Updated from 4:19 p.m. EDTHealth stocks stayed in positive territory overall on Friday with a few regulatory and deal-oriented headlines. One big mover, Indevus ( IDEV), rocketed $1.78, or 103%, to $3.51 on a double dose of positive news. Indevus said Friday that it will resubmit its application for its testosterone replacement therapy, Nebido, in the first quarter of 2009 and that a new trial -- which could have delayed the filing for up to 18 months -- won't be necessary. Separately, the company announced it will partner with Teva Pharmaceuticals ( TEVA) for pagaclone, a drug for treating stuttering that's in midstage development. Heading in the other direction, NPS Pharmaceuticals ( NPSP) said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday that GlaxoSmithKline ( GSK) is terminating a phase II study of osteoporosis drug Ronacaleret due to lack of efficacy. Shares gave up $1.05, or 12.6%, to $7.28 on Friday. Also on the decline, Savient Pharmaceuticals' ( SVNT) shares fell after the company said that it is still evaluating its options for its lead product, pegloticase, as well as other transactions to maximize shareholder value. The company said, however, that it can't give any assurance if or when a deal will get done. The company said it was on track to file its application for the approval of the drug with the FDA by the end of October. Shares declined $2.90, or 15.5%, to $15.82. In other news, Alpharma ( ALO) hasn't tired of rejecting King Pharmaceuticals ( KG). The company advised shareholders not to tender their shares to King. Earlier in September, King's board authorized a tender offer to purchase all of the outstanding shares of Class A Common Stock of Alpharma for $37 a share -- up from its initial $33 a share proposal.
Alpharma said it is still exploring its strategic alternatives, including the possible sale of the company to King or another party for a price higher than the $37 a share. King shares were down 12 cents, or 1.2%, at $9.76, while Alpharma shares added 67 cents, or 1.83%, at $37.25. Big Pharma player Eli Lilly ( LLY) was waiting for word from the FDA on its blood thinner prasugrel, which would be marketed under the name Effient in the U.S. The drug has already been delayed once. If approved, the drug has blockbuster potential, and it would compete with Plavix, which Sanofi-Aventis ( SNY) and Bristol-Myers Squibb ( BMY) market. Lilly's shares edged up 22 cents, or 0.47%, to $46.82. The Amex pharmaceutical index, of which King and Eli Lilly are components, was up 0.4%, at 299.26. The Nasdaq and Amex biotech indices fared slightly better, adding about 1.1% apiece.