Business briefs

Dec. 09, 2013 @ 07:14 PM

N.C. Mutual, other groups to hold health care talk
DURHAM – N.C. Mutual Life Insurance Co., the Greater Durham Black Chamber of Commerce and the Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People Economic Committee are holding a discussion on Medicare and President Obama’s health care overhaul today.
The event, which will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. at NC Mutual’s headquarters at 411 W. Chapel Hill St., is meant to offer information and to answer questions about Medicare as well as about the federal health law.
Maurice Bridges of N.C. Mutual, Krystal Holman of Project Access and Shawn Williams of Mechanics & Farmers Bank are expected to attend, according to a news release.

United Therapeutics subpoenaed
SILVER SPRING, Md. – The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General has subpoenaed United Therapeutics Corp., the Maryland-based drug development company that has Research Triangle Park operations, for drug marketing documentation, and other information.
According to news release from the company, the subpoena requests documents for the company’s three pulmonary arterial hypertension treatments, including for its marketing practices for them.
United Therapeutics officials plan to cooperate with the investigation.

RTP’s Hamner Institutes announces deal
DURHAM – The Hamner Institutes for Health Sciences, a Research Triangle Park-based nonprofit science research organization, has a new agreement with Cellular Dynamics International.
According to a news release, the agreement is for the development of test tube-based screening procedures that can be used to test the toxicity of chemicals.
The institute said in a news release Monday that it plans to develop screening assays for chemical, environmental and pharmaceutical toxicology assessments using Cellular Dynamics International’s human-induced pluripotentant stem cell-derived hepatocytes.
The human “iPS cell-derived hepatocytes” are expected to provide a consistent, reproducible source of liver tissue that may offer significant improvement over existing test tube models used to test toxicity of chemical compounds. 
The Hamner has a toxicity pathway research program that’s designed to advance an integrated systems biology approach to toxicity testing research. Partners sponsoring the research include Agilent Technologies Inc., Illumina, Dow Chemical, Dow Corning Corporation, ExxonMobil, Unilever and CropLife America member companies. The Long-Range Research Initiative of the American Chemistry Council supported earlier stages of this research. CDI will join this consortium and will collaborate with Hamner scientists on technical aspects of assay development.