News An image of a mouse embryo with beating heart generated totally from STAP cells

Experts say the ground-breaking discovery could pave way for routine use of stem cells in medicine

Prisons chief Nick Hardwick warns over resources

Prisoners are spending too much time stuck in their cells watching daytime television because of a lack of resources, the Chief Inspector of Prisons has said.

Simon Timson is the new director of performance for UK Sport

Cricket guru Simon Timson given Rio role

Simon Timson, one of the men behind England's rise to No 1 in cricket's Test rankings, has been given the task of overseeing Britain's attempt to improve on their London medal haul at the Rio Olympics.

Employees of Sanofi protest against job cuts

Exclusive: MS drug 'rebranded' – at up to 20 times the price

Pharmaceutical giant withdraws existing treatment to boost profits

Federal and state health officials are scrambling to contact patients who might be affected by the widening outbreak

13,000 patients may have been exposed to fungus

As many as 13,000 patients across the US had steroid injections that may have been contaminated by a fungus linked to a rare form of meningitis that has killed eight people, federal officials said yesterday.

AstraZeneca new boss's debut buy

AstraZeneca's new boss yesterday agreed his first major deal at the pharmaceuticals giant, spending up to $272m (£169m) on the rights to an experimental kidney drug. This month, on his first day in the job, Pascal Soriot suspended Astra's share buybacks for the rest of the year.

Britain's Sir John Gurdon wins Nobel prize in medicine for his pioneering work in cloning and stem cells

The 79-year-old was the first person to clone an animal from a single cell

Medicine implicated in rare meningitis cases went to 23 US states

More than 17,000 vials of an injectable steroid that has been linked to 35 cases of meningitis, five of them fatal, were sent to doctors' offices and clinics in 23 states over the summer, health officials said yesterday.

18,000 websites selling illegal medicines closed down

More than 18,000 websites selling illegal medicines have been shut down during a global crackdown on illicit internet trade in pharmaceuticals.

Damned By Chuck Palahniuk

"Are you there, Satan? It's me, Madison" – so the preppy heroine of Palahniuk's novel kicks off each new chapter, cutely pardoying Judy Blume's Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret.

Inside Obama's war on weed

Does anybody still think criminalising drugs works? Alas, most people do, including Barack Obama. He was a dope user in his younger days, and when asked if he inhaled (Bill Clinton having said he didn't), responded: "I inhaled frequently. That was kind of the point." In America today, seventeen states say cannabis can be distributed for medical purposes. The Daily Beast has a fine report on what that means in practice.

Market Report: Shire gets a boost from legal hopes

The wider market may have been feeling rather poorly yesterday, but Shire was one stock looking somewhat healthier. The drugs manufacturer found itself among the top blue-chip risers amid optimistic comments over its upcoming legal battles.

Leading article: Drugs companies, heal thyselves

Research suggesting that the vast majority of the new drugs launched by pharmaceutical companies are only tweaked versions of old ones, with little – if any – improvement in therapeutic effect, cannot but be alarming. The good news, however, is that there is a solution, or at least the start of one, if regulators are prepared to be brave.

AstraZeneca forced to swallow more dire sales

AstraZeneca, the struggling drug maker which is without a permanent boss after its chief executive quit under shareholder pressure, yesterday had another ailment to deal with as second-quarter sales fell by a fifth.

More trouble for leaderless AstraZeneca as sales dive

Pre-tax profit was down by 36 per cent at £3.8bn in the first half of 2012

GlaxoSmithKline return to sales growth is held back by austerity-led price pressure

Sharp declines in drug revenues in Europe and the US as austerity-struck governments demand price cuts saw Britain's biggest pharmaceuticals group, GlaxoSmithKline, yesterday warn of flat sales this year.

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