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Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

Out Of The Morass

September 18, 2013 4:19 pm | by Mike Rainone, Co-Founder, PCDworks | Blogs | Comments

We are constantly bombarded by the “fact” that we are overspending on social programs, which jeopardizes the wonderful future that our great grandchildren so richly deserve. Let’s get this straight, no one deserves anything. Every generation must earn its place.

II-VI Buys Oclaro's Semiconductor Laser Business

September 12, 2013 10:08 am | News | Comments

Laser and optics manufacturer II-VI Inc. has acquired the semiconductor laser business of Oclaro Inc. for $92 million. Oclaro's shares jumped 30 percent to $1.38 before the opening bell Thursday. II-VI is acquiring semiconductor laser technology used in laser system products for material processing, medical, consumer and fiber optic communications.

Robohand Uses 3D Printing To Replace Lost Digits

September 9, 2013 12:06 pm | by Carley Petesch, Associated Press | News | Comments

The device looks like a robot's hand in a science fiction movie, costs about $500 to make and can be reproduced using plans on the Internet and a 3D printer.Van As is now on a mission to spread the mechanism to people without fingers or hands all over the world.

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Bill Gates, 5 Scientists Win Lasker Medical Prizes

September 9, 2013 10:13 am | by Malcolm Ritter, AP Science Writer | News | Comments

The philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates, as well as five researchers, have won prestigious Lasker Awards for their contributions to medicine. The Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation announced the recipients of the $250,000 prizes on Monday. The Gateses were honored for their work on health problems around the world.

Some Flu Vaccines Promise A Little More Protection

September 3, 2013 7:53 am | by Lauran Neergaard, AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

For the first time, certain vaccines will guard against four strains of flu rather than the usual three. Called quadrivalent vaccines, these brands may prove more popular for children than their parents. That's because kids tend to catch the newly added strain more often.

J&J Tries New Cap To Curb Fatal Tylenol Overdoses

August 29, 2013 1:58 pm | by Matthew Perrone, AP Health Writer | News | Comments

Johnson & Johnson says the warning will appear on the cap of each new bottle of Extra Strength Tylenol sold in the U.S. in October and on most other Tylenol bottles in coming months. The warning will make it explicitly clear that the over-the-counter drug contains acetaminophen, a pain-relieving ingredient that's the nation's leading cause of sudden liver failure.

Rehab Rex: Non-Invasive Technology Helps Patients 'Walk'

August 29, 2013 9:57 am | by Shawn Lindsey, University of Houston | News | Comments

UH researcher Jose Luis Contreras-Vidal, professor of electrical and computer engineering, is working on perfecting a non-invasive brain-machine interface (BMI) technology that a patient can use to operate an advanced robotics system such as the exoskeleton. The BMI works by interpreting brain waves that allow patients to control, with their thoughts, robotic legs and below-elbow amputees to control neuroprosthetic limbs.

FDA Grants Priority Review To Pharmacyclics Cancer Drug

August 29, 2013 9:24 am | News | Comments

Pharmacyclics is getting a priority review of its blood cancer treatment by federal regulators. A priority review shortens a drug evaluation by the Food and Drug Administration from 10 months to six. The acceptance of the application triggers a $75 million milestone payment to Pharmacyclics from Johnson & Johnson's Janssen unit.

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Endo Will Buy Generic Drug Maker Boca For $225M

August 28, 2013 2:24 pm | News | Comments

Endo Health Solutions said Wednesday it will buy Boca Pharmacal for $225 million in a deal that expands its generic drug business. Boca Pharmacal says it makes "niche" generic drugs. Endo said privately-held Boca focuses on products that require special handling or administration.

Akorn To Buy Hi-Tech Pharmacal For $640M

August 27, 2013 11:05 am | News | Comments

Akorn Inc. plans to pay $640 million in cash to buy fellow generic drugmaker Hi-Tech Pharmacal Co. Inc. in a deal that it expects will help boost its adjusted earnings immediately. Lake Forest, Ill.-based Akorn said that it will pay $43.50 for each share of Amityville, N.Y.-based Hi-Tech. That represents a premium of more than 23 percent over Hi-Tech's closing price Monday of $35.21.

Assembly Approves Bill On 'Biosimilar' Medicines

August 27, 2013 9:30 am | by Laura Olson, Associated Press | News | Comments

California pharmacists would be allowed to dispense substitute medications that are biologically similar to brand-name treatments under a bill that cleared the state Assembly on Monday. Biological medicines, which are created from living cells rather than by mixing chemicals, have been used to treat cancer and immune-system disorders.

Amgen Buying Cancer Drug Maker Onyx For $10.4B

August 26, 2013 9:35 am | News | Comments

Biotech drugmaker Amgen will buy cancer drug maker Onyx Pharmaceuticals for about $10.4 billion in cash in a deal that will add several cancer drugs to Amgen's stable and add to its pipeline of new drugs. Amgen Inc. said Sunday it will acquire Onyx for $125 per share, and it expects to complete the deal at the beginning of the fourth quarter. 

Settlement Reached In W.Va. Surgical Mesh Case

August 22, 2013 7:44 am | News | Comments

Thousands of surgical mesh lawsuits have been filed nationwide. Only one other has gone to trial. Last week, a federal jury awarded a Georgia woman $2 million in her lawsuit against C.R. Bard. The lawsuits accuse the pelvic repair products' manufacturers of inadequate testing, failing to disclose potential risks and fraudulently promoting the mesh as a safe medical device.

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C.R. Bard To Acquire Medafor For $200M

August 19, 2013 10:32 am | News | Comments

Medafor makes Arista MPH Hemostat, a hemostatic agent that helps stop bleeding. C.R. Bard said Monday that the market for surgical hemostats is worth more than $1.4 billion. It expects the acquisition to add about 1 percent to overall revenue growth in 2014.

St. Jude Plans To Spend Up To $331M On Endosense

August 19, 2013 9:11 am | News | Comments

St. Jude Medical Inc. plans to pay up to $331 million to buy the Swiss maker of a catheter that can tell doctors whether the correct amount of force is being applied to the heart wall during a procedure to fix a form of irregular heartbeat.   

New Tool Peeks Into Brain To Measure Consciousness

August 15, 2013 11:16 am | by Lauran Neergaard, AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

When people have a brain injury so severe that they can't squeeze a loved one's hand or otherwise respond, there are few good ways to tell if they have any lingering awareness or are in a vegetative state. Now researchers have created a tool to peek inside the brain and measure varying levels of consciousness.

Medtronic Completes $200M Deal For Cardiocom

August 12, 2013 12:23 pm | News | Comments

Medtronic Inc. said Monday that it closed its $200 million acquisition of Cardiocom, which develops and provides services that help manage chronic diseases. The Minneapolis-based medical device maker said it doesn't expect the deal to affect its fiscal year 2014 profit.

Judge Orders Zimmer To Pay Stryker $228M

August 9, 2013 7:42 am | News | Comments

The jury had awarded Stryker $70 million and Jonker tripled that amount to $210 million because Zimmer willfully infringed on three patents held by Stryker. Jonker also said Stryker is entitled to $7.2 million in additional damages, $11.7 million in interest and ordered Zimmer to pay Stryker's attorney's fees.

Woman's 'Lego Leg' Video A Hit, Inspires Others

August 8, 2013 12:11 pm | by Jim Salter, Associated Press | News | Comments

As a child, Christina Stephens filled her parents' basement with Lego castles and pirate ships. When she put her Lego-building skills to work last month making a prosthetic leg out of the children's toy, she became an Internet sensation.     

Standards Boost Business

August 8, 2013 9:40 am | by S. Joe Bhatia, President & CEO, American National Standards Institute | Blogs | Comments

Standards have the power to turbo-charge innovation and fuel business growth. From design and manufacturing to distribution and marketing, all products and services are affected at some point by standardization. But standards and conformance also impact the strength of the American workforce.

Dynasplint Systems Lays Off 500 Workers

August 8, 2013 7:49 am | News | Comments

Founder George Hepburn says he owed BB&T Bank $10 million on a line of credit. He told employees in a letter that he had to temporarily lay off about 70 percent of the workforce after the bank used $1 million he had earmarked for payroll to pay down his debt.

Scientists Plan Controversial Lab-Made Bird Flu

August 7, 2013 2:14 pm | by Lauran Neergaard, AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

Since it broke out in China in March, the bird flu strain has infected more than 130 people and killed 43. Researchers say that genetically engineering this virus in the lab could help track whether it's changing in the wild to become a bigger threat. 

Chinese Researcher Sentenced In Research Drug Case

August 6, 2013 1:57 pm | by Dinesh Ramde, Associated Press | News | Comments

A Chinese researcher was sentenced Tuesday to time served plus two years of probation on charges stemming from the theft of a research drug from a Wisconsin medical school. Hua Jun Zhao, 41, had pleaded guilty in July to a reduced charge of illegally downloading research data from the Medical College of Wisconsin, where he worked as a researcher.

Chinese Court Rules Against J&J In Monopoly Suit

August 5, 2013 8:12 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

The ruling by a Shanghai court expands use of the vaguely worded, 5-year-old anti-monopoly law and raises the possibility of action against other foreign companies. It comes amid Chinese investigations of possible bribery, price-fixing and other misconduct by global suppliers of milk, pharmaceuticals and other products.

FDA Warns Of Massive Diabetes Test Strip Recall

August 1, 2013 7:41 am | News | Comments

The FDA said Wednesday that the strips are contaminated with a chemical used in the manufacturing process, which interferes with readings. FDA regulators are working with the company to investigate the problem and make sure it is corrected.    

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