as 16 products which will no longer receive separate pricing status and have been demoted to general pricing. The average price reduction is reported to be 19%. Of the items on the price reduction list, 111 are from overseas manufacturers; of those on the separate pricing cancelation list, 13 are from overseas manufacturers including Lilly, Pfizer (2), Johnson & Johnson, Merck KGaA (3), Apotex, GSK, Takeda, Astellas, AstraZeneca, and Novartis. In other pricing news, the Anhui Provincial Pricing Bureau announced that it will cap maximum drug retail markups at RMB 10 beginning December 10. China's pharma landscape is changing quickly- stay informed at
General Biologic's managing director Dr. Jon Zifferblatt has been featured in this month's Pharmaceutical Executive magazine. Click here to read Dr. Zifferblatt’s in-depth analysis on China's procurement and tendering system!
Several full text articles are free to all headline subscribers. Subscribers to CPB Review have access to full text articles for all stories. 

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