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sleep apnea, said it is forming a new strategic business unit, called ResMed Ventures and Initiatives, to focus on heart disease, diabetes, and other diseases related to sleep-disordered breathing. The move is part of a sweeping reorganization at the company.
—ResMed also launched a free iPhone app that’s designed to help people determine if they suffer from a sleep disorder. The app asks a series of questions about sleeping habits, and also can be set to record a person’s snoring pattern while they sleep.
—I talked with Stephen Bloch, who is a general partner in the Westport, CT, office of Canaan Partners, about Shire’s $750 million acquisition of San Diego’s Advanced BioHealing (ABH). Bloch and Canaan stepped in to lead what became a $40 million investment to restart ABH. Now Shire is reported to be in buyout talks with Lexington, MA-based Cubist Pharmaceuticals, which is best known for an antibiotic used to treat drug-resistant skin infections.
—In his BioBeat column, Luke talked with Jim Posada of Seattle-based Resolve Therapeutics about a new business model for venture-backed biotechs. Posada has set up Resolve as a limited liability corporation to distribute returns to investors by eventually signing a licensing deal with a Big Pharma company.
—The FDA cleared Cambridge, MA-based Vertex, which has operations in San Diego, to begin marketing telaprevir (Incivek) as a new treatment for patients in the U.S. with hepatitis C. The new drug is now approved as a first-round treatment for patients diagnosed with the liver-damaging virus.
—An Ernst & Young study of first-quarter IPO filings showed that two San Diego life sciences companies, Ambit Biosciences and IASO Pharma, are preparing to go public. The accounting firm said 125 companies were ready to go public at the end of March, a 56 percent increase over the 80 companies that were registered for IPOs at the end of the first quarter of 2010.