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Sat., April 23, 2011, midnight

Patient died taking Pfizer arthritis drug

NEW YORK – Pfizer Inc. confirmed that one patient who was taking its drug candidate tofacitinib, a pill designed to treat rheumatoid arthritis, died during a recent clinical trial and said the death was connected to the drug.

The world’s largest drugmaker said the patient died of respiratory failure. Three other patients who were treated with tofacitinib during the study died as well, but those deaths were not determined to be drug-related. Two of those deaths occurred several weeks after the patients stopped taking tofacitinib.

More than 1,000 patients have taken tofacitinib during clinical trials, and Pfizer said late Thursday that the overall death rate for patients in those studies is similar to what has been observed in other biologic treatments for rheumatoid arthritis.

Associated Press

Treasury making profit on assets

WASHINGTON – The Treasury Department says that an investment program set up during the financial crisis to buy toxic assets from banks is showing a $1.7 billion gain.

The department has committed $22.1 billion in taxpayer funds to the Public-Private Investment Program, created in March 2009. That money has been used to set up funds that have invested in mortgage-backed securities and other financial assets. The goal is to take those assets off the books of large banks that were facing huge losses from bad real estate investments during the housing bubble.

Associated Press

Judge OKs bonuses for Borders execs

NEW YORK – A lawyer for bookseller Borders Group Inc. says a judge has approved paying executives up to $6.6 million in bonuses as the company works to reorganize under bankruptcy court protection.

The Office of the U.S. Trustee objected to an earlier request to pay about $8 million in bonuses.

Associated Press

Samsung files Apple countersuits

SEOUL, South Korea – South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co. said it is suing Apple Inc. for patent rights violations, only days after Apple sued Samsung for the same reason.

Samsung is accusing Apple of violating its rights to 10 smartphone and computer patents. The company filed lawsuits Thursday in Seoul, Tokyo and Mannheim, Germany.

Associated Press


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