Thousands of people risk lives sailing from Bay of Bengal

12 Jun 2014

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Thousands of people desperate for peace and a better life elsewhere continue to risk their lives by crossing the Bay of Bengal, according to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). They include the Rohingya people who fled Myanmar when inter-communal violence erupted there two years ago. UNHCR has expressed concern about reports of growing abuse and exploitation by smugglers who transport these people by boat. To find out more about the people who continue to risk their lives crossing the Bay of Bengal, Derrick Mbatha spoke to Vivian Tan, UNHCR spokesperson based in Bangkok, Thailand.

The CTBTO’s headquarters are at the Vienna International Centre. UN Photo/Mark Garten

UN body reports signal trace from Malaysia Airlines flight

A trace signal from the Malaysia Airlines flight 370 which disappeared in March may have been found by the UN’s Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO). The organization had originally said there was no trace of the disappeared plane on its International Monitoring System, which is used to scrutinize the earth, sea and air for potential nuclear detonations. But now it is working with Australia’s Curtin University to examine data, which may ultimately reveal the location of the missing plane. Cristina Silveiro asked Marc Prior, a seismic acoustic officer at CTBTO in Vienna about the new data.

Susan McDade. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

Clean energy “made in China” has helped lift millions out of poverty

China has done more than any other country to lift millions of people out of poverty, according to the Country Action Team leader in the UN’s Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) Initiative. Rural households in developing countries are using solar and wind energy made in China as a motor for development. The price of these renewable energy technologies has dropped fast in the last 20 years, partly because China invests, manufactures and exports the technologies on a large scale to other countries. However, Chinese companies have been criticized for not doing enough to preserve the environment in countries where they fund big projects and for always bringing in their own labour force. Susan McDade from the SE4All Initiative sat down with Jocelyne Sambira to discuss how the reduced price of renewable energy has impacted Africa.

Presenter: Daniel Dickinson
Production Assistant: Sandra Guy
Duration: 10’00”

Qahwaji meets Malaysian Ambassador, Abdul Aziz

Qahwaji meets Malaysian Ambassador, Abdul Aziz
Thu 12 Jun 2014 at 15:37

NNA – Lebanese Army Chief, General Jean Qahwaji, met on Thursday at his office in Yarze with the Ambassador of Malaysia over the Lebanese-Malaysian relations on the military leve…

Milan District Court Confirms the Validity of Alfa Wassermann’s Rifaximin-alpha Patents

BOLOGNA, Italy, June 12, 2014 /PRNewswire/ —

Normix® is the only authorized Gastrointestinal antibiotic based on Rifaximin-alpha. No generic version is allowed.

With the judgment entered last April 18, the district court of Milan, Italy the court having original jurisdiction on the matter -denied a request from generic manufacturers to declare Alfa Wassermann’s patents on Rifaximin polymorphs invalid. Instead, the court upheld Alfa Wassermann’s claim, asserting the Rifaximin-alpha patent and prohibiting any further counterfeit production, advertising and marketing. The announcement is made by Alfa Wassermann, the Bologna-based Italian pharmaceutical multinational that developed Rifaximin-alpha, marketed under the trade name Normix® in Italy, Xifaxan®, Flonorm®, Rifacol®, Spiraxin® and other trade names in other countries. Approved in 34 countries including the US, Rifaximin-alpha is an oral gut-selective antibiotic indicated for most bacterial diarrheas, including travelers’ diarrhea, and other gastrointestinal (GI) disorders. Recently, Rifaximin-alpha was also approved for Hepatic Encephalopathy (HE) in the US and in Europe.

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“We welcome the court decision that has confirmed the uniqueness of Rifaximin-alpha, which is Alfa Wassermann R&D’s most prestigious product and one of the top selling Italian medicines in the US,” said Andrea Golinelli, Chief Strategy Officer, Alfa Wassermann. “The court ruling is a landmark decision for the protection of intellectual property (IP) and the recognition of its crucial value for pharmaceutical R&D and innovation. Without IP protection no scientific innovation nor progress to improve people’s health is possible.” concluded Golinelli.

Alfa Wassermann

Alfa Wassermann is an international Italian pharmaceutical Group with a sixty-year tradition in R&D, production and distribution of medicines of primary importance for people’s health. Its medicines have taken Alfa Wassermann to a leading position in a number of medical areas including Gastroenterology, Vascular medicine, Orthopedics, Rheumatology and Gynecology.

The Group is headquartered in Bologna, Italy, which is also the location of its long-standing R&D facilities. The Group’s international division is in Milan. The Group’s production facilities in Alanno (Pescara, Italy) are some of Europe’s most technologically advanced and make 50 million packaged items annually.

Alfa Wassermann operates globally through 12 subsidiaries in as many world markets. The Group employs 1,400 people and markets products in over 60 countries. In 2013 Alfa Wassermann consolidated sales aggregated to some 400 million euro.

Alfa Wassermann R&D’s most successful product is Rifaximin-alpha, an oral antibiotic for gastrointestinal disorders that is the market leader in Italy, but is also available in many other world countries, including the US. Rifaximin-alpha approval by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been a highly prestigious recognition for a medicine that is the fruit of Italian R&D.

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Media contact:
Angela Del Giudice
[email protected]