What we're reading, August 23, 2016: Republicans in Congress indicate they may be willing to fix the Affordable Care Act instead of repeal it once President Obama is out of office; an Alzheimer's drug receives fast-track designation from the FDA; and Pfizer to acquire Medivation.
As President Barack Obama prepares to leave the White House, Republicans are changing their tune regarding the Affordable Care Act. After years of insisting they want to repeal and replace the president’s healthcare law, Republicans may be willing to work with a new president to tweak Obamacare, reported Bloomberg. Part of the reason Republicans are changing their attitude is because with many large insurers withdrawing from the insurance exchanges, areas represented by Republicans stand to be the most affected by a potential loss of coverage.
An Alzheimer’s drug has received fast-track designation from the FDA. According to The Wall Street Journal, the drug, developed by AstraZeneca and Eli Lilly & Co, prevents the formation of amyloid, which is thought to cause Alzheimer’s disease through a build up in the brain. The drug will progress to the final stage of testing in patients with early-stage Alzheimer’s and may also start testing in patients with mild Alzheimer’s. The drug, AZD3293, is part of a new class of Alzheimer’s drugs called BACE inhibitors.
Pfizer will acquire Medivation, which has a blockbuster cancer drug in the pipeline, for $14 billion. Medivation’s prostate cancer drug Xtandi is expected to be one of the top 10 cancer drugs in 2021, according to The Washington Post. Medivation is also working on an experimental breast cancer drug and an immuno-oncology drug. Pfizer’s previous deal with Allergan collapsed earlier this year when the Treasury Department stepped in to get rid of many of the tax benefits of the deal.