February 2012



Merck KGaA talks restructuring – Abbott in $1.3bn autoimmune deal – And focus on rare diseases in Europe and UK (more…)

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I think we’ve all had a bellyful of this week’s compound. In fact, we’d be in trouble if we hadn’t. Brian Clegg digests hydrochloric acid in this week’s Chemistry in its element podcast.

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26 February 2012: Have something to say about an article you’ve read on Chemistry World this week? Leave your comments below…

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Novartis pays $440m for HCV candidate – BASF calls time on lead chromate – And thumbs up for obesity drug (more…)

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US biotech – and Sanofi subsidiary – Genzyme has confirmed plans to close its R&D site in Cambridge, UK, by the end of 2012 putting 60 jobs under threat. The firm started the consultation process back in November 2011, when it said it was looking to consolidate its R&D structure geographically at four research hubs: one in Germany, one in France, one in Boston, US, and one somewhere in Asia. Sanofi says that it ‘remains committed to keeping its strategic presence in the UK’. It adds that it is ‘looking at options to minimise the number of job losses, either through transfer of roles within the Sanofi group or through assisting impacted employees in finding alternative employment’. The two other UK sites – a manufacturing site in Haverhill and an R&D site in Oxford – will remain.

French drug maker Sanofi bought Genzyme in February 2011 for $20 billion in one of the biggest biotech deals the industry has seen.

Are you affected by the closure? Let us know what you think…

Andrew Turley

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Solvay offloads Pipelife stake – New UK spin-out investment fund – EMA confirms orlistat benefits (more…)

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Chemistry certainly has its share of happy accidents. Perkin tried for quinine but got a dye (and his fortune); while Wilbrand tried for a dye and ended up with high explosive… TNT. Simon Cotton tells the story in this week’s Chemistry in its element podcast.

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The AAAS meeting rounded off with a look at how on Earth we’re going to feed increasing numbers of people who are developing a greater taste for pork, chicken and beef. Currently, livestock takes up 30% of the world’s farmland – both in grazing land and crops for feed – and with global consumption of meat expected to almost double by 2050 a solution is urgently needed. (more…)

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12 February 2012: Have something to say about an article you’ve read on Chemistry World this week? Leave your comments below…


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Is youth waste on the young… scientists? That’s the provocative question Catherine Beaudry from the Ecole Poloytechnique de Montréal, Canada, posed on Saturday morning on day three of the AAAS. (more…)

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