Abbott reports that it plans to develop two new formulations of its HIV medicines, Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir) and Norvir (ritonavir). The company is currently investigating a new powder formulation of Norvir as well as a co-formulation of three HIV medicines: lopinavir, ritonavir and 3TC (lamivudine). The Norvir powder formulation is intended to make it easier to store the medicine. The investigational fixed-dose combination of lopinavir, ritonavir, and 3TC could reduce the daily number of tablets a patient takes of the fixed-dose combination. If developed and approved, the fixed-dose combination would be designed to be taken with one additional anti-HIV medicine. Abbott is developing the new formulations with the goal to make a contribution to the World Health Organization’s Treatment 2.0 strategy. This strategy includes providing treatment options to make the most of the resources available in those developing countries that carry the heaviest HIV burden.
Bristol-Myers Squibb is collaborating with the National Science Resources Center’s RxeSEARCH for a week-long curriculum program using the pharmaceutical R&D process to teach teachers and their students about science, mathematics, and societal issues. Seventeen teachers from 14 high schools and middle schools in New Jersey and New York participated in the program, which was held in July at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Center for Science Teaching and Learning at Rider University in Lawrenceville, New Jersey.
Eli Lilly is partnering with the GlobalGiving Foundation, a nonprofit organization that helps individuals and corporate donors contribute directly to grassroots charitable organizations, to offer Lilly employees a customized Lilly Global Giving website, where employees may choose from multiple projects in line with the Lily’s corporate social responsibility goals in health, hunger, education, and the environment. Employees who donate $25 or more to projects featured on the website will have their donations automatically matched by the Lilly Foundation, the company’s philanthropic arm.
In other news, Eli Lilly has made a charitable contribution to the Patient Advocate Foundation to enable the foundations’ expansion of patient-service programs, including case management and copay relief for patients, to support a new fund for patients with nonsquamous non-small-cell lung cancer.
Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has launched Healthy Future 2015, a five-year strategic roadmap for its citizenship and sustainability priorities. The plan includes the company’s efforts in global health initiatives and sustainability efforts, including its goals for reducing carbon-dioxide emissions, water usage, waste disposal, and product-stewardship efforts.
In other news, J&J is sponsoring a swim relay across the English Channel as part of a fundraising effort for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. The program is supported by Animas, a J&J company providing diabetes-management products. Also, Janseen Therapeutics, a division of J&J’s Janssen Products, is launching an initiative to encourage HIV testing, and the Johnson & Johnson Campaign for Nursing’s Future , a multiyear, $50-million initiative to support nurses and nursing education, is sponsoring an Amazing Nurses national contest to recognize contributions by individuals in the field of nursing.
Merck & Co. reported on three patient-focused programs to support the hepatitis C community.They included a concert program as part of an awareness campaign launched by Merck and the American Liver Foundation (AFL), a free hepatitis C testing and educational program launched in select major league baseball parks, and a grant to the World Hepatitis Alliance, an organization engaged in preventing the spread of viral hepatitis.
Roche has been awarded an exclusive contract by the National Laboratory Health Laboratory Services in South Africa for the support of the Early Infant Diagnosis program, an infant-testing initiative that seeks to identify HIV-infected children during the first months of life.
Roche also is collaborating with the Salzburg Festival, a music festival annually held in Austria, to bring students of the sciences, arts, and music to discuss creativity in the sciences and arts. The study week, which first took place in 2007, encourages students to share in discovering concepts of creativity and innovation in science, music, and the arts.
Sanofi has entered into a research collaboration with Weill Cornell Medical College to identify new anti-infectives that aim to shorten the course of treatment of tuberculosis (TB) and provide therapies against drug-susceptible and drug-resistant strains of TB. Sanofi will prove 80,000 chemical compounds to Weill Cornell, where the compounds will be screened to assess their ability to inhibit growth of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Weill Cornell has obtained funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for screening activities. Sanofi and Weill Cornell will jointly determine whether any compounds screened through the collaboration should be optimized for potential development.