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Today's Health Winners and Losers

PDI (PDII) rose 6% after the provider of sales and marketing services to the biopharmaceutical industry named a new chief executive. Michael Marquard will replace Larry Ellberger, who had been serving as interim CEO since the fall of 2005. Marquard, who has more than 30 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, most recently served as vice president at Mylan Laboratories (MYL) and president of Mylan Bertek Pharmaceuticals. Marquard's appointment is effective on May 11. PDI shares were trading up 82 cents to $13.50.

Shares of Health Net (HNT) rose 7% after the managed-health care company's first-quarter earnings topped analyst forecasts. The company earned $76.6 million, or 65 cents a share, on revenue of $3.19 billion. Analysts expected earnings of 62 cents a share and revenue of $3.19 billion. During the year-earlier quarter, the company earned $21.3 million, or 19 cents a share, on revenue of $2.91 billion. The year-earlier results included pretax charges of $67 million.

Health Net sees second-quarter earnings of 61 cents to 66 cents a share, including one-time costs of $6.5 million. Analysts project earnings of 70 cents a share. For all of 2006, the company continues to forecast earnings of $2.90 to $3.10 a share, in line with the $2.99 a share that analysts project. Shares were up $2.65 to $40.79.

Other health care volume movers included Pfizer, up 20 cents to $25.61; UnitedHealth Group (UNH), down $1.22 to $45.17; Boston Scientific (BSX), up 6 cents to $21.97; Medtronic (MDT), down 24 cents to $48.12; Bausch & Lomb (BOL), up $1.99 to $44.88; Amgen (AMGN), up 79 cents to $67.90; Aetna (AET), up 85 cents to $38.84; WellPoint (WLP), up $1.81 to $71.82; and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), up 1 cent to $58.71.

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