Life and Style

Cough and cold sufferers are being urged to check their medicines after a manufacturing fault may have led to small pieces of plastic contaminating some batches, health officials have said.

S&N remains comparatively dull

The Investment Column

Huntingdon faces US test

Huntingdon Life Sciences, the animal testing group which faces losing its UK licence following a Home Office investigation into animal cruelty, will come under new pressure in the US on Monday.

Cortecs in brittle bone advance

Cortecs International yesterday took a step closer to launching the world's first pill for brittle bone disease. Shares in the drug delivery and diagnostics group jumped 10 per cent to 268.5p after it announced positive results from an eagerly awaited study on its osteoporosis treatment, Macritonin.

Blood clot risk from HRT

Women on hormone replacement therapy face an increased risk of blood clots in the legs and lungs during their first year of treatment, a study reveals today. The risk is highest during the first six months when a woman using HRT is four or five times more likely to suffer clots than a non-user. This falls to a three-fold greater risk after six months. After a year, the risk to HRT users is no more than it is for non-users.

Shire buys US drugs delivery firm for pounds 105m

Shire Pharmaceuticals, the small group floated a year ago, is to increase its size by more than two-thirds following a deal to pay up to $170m (pounds 105m) for Pharmavene, a US drugs delivery company based in Maryland.

The Investment column: Medeva's big gamble should pay off

Shareholders in Medeva have suffered a stomach-churning voyage over the years, but signs that the drugs group has been steering a steadier course have grown much clearer of late. Market concerns have centred on methylphenidate, the generic form of Ritalin, the controversial treatment for unruly children made by Novartis. It is thought to have represented over two-thirds of group profits in the past, but Medeva's 70 per cent market share could be under attack from three competitors by next year, with Johnson Matthey potentially ready to enter the market with a rival product as early as this summer.

And so to bed: Ovaltine heads for disposal

Drugs group plans pounds 3bn sell-off of non-core brands

Why good names mean a good deal

Against the background of agreeing valuations, harmonising management structures, squaring the regulators and sugaring the pill of job losses, the subject of corporate identity might seem the last of anybody's concerns when it comes to mergers and acquisitions.

Doc swaps stethoscope for a pounds 50bn briefcase

City & Business

Ciba-Geigy and Sandoz to merge into pounds 40bn giant

Pharmaceutical fusion: Biggest merger in history will create `Novartis', the world's second-largest drugs group, while bid spotlight turns on Zeneca
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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us