FDA Rejects Orexigen’s Weight-Loss Drug, Arena Lays Off 66, ResMed CEO Jumps to CareFusion, & More San Diego Life Sciences News

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the CEO of San Diego-based ResMed (NYSE: RMD) to take a job across town as the chairman and CEO of San Diego’s CareFusion (NYSE: CFN). Gallahue, 47, replaced former CareFusion chairman and CEO David Schlotterbeck, who is retiring. Meanwhile ResMed founder and executive chairman Peter Farrell is resuming his CEO duties there.

—I profiled Vista, CA-based Fluorotronics, which has developed pulsed-laser technology that it says identifies the unique spectral signature of carbon-fluorine bonds rapidly, accurately, and at low cost. Founding CEO Olga Sharts said the company is initially targeting the pharmaceuticals industry, where fluorine-labeled molecules make the technology ideally suited for both drug discovery and quality assurance.

—San Diego’s Ligand Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: LGND) acquired CyDex Pharmaceuticals for more than $36 million in mostly borrowed cash.

—San Diego-based drug developer Meritage Pharma raised $2 million from investors in a financing round that is expected to total $5.5 million. The company is focused on developing a treatment for eosinophlic esophagitis, in which an allergic reaction causes a person’s esophagus to swell.

—Cambridge, MA-based Vertex (NASDAQ: VRTX), which has operations in San Diego, joined with other drug makers to support studies that are intended to encourage the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to routinely screen for hepatitis C. If that happens, an additional 1 million people who don’t realize they have hepatitis C could turn to Vertex’s new hepatitis C drug.

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