By Ben Hirschler LONDON (Reuters) - Drug industry productivity is continuing to improve, with a bumper haul of new products being launched and companies proving more successful in the final stages of clinical testing, according to a new analysis. Data from Thomson Reuters published on Tuesday showed the number of innovative medicines, or new molecular entities, launched globally in 2014 hit a 17-year high of 46, up from 29 in 2013. Last year's entrants included two cancer drugs that help the body's own immune cells fight tumors as oncology remained the top area for drug research, attracting nearly one third of all R&D spending.
By Linda Sieg FUKUSHIMA CITY, Japan (Reuters) - When Atsushi Hoshino set out to revive a group representing atomic bomb survivors in the rural northeast Japanese prefecture of Fukushima 30 years ago, one topic was taboo - criticizing the nuclear power industry upon which many relied for jobs. "Until then ...I felt somewhat uncomfortable about nuclear power, but not enough to oppose it. Rather, I was in a situation where it wasn't possible to oppose it," Hoshino, 87, told Reuters at his home in Fukushima City, about 60 km (37 miles)from the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi plant, the country's first commercial nuclear plant when it went online in 1971.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi leaves this week on a visit to three of the African nations hardest hit by an outbreak of the Ebola virus, the Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday. Ebola has killed more than 11,200 people in West Africa since it broke out in December 2013. China, Africa's biggest trading partner, has sent hundreds of medical workers to Africa and contributed aid of more than $120 million to the anti-Ebola effort, after initially facing criticism for not doing enough.
By David Schwartz PHOENIX (Reuters) - An Arizona man who admitted to decapitating his wife and her two dogs in a bloody incident last month in Phoenix told authorities he was attempting "to get the evil out" of her, according to court documents released on Monday. Kenneth Dale Wakefield, 43, also told police that he had smoked marijuana and the designer drug Spice about an hour before the gruesome killings in a Phoenix apartment on the morning of July 25, the documents showed. Wakefield, a transient with a history of mental illness who also maimed himself in the incident, was booked into a Maricopa County jail Aug. 1 on one count of first-degree murder and two counts of animal cruelty after being released from a local hospital.
By Susan Cornwell and Alex Wilts WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican legislation to cut off federal funding for Planned Parenthood failed to gather enough support in the U.S. Senate on Monday, halting at least for now moves to punish the women's health group for its role in gathering fetal tissue from abortions for medical research. Senate Democrats succeeded in stopping the bill on a procedural vote. It received 53 votes, with 46 senators opposing it.
Seattle wants to close about a dozen water pipe smoking lounges linked to three homicides and other violence over the past year and a half, the city's mayor said on Monday. The city is expanding its authority to revoke business licenses and pursuing criminal charges against the owner of a hookah lounge located near where a man was killed last month, Mayor Ed Murray said in a statement. "Far too many smoking lounges attract and sustain illegal, violent activity that has no place in our neighborhoods," Murray said.
By Tim Ghianni NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Reuters) - A man suspected of fatally shooting a police officer in Memphis over the weekend surrendered to authorities on Monday after an extensive manhunt and being placed on the state's most-wanted fugitives list, the sheriff's office said. Tremaine Wilbourn is suspected of shooting Officer Sean Bolton, 33, multiple times during a scuffle after the officer pulled up to a parked car and apparently interrupted a drug deal, Memphis police said. The Shelby County Sheriff's Office said on its Twitter feed that Wilbourn was in custody.
By Andrew M. Seaman (Reuters Health) - The American Heart Association said today that more attention needs to be paid to the social factors that influence heart health, such as race, education, and address. "What weâre discovering is that this is a very complicated space and there may be a number of variables beyond people's control that have an impact on their health," said Dr. Clyde Yancy, an author of the report. Cardiovascular disease should not differ based on a person's ZIP code, Yancy said.
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A U.S. judge on Monday said he was "inclined" to keep an injunction in place that stops anti-abortion groups from releasing videos containing talk of the sale of fetal tissue. At a hearing in San Francisco federal court, U.S. District Judge William Orrick said the injunction would likely remain pending further legal proceedings. In a lawsuit filed last week, the National Abortion Federation, a nonprofit representing abortion providers, accused the Center for Medical Progress and its founder, David Daleiden, of illegally infiltrating and recording its private meetings. ...
WASHINGTON (AP) â The Senate blocked a Republican drive Monday to terminate federal funds for Planned Parenthood, setting the stage for the GOP to try again this fall amid higher stakes â a potential government shutdown that could echo into next year's presidential and congressional elections.