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  • Biden takes 'Moonshot' cancer campaign to Vatican

    This picture released by the Vatican press office shows Pope Francis (L) shaking hands with US Vice President Joe Biden on April 29, 2016 at the VaticanUS Vice President Joe Biden won Pope Francis's backing Friday for advances in cancer treatment to be made available to everyone, as he brought his "Moonshot" campaign to the Vatican. Biden, whose 46-year old son Beau Biden died from brain cancer last year, made an emotional speech at a stem cell summit thanking Francis for counselling his family during the pontiff's visit to the United States. Francis told the summit, which is being hosted by the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Culture and US-based Stem for Life Foundation, it was unacceptable that patients suffering rarer types of cancer or childhood diseases were sidelined "because investing in them is not expected to produce substantial economic returns".

  • French drug giant Sanofi vows hostile bid for US prey

    Sanofi, the 11th largest pharmaceutical company in the world by stock market valuation, made an unsolicited all-cash $9.3 billion takeover offer for US drug firm MedivationFrench pharmaceutical giant Sanofi vowed to open a hostile takeover battle Friday after its $9.3 billion (8.2 million-euro) offer for US cancer drug maker Medivation was dismissed for being too cheap. Sanofi, warning that has a strong record in takeovers, said it will not give up its pursuit of the reluctant American prey, manufacturer of the high-priced, blockbuster prostate cancer medication Xtandi. Medivation said its board had unanimously rejected Sanofi's unsolicited, non-binding cash offer of $52.50 a share, declaring that it "substantially" undervalued the company and was not in the interests of shareholders.

  • Iran moderates eye more gains in run-off parliamentary election

    Iranian woman holds a girl as she casts her vote during a second round of parliamentary elections, in ShirazBy Parisa Hafezi ANKARA (Reuters) - Iranians voted in a second round of parliamentary elections on Friday, with allies of reformist President Hassan Rouhani seeking to wrest more seats from hardliners. Rouhani's moderate and centrist allies made big gains in elections on Feb. 26 for parliament and a clerical body that will elect the next Supreme Leader, but they failed to win a majority of the 290-member assembly. Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli, speaking on Iranian state television, said people would vote on 68 undecided seats in constituencies where candidates failed to get 25 percent of votes cast in the first round.

  • Valeant annual report reveals new issues, company overhauls board

    File photo of the headquarters of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc in LavalValeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc on Friday issued a 2015 financial report that met an important deadline for creditors, revealing new details on a range of financial and legal issues, and it also announced changes to its board. Shares in Valeant fell 4.0 percent to $33.81 in midday trading in New York on Friday and are well down from their all time high of $263.70 in August. Valeant's relationship with Philidor RX Services, which has been distributing its drugs, was terminated last year, hurting Valeant sales.

  • Norovirus sickens scores on Fred. Olsen cruise ship -U.S. agency

    The norovirus outbreak took place aboard the Britain-based line's Balmoral during a transatlantic cruise, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in a statement. The CDC said 153 passengers and six crew members had fallen ill from norovirus, whose symptoms include vomiting and diarrhea. The CDC said that the cruise line and the ship's crew had increased cleaning and disinfection and collected stool specimens.

  • Muslim leader in India under fire from activists for supporting FGM

    By Rina Chandran MUMBAI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The leader of the only South Asian Muslim community known to practice female genital mutilation (FGM) came under criticism on Friday by campaigners who accused him of urging followers to continue the centuries-old custom. Little is known about FGM in India, where it is carried out in great secrecy by the close-knit Dawoodi Bohra community, a Shi'ite Muslim sect thought to number over 1 million that considers the practice to be a religious obligation. An audio clip of Syedna Muffadal Saifuddin's speech at a mosque in Mumbai, has been authenticated by several members of the community.

  • Kids with more daily stress have more nightly asthma awakenings

    By Kathryn Doyle (Reuters Health) – - A stressful day may make a child more prone to an asthma attack that night - with worse than usual asthma symptoms the next day as well, a small U.S. study suggests. “Nocturnal asthma is an area that patients often talk about but there’s not a lot of research in child nocturnal asthma,” said lead author Dr. Caroline C. Horner of the Department of Pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine and St. Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri. For about 12 weeks, 46 children with diagnosed asthma and their caregivers filled out daily diary cards with 42 items addressing nighttime awakening for asthma or other reasons, and measures of parental and child stress.

  • Fatness and Sickness -- It's Your Fault When...

    Fatness and Sickness -- It's Your Fault When...Peruse my writing, and you'll quickly notice I'm not one to point the finger at obese individuals for their excess body fat. As clearly, we're not living in a world with a bunch of lazy, undisciplined, sloths.Most people are making a conscious effort to stay fit, by exercising regularly and eating healthy, but it's the fake health food and...

  • Sanofi, Medivation dig in for big biotech takeover battle

    French multinational pharmaceutical company SANOFI logo is seen at the headquarters in ParisBy Matthias Blamont PARIS (Reuters) - Sanofi and its takeover target Medivation dug in for trench warfare on Friday, with the French drugmaker confident of winning over investors and the U.S. cancer firm insisting it was better off staying independent. Sanofi, which has a track record of winning hostile fights in the biotech sector, said it was ready to speak directly to Medivation shareholders about its spurned $9.3 billion offer. "While to date Medivation has chosen not to enter into discussions regarding this value-creating transaction, Sanofi remains committed to the combination," it said.