Finns do some southern shopping


Milan/Turku – Biotie Therapies ASA’s announcement that it had signed an agreement to acquire Newron Pharma­ceuticals S.p.A. for €45m is both good and bad news for the Italian biotechnology sector. While Italy is losing one of its most dynamic biotech companies, at least the deal is also proof that Italian innovative companies are attractive at a European level. Bio­tie wants to create a leading European bio­pharmaceutical company focused on central nervous system (CNS) drug development. The deal is being touted as a European Union cross-border merger. Biotie will issue Newron shareholders close to 90 million initial consideration shares, with an option for more if specific milestones are reached. According to Biotie, the transaction creates a “deep pipeline” led by two drugs – nalmefene and safinamide – both in late-stage Phase III development, targeting alcohol dependence and Parkinson’s disease respectively. Biotie President and CEO Timo Veromaa is especially excited about safinamide, “a compelling late-stage asset with potential for significant near-term milestones.” In the short-term, Biotie hopes to cash in on two other substances for the CNS market.



Milan – Everyone agrees that Italy is not Greece, but it is common wisdom that the country could also be doing better. Considering the meagre growth of the Italian economy in the last decade however, data fom the 2011 survey of...



Milan – Italian drugmaker Newron Pharmaceuticals S.p.A. and Merck Serono have broadened the scope of their 5-year-old collaboration on CNS drugs. In addition to the Parkinson’s treatment safinamide, under the terms of a new...



Milan/Berlin – Swiss-Italian biotech Philogen SpA has revoked its plan to sell a 23% stake worth EUR65.3m and go public on the Milan stock exchange this Friday. The move came after German Bayer HealthCare unexpectedly terminated...



Rome – The EUR2.5m ERC Advanced Grants are the Grammies of European science – not in the same league as a Nobel Prize, but still a lucrative honor. In the fourth round since 2007, the European Research Council awarded some a590m...



Modena/London – Researchers from Germany, Italy and the UK have identified a molecule that is key to the onset of addiction and also involved into memory formation (EMBO Journal, doi:10.1038/emboj.2010.279). According to results...



Genoa/Philadelphia — The inexpensive anti-gout drug allopurinol can counteract colorectal adenoma progression, according to data presented yesterday at the 9th Annual AACR Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research Conference...

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