Archive


Category: UK

  • Booster COVID jabs offered to all adults in England

    The UK government has said it will step up its COVID-19 booster vaccination dramatically, with everyone in England aged over 18 offered a third dose before the end of the month. Westminster has promised additional support for the devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to step up the booster campaign, and Scotland has […]

  • Omicron set to dominate in UK within weeks, says expert

    The Omicron variant could supersede other strains of COVID-19 within the next few weeks to become dominant in the UK, according to an infectious diseases expert. Professor Paul Hunter of the University of East Anglia told the BBC this morning that it is likely there is already more than 1,000 cases of Omicron (also known […]

  • UK government rubberstamps millions of extra COVID vaccines

    The UK government has placed a 114 million-dose order with Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna – sufficient to provide two doses to every person in Britain – in a bid to future-proof against COVID-19 variants.  Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid, announced the move as researchers race to uncover the effect of existing vaccines on the Omicron […]

  • UK accelerates COVID booster plans in response to Omicron

    The UK looks set to extend its COVID-19 booster vaccination programme to all over-18s, as the number of cases of the new Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 has reached double figures. The gap between second doses and boosters is also being reduced from six to three months in an attempt to get as much protection in […]

  • Report suggests UK’s national vaccine facility is on the block

    The UK’s Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre (VMIC) – unveiled with fanfare by the government in 2018 – is rumoured to be up for sale. The facility at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxford has received £215 million in public money since it was announced, and several companies have submitted bids for the […]

  • AstraZeneca cuts the ribbon on its $1bn R&D lab in Cambridge

    After years of delays and rising costs, AstraZeneca has formally unveiled its $1 billion R&D facility in Cambridge, said to be the biggest science lab of its kind in the UK. The Discovery Centre (DISC) based in the Cambridge Biomedical Campus – first given the green light in 2015 – is being officially opened today […]

  • Valneva gets EU deal for COVID jab, and may sue UK

    Shares in France’s Valneva leaped after it got an EU order to supply 60 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine VLA2001 over the next two years, including 27 million next year. The deal for the adjuvanted, inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine still depends on authorisation of the jab by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) which is due […]

  • Industry welcomes boost to health research in UK budget

    Groups representing the biopharma industry have welcomed an increase in health-specific R&D to £5 billion in the UK autumn budget, despite a longer timeline for reaching the target of £22 billion in overall R&D spending. The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) and BioIndustry Association (BIA) both said that the increase acknowledges the enormous […]

  • UK’s clinical research recovering slower than Euro peers, says ABPI

    The pandemic had a negative effect on clinical research across all countries, but the UK seems to be taking longer than others to recover, according to a report from the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI). The industry body maintains however that the UK can bounce back strongly if it adopts the innovative approaches […]

  • EU ‘negotiating with Valneva’ over COVID-19 vaccine contract

    The European Commission is reportedly in advanced discussions with French biotech Valneva about picking up the contract to supply COVID-19 vaccines that was terminated by the UK government this week. A French government source told Reuters that the EU is considering using the VLA2001 vaccine as part of its booster campaign plans, along with a […]

  • UK poised to announce booster COVID jabs for over-50s

    The UK government is due to announce a large-scale booster vaccine campaign against COVID-19 for all adults aged 50 and over later today, adding to its plan for third doses for people with weakened immune systems. The plan will see millions of doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech mRNA vaccine administered across the autumn and winter to […]

  • Valneva slumps as UK dumps €1.4bn order for COVID-19 jab

    The UK has terminated its order for up to 190 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine developed by French biotech company Valneva, accusing it of breaching their supply agreement. Valneva said it “strenuously denies” that allegation, but added that the €1.4 billion ($1.65 billion) contract does provide the UK government with the right to exit […]

  • UK pledges £5.4bn to NHS to ease COVID-19 treatment backlog

    NHS England will get an extra £5.4 billion ($7.5 billion) in funding over the next six months to respond to COVID-19 and address a backlog in care caused by the pandemic, according to the UK government. The total includes £1 billion to get delivery of routine surgeries and treatments to patients delayed by COVID-19 back […]

  • UK real-world study finds COVID-19 jab protection wanes

    A study has found evidence that protection from the AstraZeneca and Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines starts fall off after a few months, but a UK government advisor says there’s no need to rush into a large-scale booster campaign. The results of the ZOE COVID study found that initial protection against infection a month after the second […]

  • MHRA clears Moderna COVID vaccine for 12 to 17 year olds

    The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine has become the second jab to be authorised for use in England, Scotland and Wales in children aged 12 to 17 after getting the nod from the Medicines and healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). It joins the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine in being an option for that age group, having been approved in […]

  • UK adults asked to record coughs to improve COVID detection

    Researchers in the UK are asking adults who have taken a COVID-19 test in the last 72 hours to record themselves coughing, breathing and speaking to help develop new ways to detect infection. The aim is to develop algorithms that could be used to detect COVID-19 remotely – for example before a PCR or lateral […]

  • UK cues up more Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines as price row looms

    The UK government has started ordering COVID-19 vaccines for a 2022 booster campaign, including a 32 million-dose order for the Pfizer/BioNTech shot, even before third doses for 2021 have been given the go-ahead. A report in The Times claims that the government is paying £22 a dose – up from an earlier price of £18 […]

  • AZ gets European approvals for Forxiga in chronic kidney disease

    AstraZeneca’s Forxiga has become the first SGLT2 inhibitor to be approved in Europe for use in people with chronic kidney disease, extending its lead over rival drugs in the class. The European Commission has cleared Forxiga (dapagliflozin) for CKD in adults with or without diabetes, and the drug becomes the first new drug treatment for […]

  • Pfizer, Flynn in the firing line again over UK epilepsy drug pricing

    The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has resurrected a complaint against Pfizer and Flynn Pharma, claiming the two companies charged the NHS excessive prices for a widely-used epilepsy therapy. In a provisional judgment, the CMA has concluded that Pfizer and Flynn abused a dominant position to overcharge the NHS for phenytoin sodium capsules, causing […]

  • UK extends COVID vaccination to 16 and 17-year-olds

    The UK government has confirmed that the national COVID-19 vaccination campaign will be extended to include 16 and 17-year-old children, to tackle an increase in spread of the virus in younger age groups. The moves comes on the back of new advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccine and Immunisation (JCVI), which has concluded that […]

  • UK fines Advanz £100m for raising thyroid drug price tenfold

    The UK has levied another big fine for anticompetitive activity in the pharma market in a fortnight, with Advanz Pharma and former owners on the hook for more than £100 million ($140 million) after increasing the price of a thyroid disease drug by 1,110% over an eight-year period. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said […]

  • UK’s Peppy raises £6.6m for workplace digital health platform

    A £6.6 million ($9.2 million) cash injection for UK digital health company Peppy will be used to scale up its business-to-business platform and expand its reach and range of services. The Series A financing, led by Felix Capital, will help the company reach more organisations and people in the UK, and also allow it to […]

  • UK funds ‘long COVID’ research drive as restrictions ease

    The UK government has provided almost £20 million ($27 million) in funding for 15 research projects aiming to look into the causes of long COVID, improve diagnosis and find new treatments for the condition. Long COVID is the term used to described people who still suffer from fatigue and other symptoms like breathlessness and muscle […]

  • UK funds ‘long COVID’ research drive as restrictions ease

    The UK government has provided almost £20 million ($27 million) in funding for 15 research projects aiming to look into the causes of long COVID, improve diagnosis and find new treatments for the condition. Long COVID is the term used to described people who still suffer from fatigue and other symptoms like breathlessness and muscle […]

  • GSK unveils plan for life sciences cluster at Stevenage campus

    GlaxoSmithKline wants to sell more than a third of the space at its R&D campus in Stevenage, UK, to a new bioscience cluster that it says could become one of the largest in Europe. The drugmaker says it is seeking a development partner for the project, and hopes to unlock £400 million ($553 million) in […]

  • Merck’s targeted lung cancer drug tepotinib wins early access in UK

    The UK drugs regulator has backed Merck KGaA’s MET inhibitor for the treatment of some patients with non-small cell lung cancer under the early access to medicines scheme (EAMS). The EAMS – first introduced in 2014 – provides a route for drugmakers to provide earlier availability of promising new unlicensed medicines to patients with few […]

  • UK fines drugmakers record £260m for price gouging NHS

    The UK’s competition authority has issued its largest ever fine of more than £260 million ($360 million) to several pharma companies accused of colluding to hike the price of medicines delivered to the NHS. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) took the action against Auden Mckenzie and Actavis UK – now known as Accord-UK – […]

  • Big tobacco’s PMI makes another pharma foray with Vectura deal

    Tobacco giant Philip Morris International (PMI) has doubled down on its move into the pharmaceutical sector, following up its recent acquisition of Fertin Pharma with a deal to buy Vectura for around £1 billion ($1.38 billion). PMI is paying 150 pence per share for Vectura, trumping a 139 per share offer from private equity firm […]

  • Dementia, cancer headline UK’s 10-year plan for life sciences sector

    The UK’s long-awaited Life Sciences Vision strategy has been published, setting out the government’s stall as it tries to deliver on its promise to keep the country at the forefront of the sector. The document published today lays out seven healthcare “missions” for the UK’s industry as it tries to double down on the success […]

  • UK biotech ‘booming’ as sector rakes in £1.6bn in Q2 financing

    The UK’s biotechnology sector is going through a purple patch, attracting almost £1.6 billion ($2.2 billion) in financing in the three months to end-May – which is a record for the industry. The new figures – from the BioIndustry Association and Clarivate – were dominated by more than £1 billion in venture capital funding for […]

  • UK body recommends COVID booster campaign in autumn

    The UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has recommended that the NHS should start a COVID-19 booster shot programme in September, to run alongside the annual flu vaccine drive.  The programme should run in two stages, initially targeting elderly and vulnerable people and frontline health and social care workers like the initial vaccination […]

  • UK body recommends COVID booster campaign in autumn

    The UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has recommended that the NHS should start a COVID-19 booster shot programme in September, to run alongside the annual flu vaccine drive.  The programme should run in two stages, initially targeting elderly and vulnerable people and frontline health and social care workers like the initial vaccination […]

  • UK is talking to AstraZeneca about beta variant COVID jab

    The UK government is talking to AstraZeneca about ordering additional doses of its COVID-19 vaccine that will target the beta variant of SARS-CoV-2 virus first identified in South Africa, according to Health Secretary Matt Hancock. The AZ/Oxford University vaccine and other shots from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna are known to have less efficacy against the beta […]

  • Janssen COVID jab cleared in UK as fears of third wave mount

    With concern already growing about a possible third wave of COVID-19 infections, the UK has cleared the use of a fourth vaccine from Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen division. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) gave a green light to the single-dose Ad26.COV2.S vaccine in people aged 18 and over by referencing the decision […]

  • Vectura agrees $1.4bn takeover by private equity group Carlyle

    Vectura has agreed to a £1.55 per share takeover by US private investment company Carlyle, which values the UK drug delivery specialist at £958 million ($1.4 billion).  The acquisition of one of the UK’s biggest biotech companies comes as Vectura is in the midst of a business restructuring that has seen it pivot away from […]

  • UK competition watchdog probes AstraZeneca, Alexion merger

    The antitrust authority in the UK has launched an investigation into the proposed $39 billion takeover of US firm Alexion by AstraZeneca. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is starting the first phase of the probe today, and said it should wrap it up by 21 July, deciding at that point whether to start a […]

  • New Cell & Gene Therapy Collective seeks to boost UK adoption

    The UK has been a global leader in introducing cell and gene therapies that can potentially transform the lives of patients with debilitating diseases – but there are still many barriers to wider adoption. These challenges often arise because these therapies go through the same value assessment processes as less complex medicines, and the infrastructure […]

  • UK says Pfizer, AZ COVID-19 vaccines work against Indian variant

    People who have received two doses of the AstraZeneca or Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines have good protection against the Indian variant of SARS-CoV-2 , according to new UK data. The Pfizer/BioNTech shot provided 88% protection against the B.1.617.2 variant first identified in India and currently gaining ground across the UK and other countries around the world, […]

  • UK booster trial will test value of third COVID jab dose

    All seven COVID-19 vaccines ordered by the UK government will be tested in a new trial that will see whether they can be used as a third booster dose to protect against new variants.  The Cov-Boost trial is thought to be the first in the world to try to generate data on the value of […]

  • UK highlights life sciences’ key role in post-COVID recovery

    The UK government used the Queen’s Speech to set out its ambition to make the country a leader in life sciences, garnering a warm response from industry groups.  The speech – an opportunity for Boris Johnson’s government to set out its plans for the year ahead after consolidating its position in last week’s local elections […]

  • UK ‘planning to widen AstraZeneca COVID jab restrictions’

    Reports are emerging that the UK may join other countries in imposing restrictions on the use of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine in younger people, after a fresh look at the risks and benefits of the shot.  The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said last month that it is preferable for adults aged under 30 […]

  • New UK biotech Inspira uncloaks with deal to develop inhaled COVID therapy

    UK biotech Inspira Pharmaceuticals has emerged from stealth mode with a deal with Vectura to develop an inhaled therapy for COVID-19 that could be ready for human testing within 12 months.  The start-up is focusing on processed and purified extracts from an undisclosed plant source that have been shown in lab studies to kill the […]

  • Creating a global life sciences superpower from the lessons of COVID

    It’s time to take what the UK has learnt about the “Holy Trinity” of government, academia, and industry and apply it to creating a “life sciences superpower”, says health secretary Matt Hancock. The UK’s life sciences industry has “achieved in months what usually takes years” – and in doing so has built a solid foundation […]

  • Apple, Google block NHS contact tracing app update on privacy grounds

    A scheduled update to the NHS COVID-19 app has been blocked because it allows location tracking – something prohibited by Apple and Google, which developed some of the code it uses.  The new version of the app used in England and Wales was due to become available today to coincide with the relaxation of lockdown […]

  • Cancer Research UK spinout Achilles raises $175.5m in IPO

    UK biotech Achilles Therapeutics has completed its initial public offering (IPO) in the US, raising $175.5 million that will be used to take its personalised T cell therapy for lung and skin cancers through proof-of-concept trials. The new funding will also be used to advance two more T cell programmes for head and neck and […]

  • Could Moderna shot save UK’s under-50s COVID vaccination push?

    People in the UK will start receiving doses of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine in around two weeks’ time, according to vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi. The roll-out of the third coronavirus shot will come as the UK exits its second lockdown round, and in time to offset an anticipated dip in supply of the Oxford University/AstraZeneca AZD1222 […]

  • UK government launches new office to “level up” nation’s health

    The government has continued its shake-up of UK health authorities with the creation of the Office of Health Promotion (OHP), which will focus on issues like obesity, mental and sexual health, and promoting physical activity.  The OHP will take over the health improvement remit currently the responsibility of Public Health England (PHE), and will “lead […]

  • NICE says no to AZ’s Lynparza for prostate cancer

    NHS patients in England will not be able to get access to AstraZeneca’s PARP inhibitor Lynparza if they have BRCA-positive advance prostate cancer, according to draft guidance from NICE. The cost-effectiveness agency is assessing use of Lynparza (olaparib) in patients with tumours that carry BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations who have previously been treated with the […]

  • Roche introduces 15-minute nasal COVID test in UK

    Roche Diagnostics has launched a 15-minute nasal antigen test for COVID-19 in the UK, and says it has millions of the kits available straight away to help the country recover from the pandemic.   The speedy test can turn around results within 15 minutes, without the need for processing swabs in a lab, and only […]

  • Tribunal maintains Lexon’s £1.2m fine for breaking competition law

    Pharmaceutical wholesaler Lexon (UK) has lost its appeal against a £1.2 million fine in a case that accused it of exchanging commercially sensitive information about prices for nortriptyline tablets.  Lexon had appealed against a ruling by the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) that it had exchanged information with King Pharmaceuticals and Alissa Healthcare Research […]

  • MHRA approves Seagen’s oral HER2 drug Tukysa

    The UK drugs regulator has approved Seagen’s Tukysa as a third-line treatment for HER2-positive breast cancer, shortly after it was given a green light by the European Commission.  Tukysa (tucatinib) – an orally-active HER2 inhibitor – can be used in combination with anti-HER2 antibody trastuzumab and chemotherapy capecitabine in patients treated with two prior anti-HER2 […]

  • UK will start first COVID-19 challenge study “within a month”

    Sometime within the next few weeks, young and healthy volunteers will be deliberately exposed to the COVID-19 coronavirus in the UK in what looks set to be the first study of its type worldwide.  The human challenge study has just secured ethics committee approval and will recruit up to 90 volunteers aged 18-30 years, according […]

  • Labour accuses government of cronyism in COVID-19 contracts

    The UK government’s massive spending on the coronavirus pandemic response has been “rife with conflicts of interest”, says the opposition Labour Party, and an independent watchdog should be set up to oversee procurement contracts. That was the message delivered by shadow Cabinet Office minister Rachel Reeves in a speech yesterday which claimed almost £2 billion […]

  • UK targets COVID-19 variants with new order for CureVac jab

    The UK has agreed a 50 million-dose order for a COVID-19 vaccine with German biotech CureVac to support development of a shot that specifically targets emerging variants of the virus. The agreement will see the UK work with CureVac develop “new varieties of vaccines based on messenger RNA technology to be developed quickly against new […]

  • UK biotech investment at record levels amid COVID-19

    New figures have confirmed that the UK’s biotech sector received a massive boost from the COVID-19 pandemic last year, with investment levels soaring to £2.8 billion ($3.8 billion) from a level of £1.3 billion in 2019. That makes 2020 a new record year for the sector, exceeding the previous investment high of £2.2 billion in […]

  • Regeneron’s REGEN-COV Antibody Cocktail Confirms its Effectiveness Against UK and South Africa SARS-CoV-2 Variants

    Shots: REGEN-COV neutralizes the SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7 variants, identified in the UK & SA. The data was included in a bioRxiv paper and submitted for peer-reviewed publication on the changing resistance of SARS-CoV-2 variants to Ab neutralization REGEN-COV retained its neutralizing capability against the B.1.1.7 variant. The Ab cocktails also retained its potency against the B.1.351 […]

  • NICE reverses stance on Celgene’s Revlimid for myeloma maintenance

    NHS patients in England with newly-diagnosed multiple myeloma can be treated with Celgene’s Revlimid as maintenance therapy after a stem cell transplant, after new guidance from NICE. The cost-effectiveness agency has backed interim funding for Revlimid (lenalidomide) in this setting via the Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF), which provides temporary reimbursement for medicines until further data […]

  • UK is first European country to see COVID-19 deaths pass 100,000

    More than 100,000 people have died within 28 days of a positive COVID-19 test in the UK, the first European country to meet that grim milestone. The UK is only the fifth country after the US, Brazil, India and Mexico to pass that threshold, after a surge in cases following the holiday period around the […]

  • Nearly half of UK young people buy meds after consulting “Dr Google”

    It’s evident that relying on Google for a health diagnosis isn’t a good idea, but it seems a majority of UK people still do – and even buy medicines based on what they find. A new UK survey finds that overall 59% of 1,000 respondents Google their health symptom before consulting a doctor, with 16% […]

  • IL-6 drugs do work in COVID-19, says UK, as it plans NHS use

    New data means that IL-6 drugs from Roche and Sanofi that had been all-but written off as coronavirus therapies will now be offered routinely to COVID-19  patients in intensive care in the UK. The renaissance of the two therapies comes on the back of the REMAP-CAP trial, which found that the IL-6 inhibitors RoActemra (tocilizumab) […]

  • Health Canada Accelerates the Review for AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 Vaccine

    Shots: Health Canada expedite the review of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine after the vaccine received the UK’s MHRA approval for emergency use Following an agreement to supply 20M of doses for the Government of Canada, AstraZeneca seek out Health Canada’s clearance in Oct’2020, leading to data submission done on a rolling basis for accelerating the review […]

  • UK parliament backs EU trade deal, as industry sifts through detail

    The post-Brexit trade deal agreed on Christmas Eve has been overwhelmingly backed by the UK parliament, providing some degree of stability – but also plenty of disruption – for the coming months and years. The UK is leaving the EU’s single market and customs union, but the deal means tariffs on goods won’t be imposed […]

  • AstraZeneca’s AZD1222 Receives MHRA’s Emergency Supply Authorization in the UK

    Shots: The MHRA has provided authorization for an emergency supply of AZD1222, for the active immunization of individuals aged ≥18yrs. The approval recommends 2 doses administered with an interval of between 4 & 12wks The authorization is based on independent advice from its CHM following a rolling review of trial data that included an interim […]

  • VC fund dedicated to psychedelic meds launches in UK

    In the last few years, biopharma companies focusing on psychedelic medicines have been springing up like mushrooms – magic or otherwise – and venture capital money is starting to follow. Today sees the launch of the first investment fund in the UK devoted to psychedelic healthcare, with plans to invest in “revolutionary mind-altering medicines to […]

  • An introduction to the new NIHR National Patient Recruitment Centres

    A new network of patient recruitment centres is set to shape the future of commercial clinical trials in the UK by offering new approaches to conduct late-phase, large-scale research projects. In a recent pharmaphorum webinar leaders from the NIHR’s five National Patient Recruitment Centres (NPRCs) outlined how they could bring cutting-edge therapies to greater numbers […]

  • Pfizer & BioNTech Receives MHRA’s EUA for BNT162b2 Against COVID-19

    Shots: Pfizer & BioNTech reports that the MHRA in the UK has granted a temporary authorization for the EU for BNT162b2 against COVID-19. The distribution of vaccine will be prioritized according to the populations identified in guidance from the JCVI The MHRA’s decision is based on a rolling submission, including data from the P-III study, […]

  • Social media erupts as anti-vaxxers respond to COVID-19 vaccine approval

    In the midst of the jubilation about the UK’s emergency approval of Pfizer/BioNTech’s COVID-19 shot in the UK came the depressingly inevitable round of anti-vaccine social media activity and lobbying. The green light for BNT162b was swiftly followed by posts on Twitter likening the vaccine to thalidomide – the drug that notoriously resulted in thousands […]

  • UK groups get £12m funding for COVID-19 monitoring software

    Researchers at the Wellcome Sanger Institute in the UK are working on software to monitor the genome of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus in the hope of spotting changes that could affect the fight against COVID-19. Backed by £12.2 million in UK government funding, Wellcome Sanger and the COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK) Consortium intend to develop a real-time […]

  • Controversial US data firm Palantir could manage UK’s ailing Test and Trace scheme

    US data analysis company Palantir Technologies could be drafted in to manage the UK government’s troubled COVID-19 Test and Trace programme, according to press reports. Palantir has been linked with the project for several weeks and the Financial Times is the latest to suggest that the company could get involved with the troubled project. Palantir […]

  • Ipsen’s UK MD on adapting business to COVID-19

    Since entering the pharmaceutical industry as a graduate trainee in the late 1990s, Asad Mohsin Ali’s career has taken him across the business from Novartis, MSD and Tesaro, before joining global biopharma Ipsen. He tells us how the company has responded to COVID and how he’d like to see the UK industry grow in the […]

  • What HCPs Think about schools reopening

    In our latest article in the What HCPs Think series, CREATION.co’s Jamie Doggett analyses the social media activity of doctors to determine their views on how schools should operate during COVID-19. When and how schools should return was a big question for the UK during summer, and one that is continuing to go on. A […]

  • NICE changes its mind on Novartis’ progressive MS drug Mayzent

    UK cost-effectiveness agency NICE has backed Novartis’ Mayzent for secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (SPMS), after turning it down earlier this year in draft guidance. The change of heart means Mayzent (siponimod) becomes the first oral disease-modifying therapy to be recommended for NHS use in SPMS patients with active disease, defined as relapses or evidence of […]

  • NHS’ telemedicine ambitions approach a pivotal point

    The UK government has said it is vital to adopt telemedicine across the NHS in response to COVID-19 – but is the health service ready to fully embrace this digital tech? Dom Tyer investigates. The rapid digitalisation of life during COVID-19’s acute phase has had a huge impact on healthcare delivery during the pandemic, part […]

  • UK’s second go at a contact tracing app heads for pilot study

    After ditching its home-grown attempt at a coronavirus contact-tracing app for smartphones, the UK is ready to start pilot trials of a second version based on a platform developed by Apple and Google. The new NHS Test and Trace app is intended to be used as an add-on to the controversial national and local contact-tracing […]

  • Government warned over test and trace as UK schools prep to reopen

    The current level of test and trace in the UK is inadequate to prevent a sharp increase in coronavirus infections when schools reopen in September and there is further relaxation of social distancing rules, according to scientists. A second wave of COVID-19 could be avoided if enough people are tested and traced, according to the […]

  • How does HTA for orphan drugs differ across europe?

    New research looks at the factors that speed up and slow down HTA appraisals for rare disease medicines across Europe. Rare diseases drugs have always faced challenges when it comes to HTA approvals, even as governments bring in more regulatory policies that make their path through assessment easier. Several factors make it difficult for HTA […]

  • UK places order for 60m doses of Sanofi/GSK’s COVID-19 vaccine

    The UK government has signed its fourth coronavirus vaccine deal, snapping up 60 million doses of an experimental shot being developed by Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline. The order has come in even before the vaccine has started clinical development, with a phase 1/2 trial not due to get underway until September. Sanofi is providing the vaccine […]

  • UK pharma resilient in 2Q, despite pandemic fallout

    UK manufacturing exports fell sharply during the second quarter as the COVID-19 pandemic gathered pace, but pharma and healthcare products were much less affected, says a Lloyds Bank report. The latest quarterly UK International Trade Index reveals that the Chemicals and Plastics sector – which covers pharma and healthcare – was particularly resilient in the […]

  • MSD’s David Peacock on moving UK healthcare forward

    David Peacock has worked across the world for MSD and other companies, and has now taken the helm of MSD’s UK & Ireland operations. In the latest article in our UK Leaders series, he tells us about the opportunities and challenges he is excited to take on in the region. Peacock has had a strikingly […]

  • Health care battle: US vs. England

    A new study by Choi et al. (2020) compares the health of individuals aged 55-64 in the US compared to England. They use data from Health and Retirement Study (HRS)–in the US–and the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA) for 2008-2016. Health is measured across 16 outcomes: 5 self-assessed outcomes, 3 directly measured outcomes, and […]

  • Opportunities and Obstacles for Online Pharmacies in the UK

    More and more businesses are transitioning to a digital platform, using the power of technology to improve the products and services offered and delivered to consumers. Most industries impacted most prevalently by the tech boom have included retail businesses, but the healthcare sector is beginning its catch-up. The most recent shift toward a more digitally […]